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Hi all, just wondering what you all make of the insulation bellow? Is this asbestos? Never seen it before was changing a fuse board and loads of started coming through the ceiling.


231A8AD2-0FD8-425B-AED2-8CF6D25FAA49.jpeg
 
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B

Bobster

Well, the quality of the photo isn't great. A closer up, in focus shot would help.

However there is only one way to truly know, an that's to have it tested.

No asbestos register? Floor doesn't look like a domestic environment. Unless it's in a garage etc..
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #3
That’s as close as my phone will let me and doesn’t stay sharp


28B6025D-EE0C-4573-A79D-E65F8A0650F3.jpeg
 
B

Bobster

It doesn't look like any asbestos I've seen before.

However, like I said, the only way to be sure is by having it tested.
 
As Rob said ^^^
Asbestos can be found in many products and with varying degrees of amounts (%'s) and varying degrees of severity. If its a commercial or industrial premises then there should be an asbestos register available. If not the only way to be 100% certain is to get in a specialist and have it tested.
If you go to the HSE website they have good guides on what procedure you should take if you happen to come across what you suspect as asbestos.

Here is a link to it HSE: Asbestos - health and safety in the workplace - http://www.hse.gov.uk/asbestos/

Personally it doesn't look like any material I have come across that contains asbestos. but you would be very surprised on the vary products out there that do contain asbestos in some degree or other. An example of this is things like - old toilet seats and floor tiles...
 
Where was the insulation?
What age of building?
 
B

Bobster

It doesn't cost much to have it tested so you're sure.

@SparkyChick is probably a good person to talk about it. I know she posted about going on training and having things tested fairly recently.
 
It doesn't cost much to have it tested so you're sure.

@SparkyChick is probably a good person to talk about it. I know she posted about going on training and having things tested fairly recently.
there are many training courses available but the most common are either a 1 day or 1/2 day course. The 1 day course is asbestos awareness with additional training allowing you to work with non licensed material. The 1/2 day course is just an awareness course. I have completed both courses. I highly recommend the full 1 day course. This enables you to get a good understanding of whats involved in asbestos and guidance on how to deal with it, yourself or if necessary by a licensed contractor.

Here is a link to a website that offers what I'm talking about, there are plenty of training centres country wide that offer similar.
Asbestos Awareness Training Courses - https://www.oracleasbestos.com/services/asbestos-training/?mh_keyword=asbestos%20training%20course&mh_matchtype=e&mh_keyword=asbestos%20training%20course&mh_adgroupid=75131800492&advert=345491305623&gclid=Cj0KCQjwn8_mBRCLARIsAKxi0GLiJ0FLqr9q3iaBn2t6SEhHWF_jWOQzzKIV6MnAxBDzrkWvPfroHi4aAnH-EALw_wcB
 
Just to add, personally I feel that for the small cost of the courses its worth the money for a few of reasons.

1. Peace of mind that you have good awareness of the possible hazards of asbestos and if or when you are likely to come across it
2. A good understanding of the types and severity of asbestos and where you are likely to find it.
3. Knowledge of how to deal with, work with or avoid it if you do come across it.
4.Many companies ask for you as a contractor to provide evidence of asbestos awareness training before commencing work (this will increase in the future)
5. When presented with an asbestos register you will have a better understanding of what you are reading and looking at.

The scary thing is most of us (at least around 30+) have probably ingested into our lungs more than too much asbestos over the years. Based on the lack of awareness prior to the late 90's early 00's the health department expects a significant number of carcinogenic related deaths to increase dramatically for the next 20-30 years due to us lot breathing in all this crap without realising it.
 
B

Bobster

MDF fibers will likely be the next big thing.
 
MDF fibers will likely be the next big thing.
On topic at the moment is any thermal insulating materials that could be carcinogenic.
Basically any material that you can breath in, gets stuck in your lungs and your body struggles to rid of. The EU are looking at upgrading the risk rating from low to high risk, and this is just one area.
 

SparkyChick

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Mentor
Arms
Esteemed
MDF fibers will likely be the next big thing.
That and silica... silicosis is high on the agenda.

I second what @Intoelectrics said about the non-licensed works training. It's very handy to know how to properly and safely deal with it, but be warned your usual business insurance may not cover you (and insurance that does is eye wateringly expensive).

If you are at all unsure get it tested. I would agree with @ruston , it looks like vermiculite and as such should not be anything to worry about apart from silica dust.

