9.3 MB

9.3 MB
Managing Asbestos In Place
A Building Owner’s Guide to
Operations and Maintenance Programs
for Asbestos-Containing Materials
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . v
FOREWORD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . vii
Introduction and Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
● Background . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
● Chapter Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
Purpose and Scope of an Operations and Maintenance program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
● Purpose of O&M Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
● Scope of an O&M Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
● Chapter Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
Laying the Foundation for an Effective O&M Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
● The Asbestos Program Manager . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
● BuildingInspectionandAssessment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
● Developing an O&M Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
● IrnplementingandManaging an O&M
Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
● Cost Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9
● Selectingandhnplementing Alternative Abatement Actions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
● Chapter Summary. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
O&M Program Elements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12
● Informing Building Workers, Tenants, and Other Occupants . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12
● ACMSurveiUance-Reirwectionand Periodic Surveillance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14
● Supplement to Visual/Physical Evaluation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14
● WorkControl/Permit System . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
● O&M Work Practices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .16
–Worker protection programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .17
–Basic O&M Procedures. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 8
–O&M Cleaning Practices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
–Procedures for Asbestos Fiber Release Episodes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20
● Recordkeeping .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
● Chapter Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .22
Types of Training . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 3
● Chapter Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .25
Federal, State, and Local Regulations Affecting O&M Programs. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26
● OSHA Regulations &EPA Worker Protection Rule .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26
–Small-scale, Short-duration Projects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
● EPA National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) Regulations. . . .27
–Notification . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28
–Emissions Control and Waste Disposal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28
● Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA); Comprehensive Environmental Response,
Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA, or "Superfund") . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28
● Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28
● Asbestos Ban and Phaseout Rule . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
● Chapter Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29
Glossary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30
Sample Recordkeeping Forms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31
Illustrative Organzation Charts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
Additional Assistance (EPA, NESW, OSHA; Training ) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37
Respiratory Protection Recommendations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38
Existing EPA Guidance For ACM Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39
Sample List: Suspect Asbestos-Containing Materials . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40
References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .40
This document was prepared under contract to an agency of the United States Government. Neither the United States Government
nor any of their employees makes any warranty, expressed or implied, or assume any legal liability for any third party’s use of or the
results of such use of any information, product, or process discussed in this document. Mention or illustration of company or trade
names, or of commercial products does not constitute endorsement by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
The time and effort that many individual contributed to the development of this document is
gratefully acknowledged by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The material in this
publication represents EPA’s approximately 11 years of experience in considering public input and
fine tuning policies on managing asbestos-containing materials in buildings. This document
incorporates views expressed by safety and health professionals, property owners and managers,
public officials, general industry representatives, workers, and the general public.
The primary EPA developer and coordinator of the final
document was Dr. Robert Jordan of the Technical
Assistance Section, Environmental Assistance Division, Office of Toxic Substances. Without Bob’s constant oversight, combined with his technical knowledge
and concern that the document be representative of
state-of-the-art asbestos management, this document
would not have reached the public.
Joe Schechter, Chief of the Technical Assistance Section, managed the project and helped clarify and edit the
Guide. Bob McNally Chief of the Assistance Programs
Development Branch, was instrumental in the formative period of the Guide’s development and also devoted
long hours to its review Other important contributions
within the Environmental Assistance Division came
from Tom Tom and Dave Kling. Sylvia Thomas
provided necessary assistance in revisions of the early
drafts. Esther Tepper and Jane Gurin helped review the
Guide in its final revisions, to make sure the document
was written in easy-to-understand language.
The original work which provided the foundation for the
project was performed under a contract with Battelle
Memorial Institute (No. 68-02-4294) by Dr. Dale Keyes
and Dr. Jean Chesson, under the direction of Edie
Sterrett and Cindy Stroup of the EPA Exposure
Evaluation Division. They prepared the first drafts of
the document and were instrumental in establishing its
final format.
EPA staff also gratefully acknowledge the work of staff
from the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI).
Through a cooperative agreement with EPA they
served as the overall project coordinator and provided
thoughtful technical guidance throughout this entire
process. The GTRI team also developed several key
sections of the Guide.
This publication was refined through a peer review
meeting held in October 1988 in Washington, DC, and
by a series of comment periods provided through May
1990. The following individuals gave their time and
provided comments:
John Biechman, Safe Buildings Alliance
Wolfgang Brandner, U.S. EPA Region VII
Frank Bull, Bull, Brown & Kilgo Architects
Eva Clay The Environmental Institute
William Cobbs, U.S. General Services
Mark Demyanek, Georgia Tech Research
Michael Duffy, Service Employees International
Paul Fidducia, Winston and Strawn
Eugene Fisher, Association of Wall and Ceiling
Douglas Greenaway Consultant (formerly,
Building Owners and Managers Association
David Harris, National Institute of Building
Steve Hays, Gobbell Hays Partners
Joseph Hopkins, U.S. Department of Energy
David Mayer, Georgia Tech Research Institute
Richard Mendes, New York City Department of
Environmental Protection
Michael Miles, Tishman Spyer Properties
Roger Morse, ENTEK Environmental and
Technical Services, Inc.
Robert Navratil, RREEF Funds, Construction
and Engineering
Anthony Restaino, U.S. EPA Region V
Richard Roth, Social Security Administration
Sims ROy, U.S. EPA, Office of Air Quality
Planning and Standards
Scott Schneider, Workers’ Institute for
Occupational Safety and Health
Henry Singer, U.S. General Services
Thomas Warren, Rose Associates, Inc.
In addition to these individuals, the EPA acknowledges
the contribution of the Policy Dialogue Group on
Asbestos in Public and Commercial Buildings, which
met several times during 1989–1990. The purpose of
this multidisciplinary group was to identify the problems associated with asbestos in public and commercial
buildings and to develop policy recommendations for
solving these problems. Many comments raised by the
Dialogue Group in the area of asbestos management
were incorporated into this document.
In February 1988, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommended
to Congress that the Agency work during the next three years to enhance the nation’s technical
capability in asbestos by helping building owners better select and apply appropriate asbestos control
and abatement actions in their buildings. The publication of this guidance document is EPA’s most
extensive effort to date to carry out that recommendation. In fact, Managing Asbestos In Place is
the most comprehensive asbestos guide published by EPA since the Agency expanded and updated
Guidance for Controlling Asbetos-Containing Materials in Buildings (also known as the Purple
Book) in June 1985. Based on the insights and recommendations of nationally recognized asbestos
experts, this new guide, along with a new operations and maintenance work practices manual
expected to be available in 1991, provides “state-of-the-art” instruction to building owners to help
them successfully manage asbestos-containing materials in place.
