Is Asbestos in Schools and other Institutional Buildings?
Posted in Asbestos Removal, on February 10, 2022
Like most buildings constructed before the mid-1970s, it was common to have asbestos-containing materials hidden behind the hallways and walls of school classrooms. School custodians were most at risk of indirectly interacting with the mineral, as tasks sometimes required cleaning surfaces and areas in spaces that were outside the peripherals of the student body. While considerable efforts have been made in asbestos removal in Mississauga schools, Canada’s Restoration Services professionals continue to identify the mineral lingering in educational centres and other institutional or commercial buildings, thanks to regular asbestos testing in Mississauga.
Its high effectiveness as an insulator and its heat resistance were the main reasons why asbestos was used to develop schools and other buildings. But what was once used as a resource in fire prevention is now one of the most dangerous naturally-occurring minerals when disturbed.
The History Of Asbestos
It was the norm to incorporate asbestos-containing materials when constructing schools and other buildings built for much of the 20th century. As previously mentioned, the mineral served as a reliable insulator that was highly effective in heat resistance. On top of that, the mineral was sold for cheap in the construction market.
In addition to schools, residential homes and commercial buildings, asbestos was used in the development of hospitals and universities as well. There are dozens of products that require asbestos removal in Toronto; the most common being ceiling and floor tiles, cement and cement sheets, insulation and adhesives.
The Dangers Of Asbestos Exposure
Many asbestos-containing materials are friable, meaning that they can be easily disturbed and send hazardous particles airborne. Exposure or directly inhaling the mineral can lead to a variety of severe health conditions, with the most common one being malignant mesothelioma cancer. This type of cancer typically forms in the lining of the lungs, but can also develop in the heart or abdomen.
Other asbestos-related illnesses include lung cancer, asbestosis (which can result in permanent lung damage), lung lining scarring and cancer of the throat, kidney and gastrointestinal tract. Even minimal asbestos exposure can be dangerous, and you may not even know that you’ve been exposed to the mineral. In fact, it can take up to 50 years for symptoms to become apparent. Common symptoms include shortness of breath, the development of a cough, coughing up blood and chest or abdomen pains.
Those who are most vulnerable to asbestos exposures are owners/occupants of old commercial or residential buildings, maintenance workers, construction and trade workers, shipbuilding workers, firefighters and workers in asbestos mining and milling.
Asbestos Removal in Mississauga
The process of asbestos removal in Mississauga should be handled by professionals only. You should never attempt to remove asbestos on your own, as this poses severe health risks to you, your students and school staff. If you fear that asbestos is present on your school’s site or your property, contact an expert at Canada’s Restoration Services to conduct asbestos testing in Mississauga.
Once testing confirms that asbestos is present on your school’s property, professionals at Canada’s Restoration Services use containment gear and equipment to secure the space to prevent any cross-contamination from occurring. The asbestos-containing material in question is sprayed with a binding agent to prevent it from going airborne, before the hardened plaster is placed in a safety hazard bag for appropriate disposal.