Asbestos Regulations are Administered by the EPA and OSHA
Who are the administrations that make the asbestos regulations? The EPA is the “Environmental Protection Agency” and OSHA is the “Occupational Safety and Health Administration”.
The health issues related to asbestos have been around for thousands of years. But doctors did not start reporting the dangers of asbestos exposure until early in the 1900s. Still the mineral was used in all manner of construction materials and with the insulating properties of asbestos use in ship building was also very popular.
Asbestos is member of the silicate family of minerals it is resistant to chemicals, electricity, fire and heat. The material is easy and cheap to add many different products.
The EPA's Asbestos Regulations
Heavy use of asbestos continued for many years until the EPA began imposing asbestos regulations. Out-right bans on the use of the mineral were not even called for until the mid to late 1970s.
The mineral is cheap and far too useful in many forms to be eliminated. Later in the late 1980s the EPA issued a ban on asbestos and a phase out of use.
The federal law in the United States, was the act that created the “Occupational Safety and Health Administration” Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970.
OSHA was responsible to set a limit of 100,000 fibers per cubic meter of workplace air. The experts maintain that there is no such thing as a "safe" limit of exposure. The experts want the United States to follow the example of other countries that have banned the use of asbestos entirely.
Here is a list of OSHA’s steps designed to prevent asbestos exposure or excessive exposure from “asbestos containing materials” or ACMs they include:
- Workers time has a set limit they can work around ACMS
- Workers are required to wear protective clothing around ACMs
- The primary workforce must be separated from areas with ACMs
- Areas that contain ACMs require ventilation systems
- All workers must decontaminated before going out in the general public with clean clothes and showers to remove the ACMs
- Employers must provide asbestos awareness training about the dangers of ACMs
EPA and OSHA Asbestos Regulations
The people were being exposed to the dangers of asbestos going back 3000 years. We owe the EPA and OSHA for implementing regulations governing the use and management of asbestos starting at the end of the 80s.
The EPA as late as the 90s has tried to implement stricter laws and asbestos regulations, but were struck down. Today we still have far too many products that contain asbestos.
Today we still live in a world where asbestos exposure can occur to almost anyone. Many industries such as construction, shipbuilding and mining are still at risk. There are still today cases of secondary exposure that happen to workers families. More asbestos regulations that govern precautionary measures are still needed today.
- The official OSHA web site: http://www.osha.gov/
- The EPA Official Website: http://www.epa.gov/
To stay up to date on all of the latest official Asbestos Regulations refer to the official EPA and OSHA websites!