Managing Asbestos in Place does not supplant the
1985 Purple Book as EPA’s principal asbestos guidance
document. Rather, based on our experience since 1985,
it expands and refines the Purple Book’s guidance for a
special operations and maintenance (O&M) program.
In particular, the guide more strongly emphasizes the
importance of in-place management. The guide’s purpose is two-fold. First, it offers building owners the
more detailed and up-to-date instruction they need to
carry out a successful O&M program. Second, it
informs building owners, lenders, and insurers that a
properly conducted O&M program can in many cases
be as appropriate an asbestos control strategy as
removal. Furthermore, in some cases, an O&M program is more appropriate than other asbestos control
strategies, including removal.
Emphasizing the importance and effectiveness of a
good O&M program is a critical element of EPA’s
broader effort to put the potential hazard and risk of
asbestos exposure in proper perspective. That effort
centers around communicating the following jive facts,
which EPA hopes will help calm the unwarranted fears
that a number of people seem to have about the mere
presence of asbestos in their buildings and discourage
the spontaneous decisions by some building owners to
remove all asbestos-containing material regardless of its
FACT ONE: Although asbestos is
hazardous, the risk of asbestos-related
disease depends upon exposure to
airborne asbestos fibers.
In other words, an individual must breathe asbestos
fibers in order to incur any chance of developing an
asbestos-related disease. How many fibers a person
must breathe to develop disease is uncertain. However,
at very low exposure levels, the risk maybe negligible or
FACT TWO: Based upon available data,
the average airborne asbestos levels in
buildings seem to be very low. Accordingly,
the health risk to most building occupants
also appears to be very low.
A 1987 EPA study found asbestos air levels in a small
segment of Federal buildings to be essentially the same
as levels outside these buildings. Based on that limited
data, most building occupants (i.e., those unlikely to
disturb asbestos-containing building materials) appear
to face only a very slight risk, if any, of developing an
asbestos-related disease.
FACT THREE: Removal is often not a
building owner's best course of action to
reduce asbestos exposure. In fact, an
improper removal can create a dangerous
situation where none previously existed.
By their nature, asbestos removals tend to elevate the
airborne level of asbestos fibers. Unless all safeguards
are properly applied, a removal operation can actually
increase rather than decrease the risk of asbestosrelated disease.
FACT FOUR: EPA only requires asbestos
removal in order to prevent significant
public exposure to airborne asbestos
fibers during building demolition or
renovation activities.
Asbestos removal before the wrecking ball swings into
action is appropriate to protect public health. At other
times, EPA believes that asbestos removal projects,
unless well-designed and properly performed, can
actually increase health risk.
FACT FIVE: EPA does recommend a proactive, in-place management program
whenever asbestos-containing material is
As this guide will explain in some detail, in-place
management does not mean “do nothing.” It means
having a program to ensure that the day-to-day management of the building is carried out in a manner that
minimizes release of asbestos fibers into the air, and
ensures that when asbestos fibers are released, either
accidentally or intentionally proper control and cleanup
procedures are implemented. As such, it may be all that
is necessary to control the release of asbestos fibers,
until the asbestos-containing material in a building is
scheduled to be disturbed by renovation or demolition
Why Is Asbestos a Problem?
Introduction: Asbestos in Buildings
This U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guide is primarily directed to owners and
managers of office buildings, shopping centers, apartment buildings, hospitals, and similar facilities
which may contain asbestos materials. Managers of industrial plants and other types of structures
may need to supplement this information with additional specialized guidance. This document gives
building owners, managers, workers, and other key building staff basic information on how to develop
and carry out high-quality operations and maintenance programs for managing asbestos in place to
safeguard the health of all building occupants. An operations and maintenance (O&M) program can
be defined as a formulated plan of training, cleaning, work practices, and surveillance to maintain
asbestos-containing materials (ACM) in good condition.
In this document you will find the following information:
The objectives of an O&M program, and an
indication of the scope of O&M activities
(Chapter 2);
Basic steps to take before starting an O&M
program, including an initial survey and evaluation of ACM (Chapter 3);
How to implement and manage the program,
including some basic cost considerations
(Chapter 3);
O&M work practices that protect both
workers and the general building environment
(Chapter 4);
Recordkeeping suggestions and requirements
(a section of Chapter 4);
Training recommendations and requirements
for workers performing O&M activities (Chapter 5); and
An overview of federal regulations, including
those affecting O&M programs (Chapter 6).
In addition, the Appendices provide other useful information, including a glossary of useful terms, and
contacts for additional assistance.
There are steps which a building
owner can take to prevent asbestos fiber releases or resuspension of already-released fibers, or control fiber releases
quickly and safely if they occur. O&M programs are
designed to achieve both these goals. This guide’s
purpose, therefore, is to inform building owners about
how to develop, implement and manage effective O&M
programs, and to encourage their use.
How O&M
Fits In
EPA recommends a pro-active, in-place management
program whenever asbestos is discovered. In many
buildings, a well-run O&M program may be all that is
necessary to control the release of asbestos fibers until
the ACM in the building is abated through renovation or
demolition activities. Also, an emergency repair to
equipment or building services, or an unexpected
incident such as ACM falling from a surface could
necessitate a different control strategy However, barring such events, if ACM is properly managed, release of
asbestos fibers into the air is minimized. The exposure
to asbestos fibers, and therefore the risk of asbestosrelated disease, can be reduced to a negligible level for
all building occupants.
An O&M program
can be defined
as a formulated
plan of training,
cleaning, work
practices, and
to maintain
materials in
good condition.
An O&M program may also provide an effective, less
costly alternative to wholesale removal operations.
Some additional cost-related considerations are discussed in Chapter 3.
The EPA National Emission Standards for Hazardous
Air Pollutants (NESHAP) regulations on asbestos may
require ACM removal prior to renovation and/or
demolition projects, to prevent significant asbestos
releases into the air (see Chapter 6). Additionally
removal of some ACM in a building will be necessary if
the material has been damaged beyond repair. However,
at other times, removal is often not a building owner’s
best course of action to reduce asbestos exposure.
(Extraneous factors –for example, difficulty in obtaining insurance, or obtaining financing relative to a real
estate transaction-may actually represent the driving
forces in a decision to remove all ACM, rather than a
health-based need for removal.) In fact, unless all
safeguards are properly applied by trained, experienced
individuals, removing ACM can actually increase building occupants’ risk of asbestos-related disease.
