This program is responsible for the safe and proper control of asbestos containing materials. This includes compiling an inventory of known asbestos containing building materials, performing surveys, air sampling, and overseeing abatement activities.
The term “asbestos” is not a mineralogical definition but a commercial name given to a group of minerals that is resistant to electrical, chemical and thermal degradation. These minerals have been used in many products, including insulation and fireproofing materials, automotive brakes and textile products, and cement and wallboard materials.
The asbestos minerals have a tendency to separate into microscopic particles that can remain in the air and are easily inhaled. Persons occupationally exposed to asbestos have developed several types of life-threatening diseases, including lung cancer. Although the use of products containing asbestos has dramatically decreased, it is still found in many residential and commercial settings and continue to pose a health risk to workers and others.