Asbestos information for flood-affected homeowners

June 25, 2013

CALGARY – Homeowners need to be aware that houses built before the mid-1980s may contain asbestos materials.

These materials include drywall mud, ceiling tiles, insulation and floor tiles. Remember that in many older homes, materials may have been replaced over the years through renovations and may be newer than the mid-1980s. New materials are not likely to contain asbestos.

Identifying Asbestos The safest way to identify and remove asbestos materials is to hire an environmental consultant to assess the property, and have a qualified contractor remove any asbestos materials.

Qualified contractors wear specialized personal protective equipment and have expert knowledge and techniques to avoid asbestos exposure.

Protecting Yourself

If you decide to remove flood-damaged materials yourself, there are actions you can take to lessen the risk of asbestos exposure.

If you are concerned you may have disturbed asbestos containing materials already, you can lessen the risk by:

Personal Protective Equipment

Personal protective equipment available to the general public does not completely protect against asbestos, but MAY lessen the risk of exposure. Equipment includes:

All those cleaning up flood-affected properties should change into clean clothing when leaving the property or area. Bag soiled clothing until it can be washed, regardless of whether asbestos may be present or not. Shower as soon as possible.

The Alberta Asbestos Abatement Manual contains information about asbestos and its removal and can be found here:

Alberta Health Services is the provincial health authority responsible for planning and delivering health supports and services for more than 3.9 million adults and children living in Alberta. Its mission is to provide a patient-focused, quality health system that is accessible and sustainable for all Albertans.

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