The Asbestos
Asbestos fibers can cause serious health problems. If in-
haled. they can cause diseases
which disrupt the normal functioning of the lungs.
Three specific diseases–asbestosis (a fibrous scarring
of the lungs), lung cancer, and mesothelioma (a cancer of
the lining of the chest or abdominal Cavity) -have been
linked to asbestos exposure. These diseases do not
develop immediately after inhalation of asbestos fibers;
it may be 20 years or more before symptoms appear.
In general, as with cigarette smoking and the inhalation
of tobacco smoke, the more asbestos fibers a person
inhales, the greater the risk of developing an asbestosrelated disease. Most of the cases of severe health
problems resulting from asbestos exposure have been
experienced by workers who held jobs in industries such
as shipbuilding, mining, milling, and fabricating, where
they were exposed to very high levels of asbestos in the
air, without benefit of the worker protections now
afforded by law Many of these same workers were also
smokers. These employees worked directly with asbestos materials on a regular basis and, generally for
long periods of time as part of their jobs. Additionally
there is an increasing concern for the health and safety
of construction, renovation, and building maintenance
personnel, because of possible periodic exposure to
elevated levels of asbestos fibers while performing their
Whenever we discuss the risk posed by asbestos, we
must keep in mind that asbestos fibers can be found
nearly everywhere in our environment (usually at very
low levels). There is, at this time, insufficient information concerning health effects resulting from low-level
asbestos exposure, either from exposures in buildings
or from our environment. This makes it difficult to
accurately assess the magnitude of cancer risk for
building occupants, tenants, and building maintenance
and custodial workers. Although in general the risk is
likely to be negligible for occupants, health concerns
remain, particularly for the building’s custodial and
maintenance workers. Their jobs are likely to bring
them into close proximity to ACM, and may sometimes
require them to disturb the ACM in the performance of
maintenance activities. For these workers in particular,
a complete and effective O&M program can greatly
reduce asbestos exposure. This kind of O&M program
can also minimize asbestos exposures for other building
occupants as well.
The term “asbestos” describes
six naturally occurring fibrous
minerals found in certain types of
rock formations. Of that general group, the minerals
chrysotile, amosite, and crocidolite have been most
commonly used in building products. When mined and
processed, asbestos is typically separated into very thin
fibers. When these fibers are present in the air, they are
normally invisible to the naked eye. Asbestos fibers are
commonly mixed during processing with a material
which binds them together so that they can be used in
many different products. Because these fibers are so
small and light, they may remain in the air for many
hours if they are released from ACM in a building. When
fibers are released into the air they may be inhaled by
people in the building.
What is
Asbestos became a popular commercial product because it is strong, won’t burn, resists corrosion, and
insulates well. In the United States, its commercial use
began in the early 1900’s and peaked in the period from
World War II into the 1970’s. Under the Clean Air Act of
1970 the EPA has been regulating many asbestoscontaining materials which, by EPA definition, are
materials with more than 1 percent asbestos. The
Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s
(OSHA) asbestos construction standard in section K,
“Communication of hazards to employees," specifies
labeling many materials containing 0.1% or more
asbestos. In the mid-1970’s several major kinds of
asbestos materials, such as spray-applied insulation,
fireproofing, and acoustical surfacing material, were
banned by EPA because of growing concern about
health effects, particularly cancer, associated with
exposures to such materials.
In July 1989, EPA promulgated the Asbestos Ban and
Phasedown Rule. The rule applies to new product
manufacture, importation, and processing, and essentially bans almost all asbestos-containing products in
the United States by 1997. This rule does not require
removal of ACM currently in place in buildings.
In February 1988, the
EPA released a report
titled EPA Study of Asbestos-Containing Materials in Public Buildings: A Report to Congress. EPA
found that “friable” (easily crumbled) ACM can be
Where is Asbestos
Likely to be Found
in Buildings?
found in an estimated 700,000 public and commercial
buildings. About 500,000 of those buildings are believed
to contain at least some damaged asbestos, and some
areas of significantly damaged ACM can be found in over
half of them.
According to the EPA study significantly damaged ACM
is found primarily in building areas not generally
accessible to the public, such as boiler and machinery
rooms, where asbestos exposures generally would be
limited to service and maintenance workers. Friable
ACM, if present in air plenums, can lead to distribution
of the material throughout the building, thereby possibly exposing building occupants. ACM can also be found
in other building locations.
ACM which is in poor
physical condition.
Under a proper operations and maintenance program, corrective action would
normally prevent
deterioration of the
Asbestos in buildings has been commonly used for
thermal insulation, fireproofing, and in various building
materials, such as floor coverings and ceiling tile,
cement pipe and sheeting, granular and corrugated
paper pipe wrap, and acoustical and decorative treatment for ceilings and walls. Typically it is found in pipe
and boiler insulation and in spray-applied uses such as
fireproofing or sound-deadening applications.
The amount of asbestos in these products varies widely
(from approximately 1 percent to nearly 100 percent).
The precise amount of asbestos in a product cannot
always be accurately determined from labels or by
asking the manufacturer. Nor can positive identification
of asbestos be ascertained merely by visual examination. Instead, a qualified laboratory must analyze
representative samples of the suspect material. Appendix G contains a sample list of some suspect materials.
Intact and undisturbed
asbestos materials do
not Dose a health risk.
The mere presence of asbestos in-a building does not
mean that the health of building occupants is endanWhen is Asbestos
a Problem?
gered. ACM which is in good condition, and is not
somehow damaged or disturbed, is not likely to release
asbestos fibers into the air. When ACM is properly
managed, release of asbestos fibers into the air is
prevented or minimized, and the risk of asbestos-related
disease can be reduced to a negligible level.
However, asbestos materials can become hazardous
when, due to damage, disturbance, or deterioration
over time, they release fibers into building air. Under
these conditions, when ACM is damaged or disturbed–
for example, by maintenance repairs conducted without
proper controls — elevated airborne asbestos concentrations can create a potential hazard for workers and
other building occupants.
ACM with sound
structural integrity
on the exterior of a
domestic hot water
tank. Note that the
insulation jacketing
is intact and there
is no evidence of
Chapter Summary
This document, directed to owners and managers of office buildings and similar facilities, should help
lay the ground work for developing and implementing effective operations and maintenance programs.