It's also worth pointing out that if you're working on properties that were built before the year 2000 (IIRC), I believe it's a legal obligation to have gone through asbestos awareness training.

For all my asbestos issues I deal with a local company that specialises in it. I can ring them any time and seek guidance and as a consequence I push all the testing I have clients do their way.

If you need to do non-licensed works, you have to have suitable training even though the HSE provide excellent guidance documents that you should stick to rigidly. And keep in mind some non-licensed work are notifiable to the relevant authority (such as the removal of large amounts of artex using gelling) which then requires you to undertake a respiratory medical regularly and keep the records for 50 years I believe.

The company I deal with for everything else asbestos related (overalls, disposal bags, equipment hire etc.) are SMH Products (IIRC) and they have branches all over the place. Prices are pretty reasonable, I hired a class H vacuum from them for drilling/cutting artex ceilings and walls, well worth it compared to the pasting method you can use as it saves a lot of time.

But the key advice is if you are uncertain, get it tested. It's not your problem if (as one of my clients did after I requested she have the insulation in the loft checked) they have asbestos in the ceiling of every room in the form of artex for example. If you don't and it turns out you inadvertently find some and release fibres, then the fines can be astronomical... if the HSE are paying attention.

To clarify that last comment... I reported a possible release of asbestos fibres to the HSE as a house I know to have asbestos present in nearly every wall and ceiling (I know this because I rewired it and had to drill and cut it) has recently undergone major renovations, the waste from which was simply left in the front garden like normal uncontaminated building waste. The HSE did nothing, as far as I can tell, they didn't even send someone to the site to look at it.
 
....The scary thing is most of us (at least around 30+) have probably ingested into our lungs more than too much asbestos over the years. Based on the lack of awareness prior to the late 90's early 00's the health department expects a significant number of carcinogenic related deaths to increase dramatically for the next 20-30 years due to us lot breathing in all this crap without realising it.
Remember "Rawl Plastic" ? Brilliant stuff for plugging nasty rough holes... until they realised it was made from white asbestos ! Came as a powder, which needed wetting to make it into a putty. Easiest way to wet it was spit... so you'd put your face right over it !.... Happy days...
 
That and silica... silicosis is high on the agenda.

I second what @Intoelectrics said about the non-licensed works training. It's very handy to know how to properly and safely deal with it, but be warned your usual business insurance may not cover you (and insurance that does is eye wateringly expensive).

If you are at all unsure get it tested. I would agree with @ruston , it looks like vermiculite and as such should not be anything to worry about apart from silica dust.

It's also worth pointing out that if you're working on properties that were built before the year 2000 (IIRC), I believe it's a legal obligation to have gone through asbestos awareness training.

For all my asbestos issues I deal with a local company that specialises in it. I can ring them any time and seek guidance and as a consequence I push all the testing I have clients do their way.

If you need to do non-licensed works, you have to have suitable training even though the HSE provide excellent guidance documents that you should stick to rigidly. And keep in mind some non-licensed work are notifiable to the relevant authority (such as the removal of large amounts of artex using gelling) which then requires you to undertake a respiratory medical regularly and keep the records for 50 years I believe.

The company I deal with for everything else asbestos related (overalls, disposal bags, equipment hire etc.) are SMH Products (IIRC) and they have branches all over the place. Prices are pretty reasonable, I hired a class H vacuum from them for drilling/cutting artex ceilings and walls, well worth it compared to the pasting method you can use as it saves a lot of time.

But the key advice is if you are uncertain, get it tested. It's not your problem if (as one of my clients did after I requested she have the insulation in the loft checked) they have asbestos in the ceiling of every room in the form of artex for example. If you don't and it turns out you inadvertently find some and release fibres, then the fines can be astronomical... if the HSE are paying attention.

To clarify that last comment... I reported a possible release of asbestos fibres to the HSE as a house I know to have asbestos present in nearly every wall and ceiling (I know this because I rewired it and had to drill and cut it) has recently undergone major renovations, the waste from which was simply left in the front garden like normal uncontaminated building waste. The HSE did nothing, as far as I can tell, they didn't even send someone to the site to look at it.
Spot on and very informative there Sparky Chick!

