The dangers of asbestos and how to deal with it
In recent years the safety concerns surrounding asbestos, both in the workplace and in domestic environments, have led to a number of safety campaigns and legislative decisions aimed at making people more aware of the potential dangers of asbestos and educating the public on how to safely deal with it.
1 – Asbestos Kills over 5000 People Per Annum
2 – The Dangers & Mesothelioma
3 – Asbestosis
4 – Pleural thickening
5 – Health Deterioration Causes
6 – Inhalation of Asbestos Fibres
7 – Asbestos Awareness Mindset
8 – The Importance of Sounding The Alarm
9 – Be Proactive and Have A Plan
10 – Protect Yourself
Asbestos Kills over 5000 People Per Annum
Around 5000 workers die every year after exposure to asbestos which means it’s vital that anyone working within the construction or development industry is aware of how to properly deal with it.
This post will highlight some of the major concerns surrounding asbestos and tips on dealing with it.
The Dangers & Mesothelioma
Mesothelioma is a type of cancer which is caused by asbestos.
There have been many cases in which builders or contractors within the demolition industry have contracted this disease after working with excessive amounts of asbestos.
This is one of the deadlier effects of asbestos as it affects the lungs and often remains undiscovered until it’s too late.
This condition is specifically caused by overexposure to asbestos and is often found in people that have worked around the material for several years.
Asbestosis causes severe scarring of the lung tissue and can result in a series of respiratory problems such as chronic shortness of breath.
It’s been known to be fatal in a number of cases.
After being exposed to a heavy amount of asbestos the pleura (lining) in your lungs can often become inflamed and swollen.
This can be very severe and in many cases, will require surgery or an extended cycle of prescribed medicine.
The symptoms include chest pains and difficulty breathing, which are common signs that many workers show after being exposed to asbestos even for a short period of time.
Health Deterioration Causes
There are several factors that can determine whether you will fall victim to one of the before mentioned conditions.
The amount of time you spend around asbestos has a large impact on the severity of any effects you may feel.
Inhalation of Asbestos Fibres
If you are exposed to the material for long periods of time you risk more fibres entering your lungs which will worsen its effect on your health.
Your age and whether or not you smoke will also determine how badly you are affected by asbestos.
If your lungs have already been damaged by years of smoking they will be more susceptible to the effects of asbestos.
Also, younger people are more likely to fall victim to mesothelioma.
Figures have shown that dust and fibres brought home by parents working in the development industry have caused severe problems amongst their children.
Dealing with Asbestos
Asbestos Awareness Mindset
If you work within the building development industry or any industry that involves working with asbestos it’s important to be aware of what exactly you’re dealing with and what to look out for when on the job.
Asbestos can be found in a number of different materials and fixtures; especially throughout older buildings so be sure to communicate with on-site managers and be aware of any areas in the building or structure that could contain asbestos.
The Importance of Sounding The Alarm
If you happen to come across anything that you know contains asbestos or that you may suspect to be asbestos, be sure to stop work immediately and let your superiors and colleagues know.
Equally, if you’re working with contractors or you’re outsourcing work to an external company it’s important to make them aware of any potential hazards and outline areas of the site that have been reported to contain asbestos.
Be Proactive and Have A Plan
If you operate a development company or contracting company it’s vital that you are aware of the laws and regulations in place surrounding the removal or replacement of asbestos materials.
It’s a good idea to have regular training sessions and awareness meetings in which you can educate your staff on the dangers of asbestos and make them aware of what to do in the event they find it.
If you are operating in an environment in which you are exposed to asbestos, the most important thing is to make sure you’re using the necessary PPE to keep yourself from harm.
Work clothes that are hardwearing and cover your whole body will keep the fibres from your skin.
Masks are vital in order to keep harmful asbestos dust from getting into your lungs.
There are a number of regulations in place that make it a requirement for companies to provide this type of equipment.
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