Major highlights in this section have focused on background information concerning asbestos and
have touched on the current asbestos-in-buildings situation. Important points to remember are the
● Inhalation of asbestos fibers has been shown to
cause asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma. Much of our knowledge of these
health effects has come primarily from studies
of workers exposed routinely to very high levels
of asbestos in their jobs,
● Information health effects of low-level
asbestos exposure is less certain; custodial/
maintenance workers who sometimes disturb
asbestos as part of their job would benefit from
properly executed O&M programs.
● Three of the six naturally occurring asbestos
minerals, chrysotile, amosite, and crocidolite,
have been most commonly used in building
● Asbestos became a popular commercial product because of its strength, heat resistance,
corrosion resistance, and thermal insulation
● Asbestos-containing materials (ACM) are regulated by EPA, OSHA, and the Consumer
Product Safety Cornmission (CPSC), and individual state and local agencies.
● Friable ACM can be found in about 700,000
public and commercial buildings. Many areas
where asbestos is found are not accessible to
the general public.
● Some common uses of asbestos have included
pipe/boiler insulation, spray-applied fireproofing, floor and ceiling tile. cement pipe/sheeting
and paper pipe wrap.
● Positive identification of asbestos requires
laboratory analysis; information on labels or
visual examination only is not sufficient.
● Intact, undisturbed materials generally do not
pose a health risk; they may become hazardous
when damaged, disturbed, or deteriorated over
time and release fibers into building air.
What Is an O&M Program?
Purpose and Scope of an Operations and
Maintenance Program
Purpose of O&M
The principal objective of an O&M program is to minimize exposure of all building occupants to
asbestos fibers. To accomplish this objective, an O&M program includes work practices to (1)
maintain ACM in good condition, (2) ensure proper cleanup of asbestos fibers previously released,
(3) prevent further release of asbestos fibers, and (4) monitor the condition of ACM.
Scope of an O&M Program
An effective O&M program should address all types of
ACM present in a building. ACM that maybe managed
as part of an O&M program in buildings can be
classified in one of the following categories:
Surfacing Material: Examples include
ACM sprayed or troweled onto surfaces, such
as decorative plaster on ceilings or acoustical
ACM on the underside of concrete slabs or
decking, or fireproofing materials on structural members.
Thermal System Insulation (TSI): Examples include ACM applied to pipes, boilers,
tanks, and ducts to prevent heat loss or gain,
or condensation.
Miscellaneous ACM: Examples include
asbestos-containing ceiling or floor tiles, textiles, and other components such as asbestoscement panels, asbestos siding and roofing
The O&M program, when developed and implemented
in a particular facility should include specific direction
on how to deal with each of these general categories of
ACM. Specified O&M work practices and procedures
should be employed by trained personnel during building cleaning, maintenance, renovation, and general
operational activities that may involve surfacing, thermal, or miscellaneous ACM. Some elaboration of O&M
work practices and procedures is found in Chapter 4.
The O&M program can be divided into three types of
● those which are unlikely to involve any direct
contact with ACM;
● those which may cause accidental disturbance
of ACM;
● those which involve relatively small disturbances of ACM.
The first type may involve routine cleaning of shelves
and counter tops or other surfaces in a building
(provided ACM debris is not present). Generally such
An example of sprayapplied surfacing
ACM on a metal deck
above a suspended
An example of asbestos-containing
thermal system insulation on pipes in a
building’s mechanical
activities would not be expected to disturb ACM. The
second type of project could include maintenance work
above a suspended ceiling in an area that may have
surfacing ACM overhead. The third type of project—
small-scale, shor-duration maintenance, repair, or
installation projects involving minor disturbances of
ACM – includes activities such as installation of new
light fixtures on or in an ACM ceiling. A single glovebag
operation to remove a small amount of ACM to repair a
pipe in a boiler room is another example of intentional
small-scale, short-duration disturbance.
The purpose of an operations and Maintenance
Program is to minimize exposure of all building
occupants to asbestos fibers. Through supervised work practices, ACM can be managed in
place. Important points to remember are:
ACM can be classified into three categories:
● Surfacing Material
● Thermal System Insulation (TSI)
● Miscellaneous Material
O&M Programs can be divided into three types of
● Unlikely to involve direct contact with ACM.
● Accidental disturbance of ACM.
Larger projects involving more complex procedures for
the intentional removal of ACM are considered asbestos
abatement projects. These require asbestos control and
abatement procedures that are outside the scope of an
O&M program. Before taking action, building owners
should consult qualified professionals for advice and
alternative solutions. Guidance for building owners on
the management of abatement projects is included in
An example of an
EPA’s “Guidance for Controlling Asbestos-Containing
cement sheet product Materials in Buildings” June 1985, also known as the
(miscellaneous ACM). “Purple Book.”
● Small-scale, short-duration maintenance or
repair activity which may involve intentional
disturbance of ACM.
How Does the Program Start?
Laying the Foundation for an Effective O&M Program
A comprehensive asbestos control program
for a building should include these basic steps:
● Appoint an Asbestos Program Manager and
develop an organizational policy
● Conduct a physical and visual inspection of the
building and take bulk samples of suspect
materials to determine if ACM is present,
establish an ACM inventory and assess the
ACM’s condition and potential for disturbance.
● If ACM is located, develop an O&M program,
based on the inspection and assessment data.
l Implement and manage the O&M program
the job. If for some reason this is not possible, the
building owner should strongly consider hiring a properly trained, experienced, and credentialed outside
consultant or firm to provide direction to the owner or
the Asbestos Program Manager.
In general, the Asbestos Program Manager should have
the authority to oversee all asbestos-related activities in
the building, including inspections, O&M activities, and
other abatement actions. The Asbestos Program Manager will either train building workers in O&M techniques or ensure that such worker training takes place.
In addition, he or she should oversee the custodial and
maintenance staffs, contractors, and outside service
vendors with regard to all asbestos-related activities.
● Select and implement abatement actions other
than O&M when necessary
This chapter provides information about each of these
basic steps. In addition, see Appendix F for a chart of
references outlining existing EPA guidance for each of
these steps.
The Asbestos Program Manager
The position of Asbestos Program Manager (APM) is
frequently held by the building engineer, superintendent, facilities manager, or safety and health director. In
a small organization, the building owner may have this
role. Regardless of who holds this position, EPA stresses
the need for the Asbestos Program Manager to be
properly qualified, through training and experience, and
to be actively involved in all asbestos-control activities.
EPA accreditation under the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA) or state certification as a
Building Inspector/Management Planner would be
typical of the requisite training.
