Before embarking on any work involving asbestos features, you should assess the overall nature and size of the job, and whether you would be able to complete the task. At any point, if you feel that the task is beyond your ability or too complicated, hire a qualified tradesperson. 

If you decide to handle the job yourself, then it’s best to assess how many sessions you would need to complete it. This is a crucial aspect of the asbestos removal project as you would then have to buy sufficient, appropriate equipment to complete the work. We will talk about what type of equipment you should be using to handle the job safely. But, before that, let’s look at which tools you should not use when removing asbestos.

Prohibited Tools

The use of specific equipment & tools on asbestos or any asbestos-containing material is prohibited under NSW laws. These are the things you should never use when removing asbestos:

  • High-pressure jets and water spray, power or any similar instruments and tools
  • Compressed air (Controlled use allowed)
  • Any high-speed power tools including sanders, drills, saws, angle-grinders, or any other equipment or tools like brooms that can result in the release of fine asbestos fibres into the surrounding air.

Some of the basic tools can only be used if:

  • The equipment/tools are enclosed during their use.
  • The equipment/tools are designed to suppress or capture airborne asbestos and are used in accordance with their design
  • The equipment/ tools are used in a way intended to suppress/capture all airborne asbestos safely

Some Aspects to Keep In View

Decontamination

  • All equipment and tools used in the course of the asbestos removal process have to be decontaminated before they are removed from the area where the asbestos removal work has been done.
  • The equipment and tools that can’t be decontaminated, need to be double-bagged and sealed correctly in asbestos waste bags before being removed.

Removal

The sealed bags containing the equipment/tools have to stay in a sealed state until they are decontaminated.

Safety Measures to Take During Asbestos Removal

  • Always work in well-ventilated areas and, wherever possible, outdoors (but not when it’s very windy).
  • Thoroughly wet down all the material before starting as well as at frequent intervals during the removal. You can spray the surfaces lightly with water. Alternatively, use a 1:10 PVA (polyvinyl acetate) water solution. You can also use a garden hose with a low-pressure setting if you are carrying out the work outdoors.
  • Keep the asbestos wet until you package it for transport.
  • Always use only non-powered hand tools such as hand-powered drills, a hand saw or a guillotine. These tools generate minimal amounts of corse waste chips and dust compared to ones generated when you use power tools.
  • Pull out all hardware like nails first. This helps in the removal of sheeting with minimal breakage.
  • Be careful while placing the sheets on the ground; do not drop them. Lower them slowly to the ground and then stack two layers of .2 mm(or more) thick polythene sheeting (heavy-duty builders’ plastic) on the asbestos sheets.
  • Minimise breaking or cutting of the asbestos products.

We at BreathEASY are an asbestos removal company that has been approved by the Australian Government. We handle projects of any shape and size. For any information on our services, contact us at02 8093 5461 or request a free quote through this form.