Who Needs Asbestos Awareness Training?


Author: National Environmental Trainers, Inc.
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Visit us at http://www.natlenvtrainers.com Who Needs Asbestos Awareness Training? On August 10, 1994, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued new regulations covering asbestos. These regulations became effective on October 10, 1995. As a part of the new regulations, employers are required to present what is called "asbestos awareness training" to maintenance and custodial personnel who may come in contact with asbestos-containing materials. This does not imply that any of you will be doing asbestos work. On the contrary, this training is being presented in the hope that you may avoid any exposure by becoming more aware of the locations and types of asbestos. Asbestos is a generic term for a group of naturally occurring silicate minerals that are mined primarily in South Africa, Canada, and the former Soviet Union. Asbestos can appear in fibrous crystal form, and when crushed, separates into flexible fibers. There are three commercially important types of asbestos. Chrysotile is white asbestos with fine silky fibers. It accounts for over 90 percent of the asbestos used in the U.S. Chrysotile is mined in Canada and the Soviet Union. Amosite is known as brown asbestos and is used in heat insulation materials. Amosite is mined primarily in Transvaal, South Africa. Crocidolite is known as blue asbestos and is occasion- ally found with amosite or chrysotile in pipe or boiler wrap. Crocidolite is mined in South Africa. Tremolite, actinolite, and anthophylite are rarely found in building or commercial products. These minerals are being considered for separate regulation. Asbestos minerals have the following characteristics in common: • Separate into smaller and smaller fiber bundles when disturbed or handled • Resistant to heat, bacteria and chemicals • Great tensile strength and stiffness • Excellent electrical and thermal insulator • Very good noise insulator • Resistant to the effects of friction and wear An important term used in describing the condition of asbestos is the word "friable."


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