If the person selected is not adequately prepared, he or
she should receive the training necessary to develop and
manage an asbestos control program prior to beginning
Building Inspection and
To determine whether an asbestos control and management program should be implemented, the owner
should have an initial building inspection performed to
locate and assess the condition of all ACM in the
building. A trained, experienced and qualified inspector,
who is able to perform the sampling of suspect ACM for
laboratory analysis, should conduct the inspection. If an
inspection is not performed, then certain suspect
materials should be assumed to contain asbestos, and
treated accordingly (Refer to Appendix G for a sample
list of suspect ACM.)
To determine
whether an
asbestos control
and management
program should
be implemented,
the owner should
have an initial
performed to
locate and assess
the condition of
all ACM in the
EPA guidance on how to take “bulk” samples of suspect
ACM is contained in several publications (see Appendix
H) and from EPA Regional Asbestos Coordinators
(listed in Appendix D).
The building inspection by a qualified professional
serves as the basis for establishing an effective overall
plan for dealing with the asbestos in the building. The
inspector should advise the owner and the Asbestos
ant should develop the O&M program. The written
O&M program should state clearly the O&M policies
and procedures for that building, identify and describe
the administrative line of authority for that building, and
should clearly define the responsibilities of key participants, such as the Asbestos Program Manager and
custodial and maintenance supervisors and staff. The
written O&M program should be available and understood by all participants involved in the management
and operations of the building.
In general, the O&M program developed for a particular building should include the O&M program elements
discussed in the next chapter. However, the building
owner should make sure that the O&M program
developed is site-specific and tailored for the building.
The O&M program should take into account use,
function, and design characteristics of a particular
Implementing and Managing
an W&M Program
A properly trained
and protected building inspector collecting a bulk sample of
suspected asbestoscontaining thermal
system insulation.
program Manager of inspection findings. Of course, the
inspection may show that ACM is not present and that
an asbestos-control program is not required.
If ACM is found, the material’s characteristics, condition, quantity and location within the building, as well as
building use, will affect how the building owner should
deal with the ACM. For example, operations and
maintenance procedures may be appropriate and sufficient in a particular building for ACM in good condition.
But O&M procedures alone are not sufficient for ACM
that the inspector determines is significantly damaged,
and may not be sufficient for some types of ACM
situated in highly accessible areas; in these instances,
some form of full scale abatement — repair, encapsulation, enclosure, encasement, or removal – will be
necessary Removal of the ACM may also be appropriate
when performed in conjunction with major building
renovations, or as part of long-term building management policies (such as staged removal in conjunction
with renovation over the life of the building, as covered
by the EPA NESHAP requirements for removal before
demolition or renovation).
Developing an O&M Program
If ACM is found, the building owner should have an
O&M program developed as soon as possible. Either
the Asbestos Program Manager or a qualified consult-
A well-developed O&M program is ineffective unless
the building owner is committed to implementing it
properly The building owner should convey this commitment to key personnel involved in a building’s
management and operations — particularly the Asbestos program Manager and custodial and maintenance supervisors and staff. The O&M program’s
success is contingent upon key personnel understanding the O&M program and committing themselves to
implementing it effectively
To the greatest extent possible, the building owner
should incorporate the O&M program into the existing
system for managing a building’s operations. Each
building owner, therefore, will determine the appropriate organizational structure on a case-by-case basis.
Two possible arrangements are suggested in Figures 1
and 2 in Appendix C.
When managing an O&M program, the Asbestos
Program Manager should oversee all asbestos-related
activities. In instances where a building owner hires a
contractor to perform custodial and maintenance work,
the Asbestos Program Manager should ensure that the
contractor is qualified to conduct work that may involve
ACM. Before hiring a contractor, the Asbestos Program
Manager should investigate to determine whether the
contractor’s staff is qualified, trained and equipped to
deal with O&M asbestos activities. Thoroughly checking the references of a contractor is a good recommended practice.
The Asbestos Program Manager should also monitor
the work performed in the building by other contractors, such as electricians and plumbers, who might
inadvertently disturb ACM. Instituting a work permit
system, as discussed in the next chapter, may prevent
accidental disturbances of ACM. Under this system, a
contractor must receive a work permit from the
Asbestos Program Manager before commencing work.
At that time, the Asbestos Program Manager will
inform the contractor whether the project could disturb
ACM and provide any special instructions to make sure
the work is done properly Communication between the
Asbestos Program Manager and tenants occupying the
building is essential to prevent activities that might
compromise the O&M program.
In addition, the Asbestos Program Manager should
routinely and frequently check the work being performed in the building by contractors and custodial and
maintenance staff to see if their work is disturbing
ACM. By maintaining close surveillance over these
activities, the Asbestos Program Manager can help
ensure that work which may disturb ACM is being done
safely Tenants should be required (by legal agreement
or understanding) to notify the building owner or the
Asbestos Program Manager before conducting even
small planned renovations. This would help prevent
building tenants from unknowingly disturbing ACM. For
both the work permit system and the renovation
notification requirement, clear and effective communications to workers and tenants are crucial to the success
of the O&M management program.
The Asbestos Program Manager should periodically
review the written O&M plan to determine whether it
should be updated. For example, if all ACM were
removed from some areas of the building during a recent
renovation, or if some ACM was damaged, the O&M
program should be revised accordingly The O&M
program should remain in effect as long as there is ACM
present in the building.
The costs associated with
implementing and managing an O&M program may
vary significantly depending on the types-of ACM,
building-specific factors, actual O&M procedures
adopted, types of equipment used, and the useful life of
the building. Owners may find it more cost-effective to
continue a well-supervised and managed O&M program than to incur the costs of immediate, large-scale
removal. In addition to the direct costs of removal, other
costs related to ACM removal include moving building
occupants, arranging alternative space for building
occupants during the removal work, and restoring the
building after the removal is completed.