The only down side to these increasing regulations is that some companies are using it all as an excuse to make mega bucks rather than actually tackling the true issue of H&S.
I recently worked on a factory where a specialist asbestos removal company were called in (rightly so) to investigate possible contamination from a damaged A.I.B that had fell from a ceiling smashing on to the floor. The A.I.B was actually a low risk board made up from a marginal % of white asbestos (can't remember the exact figures) But it should have been a small containment set up and a straight forward clean up with air monitoring in place. Anyhow nobody at the company had a clue what the true situation was and the asbestos company played on this with a big scare monger act and totally ripped them off. A complete overkill with massive costs.
This experience just reaffirmed to me that asbestos awareness is an essential qualification to gain these days, for lots of reasons!
 
In my opinion this asbestos awareness should be included in electrical apprenticeships.
It would only take a day to educate people on the potential risks, people who are about to embark on an lifetime of drilling chasing etc would be a good starting point, half of the industry is clueless.

A lad at work who has just finished his college hasn’t got a clue about it but they did cover radicalisation!?
 

FatAlan

-
Trainee
To be quite frank, having worked recently, more closely with plasters, chippys and just general building work the amount of dust and crap that is breathed in is phenomenal. Glass fibre from loft insulation is horrible and I’m surprised that it is allowed to be used.
 

ruston

-
Mentor
Arms
Esteemed
To be quite frank, having worked recently, more closely with plasters, chippys and just general building work the amount of dust and crap that is breathed in is phenomenal. Glass fibre from loft insulation is horrible and I’m surprised that it is allowed to be used.
100% agree. That old green coloured stuff is evil. The rest of it is not much better,
The daddy of them all is the old pug lime mixed with soot it is a real combination of misery .
One of the worst things I ever worked with was powdered carbon for the making of anodes.
 

edexlab

-
Arms
In my opinion this asbestos awareness should be included in electrical apprenticeships.
It would only take a day to educate people on the potential risks, people who are about to embark on an lifetime of drilling chasing etc would be a good starting point, half of the industry is clueless.

A lad at work who has just finished his college hasn’t got a clue about it but they did cover radicalisation!?

My Wife has just had to do a radicalisation course at work

She works in an Operating theatre and her clients are always unconscious!

Agree 100% with the idea of including training as part of an apprenticeship and also I think Any Installation/ Maintenance course
 

davesparks

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Mentor
Arms
Esteemed
In my opinion this asbestos awareness should be included in electrical apprenticeships.
I think it should be part of any trade apprenticeship, every trade can be exposed to it. Sometimes it could be tailored to suit the specific trades, such as a mechanics main issue being old brakes and clutches, but everyone should get the training.
 
No, it’s Silica dust.
Its both, but depends on what is in trend at the current time. Anything that is "potentially" carcinogenic low or high risk is being targeted. A company I do work for are spending a fortune on reducing sillica dust and have banned the use of mdf. Now they are looking at the thermal insulating materials, such as glass fibre and similar. The thermal insulation upgrade is looking at being implemented next year and this is just one example.

One of the problems this causes is that if people are not educated properly about these things then they often react dependent on what they hear, either scare mongering or ignorance, neither which is any use in tackling the issues appropriately.

Asbestos for example is only dangerous if the fibres are released and breathed in. So in the majority of cases (dependent on the condition and severity) it can be managed and even worked with. Yet because of the scare mongering some people worry they might die if they even come in to contact with it. On the flip side others show their ignorance and are happy to just drill or break material containing asbestos (often without realising) releasing the fibres into the environment potentially subjecting themselves and others to breathing them in.

The thing is, it can take up to 20+ for the symptoms of asbestosis and other related carcinogenic diseases to emerge from breathing in materials the body can't rid. Much like smoking related problems each person reacts differently. Some people will develop cancer from asbestos others won't, even if they have been exposed to similar amounts of fibre inhalant.

I wouldn't be surprised if it becomes mandatory in the near future for trades people to have some sort of awareness training.

But I will reiterate to you good folks, if you haven't done the course I strongly advise you do! It's worth every penny and may potentially save your life and/or those working with you.
 

edexlab

-
Arms
Silica has been a big thing for ages. Even when I started in the quarries silicosis, the causes and problems were well documented.
When I did my apprenticeship in a Quarry in the late 80's the company bought every member of Staff a pint of milk each day,
No one mentioned Silicosis, just that it helped with the dust
Rarely saw masks being worn and quite often had to dig motors out the dust was piled up and hardly ever cleared.

Returned to the industry briefly a couple of years ago and things had changed a lot,
A lot of emphasis was made on the dangers and the quarries were keeping the dust under control.

Oh yeah and no free milk anymore!
 
 
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