When dealing with asbestos abatement it is crucial to hire a reliable, experienced, and trustworthy company. The EPA estimates that over half of all asbestos abatement projects in the past were done incorrectly or unnecessarily. Luckily, there are some simple precautions that can be taken to ensure the company hired will perform the tasks safely and correctly.
The first thing to remember is that asbestos-containing materials that are in good condition can be left alone. There is no law that states you must remove asbestos. In addition, asbestos abatement is not cheap and should only be done if the material is a health hazard or will become disturbed during renovation or other related activities. If the decision is made to remove the asbestos-containing material, a certified, licensed professional should be hired.
When it comes to hiring an asbestos abatement specialist, it is much like hiring any other contractor. There are common-sense rules that should be followed. Be sure to interview the contractor. Be specific and ask questions regarding how the removal project will be performed. It is wise to check with the Better Business Bureau for any complaints against the contractor in the past. Ask the contractor for references of past jobs completed. When checking into references of past projects, focus on projects similar to the one you will be hiring them to do. Ask questions regarding the following:
- How will you protect floors, walls, and finishes on adjacent areas in my building?
- How will you ensure that no asbestos fibers are released into other areas of the building?
- How will you seal the work area from adjacent areas?
- Are all workers licensed and certified by the State? Ask for copies of these documents.
- How will the asbestos be containerized, and where will it be disposed of?
- How will I know that the air quality inside my building is safe after the work is complete?
In order to ensure that work is done correctly and the work is necessary, you may consider hiring a third party environmental consulting company. They can properly investigate the credentials of the contractor, monitor the project, and obtain final air clearance sampling at the completion of the work. Again, it is imperative to hire a licensed specialist. Insist that the professionals show proof of their completion of federal or state-approved training, or check regional EPA offices and local health departments for listings of licensed asbestos professionals. The company should also have at least one million dollars of insurance and be able to provide proof of workman’s compensation insurance. It is also a good idea to get estimates from several companies before selecting one for the job. Cheap is not always good. When dealing with hazardous material like asbestos, take proper precautions to insure that the contractor is qualified.
Midwest Environmental Control (MEC, Inc.) is a licensed asbestos testing and abatement specialist. MEC, Inc. has been in the asbestos removal business for over 30 years. Contact us for a free quote. (419) 382-9200