Clearly many factors enter into the decision. Only by
conducting a cost-effectiveness analysis of the longterm options (e.g., comparing (a) immediate removal
with (b) phased removal plus O&M with (c) removal just
before demolition plus lifetime O&M) will owners be
truly able to determine which option is most costeffective for their buildings. The prudent owner may
need to consult one or more qualified consultants or
firms for advice, if such expertise does not exist within
the owner’s organization,
Selecting and Implementing
Alternative Abatement Actions
In some instances, due to the condition of ACM or
upcoming building renovations, a building owner may
decide to take other abatement actions to deal with
ACM in the building. These response actions could
include encapsulation (covering the ACM with a sealant
to prevent fiber release), enclosure (placing an air-tight
barrier around the ACM), encasement (covering the
ACM with a hard-setting sealing material), repair, or
removal of the ACM. Qualified, trained, and experienced contractors should be used for any of these
actions. EPA’s Purple Book discusses most of these
alternatives in some detail. In general, repair, encapsulation, enclosure, and encasement, are intended to
help prevent the release of asbestos fibers. As aspects of
O&M, these techniques manage ACM in place. See
Appendix F of this document for additional federal
reference sources on asbestos response actions.
When determining which response alternative to select,
the building owner and Asbestos Program Manager
may consider seeking advice from qualified, independent consultants with specific training and experience in
asbestos management.
Asbestos consultants should have a background in
engineering, architecture, industrial hygiene, safety, or
a similar field. Experts who are Registered and/or with
Board Certified backgrounds are recommended. To
help ensure that no “conflict of interest” exists,
consultants should not be affiliated with the abatement
contractors who may be used on a recommended ACM
control project, nor with analytical laboratories which
perform sample analyses. As with other similar business decisions, building owners should interview several consultants and check references.
remodeling or
redecorating) of
buildings or
replacement of
utility systems
increase the
potential for
disturbing ACM.
Renovations (including remodeling or redecorating) of
buildings or replacement of utility system increases the
potential for disturbing ACM. Before conducting any
renovation or remodeling work, the building owner
should have the Asbestos Program Manager review
asbestos inspection and assessment records to determine where ACM may be located, visually reinspect the
area, and evaluate the likelihood that ACM will be
disturbed. Any suspect or assumed ACM that could be
disturbed during the renovation work should either be
sampled and analyzed to determine whether it contains
asbestos, or the work should be carried out as if the
materials did contain asbestos. The Asbestos Program
Manager should also ensure that no new ACM is
introduced into the building as part of the renovation
Removal of the ACM before renovation begins maybe
necessary in some instances. Removal is required by the
Asbestos NESHAP regulations for projects which
would break up more than a specified minimum amount
of ACM; specifically at least 160 square feet of surfacing
thermal system insulation which has sustained significant
damage in a mechanical/boiler room of a
or miscellaneous material or at least 260 linear feet of
thermal system insulation (40 CFR 61.145-147). Building owners and managers are encouraged to contact
their state or local health or environmental department
for further clarification of these requirements (also, see
Chapter 6 of this document). It is important to ensure
that new materials placed in the building do not contain
asbestos in order to comply with the recent EPA
Asbestos Ban and Phase Out rule (see Chapter 6).
In general, building owners should thoroughly consider
any decision to remove ACM. O&M, encapsulation,
encasement, enclosure, or repair may be viable alternatives to removal. Building owners should assess
these in-place management techniques carefully before
deciding to remove undamaged ACM.
Under certain circumstances, however, such as when
some ACM must be removed during building renovations, when the ACM has sustained a great deal of
damage, or ACM disturbance will be difficult to manage
properly the building owner may decide to remove ACM
in parts of the building.
When removal must occur, only qualified, trained and
experienced project designers and contractors should
be permitted to design and perform the work. Building
owners might consider contacting local, state, and
federal asbestos regulatory agencies to see if prospective contractors have received citations for violating
asbestos regulations in the past. In addition, if the
building owner and Asbestos Program Manager are not
properly qualified themselves, they should retain a
qualified and independent project designer and a project
monitor with training and experience in asbestos
abatement to oversee and ensure that the asbestos
abatement work is done safely. When these precautions
are taken, asbestos removal is more likely to proceed
safely and effectively
Proper completion of the ACM removal is best evaluated by means of the analytical procedures using
transmission electron microscopy (TEM). (These are
described in 40 CFR Part 763, Appendix A to Subpart
E.) Clearance protocols for statistically comparing
asbestos fiber levels inside the work area with outside
levels are available. If the measured levels inside are not
statistically higher than the average airborne asbestos
concentration measured outside the abatement area,
the cleanup is considered successful, and the space is
judged ready for reoccupancy (For reference, see
Appendix H, U.S. EPA “Guidelines for Conducting the
AHERA TEM Clearance Test . . . .")
Chapter Summary
Laying the foundation for a comprehensive asbestos control program for a building includes some
basic steps. Important points contained in this discussion are the following
An Asbestos Program Manager needs to be
properly qualified through training and experience, and be actively involved in all asbestos
control and disturbance activities.
An Asbestos program Manager should have
authority to oversee and to direct custodial/
maintenance staff and contractors with regard
to all asbestos-related activities.
The success of any O&M program lies in the
commitment by the building owner to implement it properly
When outside contractors are used for asbestos-related activities, their references and
training should be thoroughly checked and
their subsequent work monitored.
Periodically review written O&M programs.
An initial building inspection should be performed by a trained, qualified, experienced
inspector to locate and assess the condition of
all ACM in the building.
Alternatives or control options that may be
implemented under an O&M program include:
● enclosure
● encasement
● removal (minor)
The inspection results serve as the basis for
establishing an O&M program. O&M procedures may not be sufficient for certain ACM
that is significantly damaged or in highly
accessible areas.
An Asbestos Program Manager or qualified
consultant should develop the written O&M
program that is site-specific and tailored for
individual buildings. The O&M program
should take into account use, function and
design characteristics of a building.
The success
of any O&M
depends on the
building owner’s
commitment to
implement it
Removal of ACM before renovations may be
necessary in some instances. (See NESHAP
and State/Local regulations discussion in
Chapter 6.)
What Does an O&M Program
O&M Program Elements
To achieve its objectives, an O&M program should include seven elements. Although these should
appear in any O&M program, the extent of each will vary from program to program depending on
the building type, the type of ACM present, and the ACM’s location and physical condition. For
example, if only nonfriable ACM is present, minimal notification might be needed, and custodial or
maintenance staff would most likely have fewer work practices to be followed. If friable ACM is
present, a more detailed O&M program should be prepared and followed. Each of the first six
elements listed below is described in this chapter to provide an illustration of a basic O&M program.
The seventh program element, training of the Asbestos Program Manager and custodial and
maintenance staff, is very important. If staff are not adequately trained, the O&M program will not
be effective. Chapter 5 is devoted exclusively to O&M training topics.
A successful O&M program should include the following elements:
● Notification: A program to tell workers,
tenants, and building occupants where ACM is
located, and how and why to avoid disturbing
the ACM. All persons affected should be
properly informed.
