Asbestos Removal Procedures in Victoria
How to remove asbestos safely?
Maintenance and removal of asbestos is an arduous assignment with intrinsic risks. This is for both employees and property users. It may result in accidental exposure to microscopic airborne asbestos fibres. And that may lead to life-threatening illnesses such as mesothelioma. So, the whole process requires utmost caution.
There are well-established protocols and legislation already in place. These ensure safe management of asbestos and ACM. Also, it helps in reducing the risk of exposing people to asbestos. It is mandatory to follow the set removal protocols to minimize any risk. Below is a detailed step by step procedure from the local experts of Asbestos Removal Melbourne. Plus, some helpful tips you can follow.
Before commencing the process, you need to do the following;
Assess the risk
You need to understand the percentage of asbestos-containing material (ACM). To get this data, you have to inspect the asbestos register and materials to determine if it is really ACM.
Assess the distance between barriers and the work area. Additionally, know the type and level of PPE needed to manage the asbestos fibres risk. Below is a list of some of the PPE you need on the site;
- P2 disposable mask or half-face respirator.
- Disposable coveralls for example European Standards Type 5 and 6.
- Face and hand wipes.
- Boot covers and gumboots.
- Training the workers
Conducting adequate staff training after the risk assessment is very important. It gives them an understanding of the possible risk intensity. And that knowledge helps to reduce exposure to asbestos.
Make sure that the area is set for the process of ACM removal. Get the permits to access the site. Also, know the number of workers you need on the site. Have a well-written procedure on how to undertake the process from start to final.
Look for a licensed asbestos removalist
The removal process incorporates getting a licensed asbestos removalist in Victoria. Having a certified asbestos removal specialist reduces the risk of exposure giving the best results. According to Victoria’s health control, the expert should possess the following;
- A waste transport certificate for waste.
- Waste transport permit for the vehicle.
- Take the asbestos to a licensed landfill.
Before contracting the person, ensure you verify the validity of their license. If you decide to remove the asbestos material by yourself, you have to follow the guidelines in Asbestos in Victoria guide. Unlike the licensed asbestos removalist, if you decide to do it by yourself then;
- You can transport the domestic asbestos with your own vehicle.
- You do not need a waste transport certificate.
- No need to get a vehicle permit.
- You must package asbestos in the right way.
- It is a must you transport the asbestos to a licensed landfill.
Starting the removal process
This is the stage that requires utmost caution and expertise. That’s why if you are not sure of what to do, don’t do this process alone. Before starting the process, you should undertake all the following activities carefully and follow the approved guidelines.
- Follow the set guidelines to dress the appropriate PPE before starting the process. Besides, before placing the hood, check the respirator well. This will ensure your safety.
- Ensure the area where the asbestos and ACM are placed is well sealed using polythene paper and timber. This creates an airtight enclosure in order to contain the airborne fibres.
- Apply the controlled wetting techniques. They include spraying, injecting using needles or by use of a sealant. It helps to restrict and reduce the fibres released on air.
- Apply air monitoring techniques to ensure the levels do not exceed. Also, it ensures that the concerned area is safe and ready for reoccupation.
- Ensure that the contaminated waste is securely put in a double bag, sealed and labelled.
- Cleaning, sealing off all the surfaces and finalising
Once you are done, you should clean and seal all the surfaces. You may use a vacuum cleaner to do so. After the cleaning, a supervisor should do a visual inspection of the site to ascertain that everything is in order.
Transport the asbestos to a licensed landfill
The licensed asbestos removalist should use his waste transport certificate to allow them to ferry the asbestos waste. Let them carry the sealed and labelled bags and safely dispose of them at a licensed waste disposal site.
The removal operatives should follow the set decontamination procedures after the whole process. If the removal is carried out in shifts, decontamination should be after every shift
Asbestos can affect your health if left in your area. That’s why Australia and other countries remain affected even after the asbestos ban.
Therefore, there is every need to be careful when interacting with it. Using an approved removal guideline is one you can ensure safety when interacting with asbestos.