If staff are
not adequately
trained, the O&M
program will not
be effective.
● Surveillance: Regular ACM surveillance to
note, assess, and document any changes in the
ACM’s condition.
● Controls: Work control/permit system to
control activities which might disturb ACM.
● Work Practices: O&M work practices to
avoid or minimize fiber release during activities
affecting ACM.
● Recordkeeping: To document O&M activities.
● Worker Protection: Medical and respiratory
protection programs, as applicable.
● Training: Asbestos Program Manager, and
custodial and maintenance staff training.
Informing Building Workers,
Tenants, and Other Occupants
Building owners should inform building workers, occupants, and tenants about the location and physical
condition of the ACM that they might disturb, and stress
the need to avoid disturbing the material. Occupants
should be notified for two reasons: (1) building occupants should be informed of any potential hazard in their
vicinity; and (2) informed persons are less likely to
unknowingly disturb the material and cause fibers to be
released into the air.
Building owners can inform occupants about the
presence of ACM by distributing written notices,
posting signs or labels in a central location where
affected occupants can see them, and holding awareness or information sessions. The methods used may
depend on the type and location of the ACM, and on the
number of people affected. Some states and localities
have “right-to-know” laws which may require that all
occupants, workers, and visitors in buildings with ACM
be informed that asbestos is present.
In service and maintenance areas (such as boiler
rooms), signs such as “Caution — Asbestos — Do Not
Disturb” placed directly adjacent to thermal system
insulation ACM will alert and remind maintenance
workers not to inadvertently disturb the ACM. In most
cases, all boilers, pipes, and other equipment with ACM
in service areas where damage may occur should have
prominent warning signs placed next to the ACM. As an
alternative, color coding can be used to identify the
ACM in certain situations provided that all potentially
involved parties understand the coding system.
Information sessions reinforce and clarify written
notices and signs, and provide an opportunity to answer
questions. All employees and tenants or tenant representatives likely to disturb ACM should be included in
the notification program on a continuing basis. Building
owners should inform new employees about the presence of ACM before they begin work. Owners should
provide additional signs and information sessions in
languages other than English where a significant
number of workers, occupants, or visitors do not speak
English. It maybe necessary to make special provisions
for illiterate workers, such as providing clear verbal
information or signs, about potential hazards of disturbing ACM. and showing them where ACM is located.
The specific information given to types of building
occupants will vary For example, since service workers
carry out certain tasks that office workers or tenants do
not perform, they should receive additional information. Most important, O&M workers should receive the
training necessary for them to perform their tasks
Whatever its form, the information given to building
occupants and workers should contain the following
points to the extent they reflect building conditions:
Routine maintenance
activities can cause
disturbance of ACM if
workers are not properly trained in operations and maintenance procedures.
Here, a worker carelessly contacts ACM,
possibly damaging it.
● Report any dust or debris that might come
from the ACM or suspect ACM, any change in
the condition of the ACM, or any improper
action (relative to ACM) of building personnel
to (name, location, and phone number of
Asbestos Program Manager).
● Cleaning and maintenance personnel are tak-
ing special precautions during their work to
properly clean up any asbestos debris and to
guard against disturbing ACM.
● All ACM is inspected periodically and addi-
tional measures will be taken if needed to
protect the health of building occupants.
● ACM has been found in the building and is
located in areas where the material could be
● The condition of the ACM, and the response
which is appropriate for that condition.
● Asbestos only presents a health hazard when
fibers become airborne and are inhaled. The
mere presence of ACM does not represent a
health hazard.
● The ACM is found in the following locations
(e.g., ceilings in Rooms 101 and G-323, walls in
the lobby, above suspended ceilings in the first
floor corridor, on columns in the main entry on
pipes in the boiler room).
● Do not disturb the ACM (e.g., do not push
furniture against the ACM, do not damage
● Report any evidence of disturbance or damage
of ACM to (name, location, and phone number
of Asbestos Program Manager).
It is important to undertake an honest and open
approach to the ACM notification procedure. Owners
should strive to establish clear lines of communication
with all building occupants regarding asbestos issues.
People who are informed of the presence, location and
condition of ACM in a building where they work or live,
who understand that the mere presence of ACM is not
necessarily hazardous to them, and who accept that
ACM can often be managed effectively in place, can be
An example of an
asbestos caution sign
placed directly on a
section of asbestoscontaining duct insulation. Signs such as
this help to ensure
that workers will not
inadvertently disturb
very helpful to the owner in eliminating or reducing
hysteria on the part of other less informed building
occupants. On the other hand, if occupants suspect the
building owner is not being honest about asbestos
activities in the building, that owner’s credibility maybe
questioned and the situation can become far more
difficult to manage. If and when asbestos incidents
occur, it is especially important for the building owner
to deal with occupants and contractors openly and
honestly, for that is the best way to maintain occupant/
tenant confidence in both the owner and the building's
asbestos program.
Visual reinspections
of asbestos materials
at regular intervals
can detect changes in
material condition.
Here, surfacing ACM
has delaminated from
a ceiling in a building
O&M routines can
keep small problems
from becoming big
ACM Surveillance
A visual reinspection
of all ACM should be
conducted at regular
intervals as part of the O&M program. Combined with
ongoing reports of changes in the condition of the ACM
made by service workers, the reinspection should help
ensure that any ACM damage or deterioration will be
detected and corrective action taken.
Reinspection and
Periodic Surveillance
According to recent EPA regulations covering schools
(the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act,
“AHERA”), an accredited inspector must reinspect
school buildings at least once every three years to
reassess the condition of ACM. The AHERA regulations for schools also require a routine surveillance
check of ACM every six months to monitor the ACM’s
condition. The AHERA Rule permits this surveillance
to be conducted by a trained school custodian or
maintenance worker. While these intervals are mentioned here as a guide, they may also be appropriate for
other buildings. The Asbestos Program Manager
should establish appropriate intervals, based on consultation with the building owner and any other qualified
professionals involved in the O&M program.
EPA recommends a visual and physical evaluation of
ACM during the reinspection to note the ACM’s
current condition and physical characteristics. Through
this reinspection, it is possible to determine both the
relative degree of damage and assess the likelihood of
future fiber release. Maintenance of a set of visual
records (photos or videotape) of the ACM overtime can
be of great value during reinspection.
Some asbestos consultants recommend examining settled dust for accumulations of asbestos fibers as another
surveillance tool in an O&M program. While no
universally accepted standardized protocols currently
exist for sampling and analysis of settled dust, positive
results (i.e., ACM is present in the dust) may indicate
the need for special cleaning of the affected area, or
other action. Because the results of this testing are
difficult to interpret and evaluate at this time, building
owners should carefully consider the appropriateness of
this testing to their situation.
As part of an O&M program, a carefully designed
air monitoring program to
detect airborne asbestos fibers in the building may provide useful supplemental
information when conducted along with a comprehensive visual and physical ACM inspection and reinspection program. If the ACM is currently in good condition,
increases in airborne asbestos fiber levels at some later
time may provide an early warning of deterioration or
disturbance of the material. In that way, supplemental
air monitoring can be a useful management tool. If an
owner chooses to use air monitoring in an “early
warning” context, a knowledgeable and experienced
individual should be consulted to design a proper
sampling strategy Appendix H contains a reference to a
useful guide to monitoring airborne asbestos, which can
be consulted for further discussion of this subject.
Supplement to
If supplemental air monitoring is done, a baseline
airborne asbestos fiber level should be established soon
after the O&M program is initiated Representative,
multiple air samples should be collected throughout the
building during periods of normal building operation.
This should be done over along enough period of time to
be representative of existing conditions, in order to
adequately characterize prevailing fiber levels in the
building. This air monitoring should supplement, not
replace, physical and visual inspection. Visual inspection can recognize situations and anticipate future
exposure (e.g., worsening water damage), whereas air
monitoring can only detect a problem after it has
occurred, and fibers have been released.
Note that the collection of air samples for supplementary evaluation should not use aggressive air sampling
methods. Aggressive sampling methods, in which air is
deliberately disturbed or agitated by use of a leaf blower
or fans, should be used at the completion of an asbestos
removal project when the building or area is unoc-
cupied, not for routine monitoring.
Work Control/Permit System
The most accurate and preferred method of analysis of
air samples collected under an O&M program would
require the use of transmission electron microscopy
(TEM). Phase contrast microscopy (PCM), which is
commonly used for personal air sample analysis and as a
screening tool for area air monitoring, cannot distinguish between asbestos fibers and other kinds of fibers
which may be present in the air. PCM analysis also
cannot detect thin asbestos fibers, and does not count
short fibers. TEM analysis is approximately ten times
more expensive than PCM analysis. However, the more
accurate information on actual levels of airborne
asbestos fibers should be more beneficial to the building
owner who elects to use supplemental air monitoring in
the asbestos management program. TEM analysis is
most reliably performed by laboratories accredited by
the National Institute for Standards and Technology
(NIST; see Appendix D for telephone number), and who
follow EPA's quality assurance guidelines. (Appendix H,
U.S. EPA, Dec. 1989, “Transmission Electron Microscopy Asbestos Laboratories: Quality Assurance
The O&M program should include a system to control
all work that could disturb ACM. Some building owners
have had success using a “work permit” program, which
requires the person requesting the work to submit a Job
Request Form to the Asbestos program Manager
(Appendix B, Form 2) before any maintenance work is
begun. The form gives the time and location of the
requested work, the type of maintenance needed, and
available information about any ACM in the vicinity of
the requested work. The contractor or other person
authorized to perform the work should be identified on
the work request.
Selection of a reliable and experienced air monitoring
firm and analytical laboratory is important, if the
building owner elects to conduct supplemental air
monitoring under the O&M program. A consultant
knowledgeable in air sampling and analysis protocols
can be contacted for recommendations if the building
owner or Asbestos Program Manager has limited
knowledge in this area.
Periodic air monitoring, conducted simultaneously with
the visual reinspection or surveillance, would then be
used to see if asbestos levels have changed relative to the
baseline. Some building owners may wish to present
current air monitoring results to building occupants in
addition to information regarding the physical reinspections. Although this supplemental use of air monitoring
as part of an O&M program may provide useful
information, it is likely to be very expensive, particularly
if the more accurate and recommended TEM analysis is
used. Use of only a small number of measurements or
measurements taken only at one time maybe misleading (i.e., overestimate or underestimate of fiber levels),
and can lead to inappropriate decisions.
It should be noted that some of the exposures of persons
to airborne asbestos fibers in buildings may result from
episodic events, such as repair work or the accidental
disturbance of the ACM or of ACM debris by maintenance activities inside the building. Air monitoring may
not be done frequently enough to include such episodic
events; this can lead to a misleading interpretation of air
sampling results. In particular, air sampling may underestimate the exposure of O&M workers and building
occupants. A good reference sourcebook for additional
information on air sampling and analysis for asbestos
fibers is “A Guide to Monitoring Airborne Asbestos in
Buildings” (see Appendix H).
An example of a
maintenance worker
conducting activities
near a friable
ceiling. Under a
proper permitting
system, the building
Asbestos Program
Manager would
evaluate and
authorize projects
such as this prior to
beginning work.
Upon receiving a pre-work Job Request Form, the
Asbestos Program Manager should take the following
Refer to written records, building plans and
specifications, and any building ACM inspection reports to determine whether ACM is
present in the area where work will occur. If
ACM is present, but it is not anticipated that
the material will be disturbed, the Asbestos
Program Manager should note the presence
of the ACM on the permit form and provide
additional instruction on the importance of
not disturbing the ACM.
If ACM is both present and likely to be
disturbed, the Asbestos Program Manager or
a designated supervisor qualified by training
or experience, should visit the site and
determine what work practices should be
instituted to minimize the release of asbestos
fibers during the maintenance activity
This determination should be recorded on the
Maintenance Work Authorization Form (see
example in Appendix B, Form 3), which is
then sent to the in-house maintenance supervisor or to the maintenance contractor to
authorize the work.
The Asbestos Program Manager should
make sure that a copy of both the request and
the authorization forms (if granted) are placed
in the permanent file.
Where the task is not covered by previously
approved standard work practices, the Asbestos Program Manager should make sure
that the appropriate work practices and
protective measures are used for the job.
For all jobs where contact with ACM is likely
the Asbestos Program Manager or a designated supervisor qualified by training or
experience should visit the work site when
the work begins to see that the job is being
performed properly For lengthy jobs where
disturbance of ACM is intended or likely,
periodic inspections should be made for the
duration of the project.
Asbestos Program Manager’s observa7 The
tions should be provided on an Evaluation of
Work Form (see Appendix B, Form 4). Any
deviation from standard and approved work
practices should be recorded immediately on
this form and the practices should be immediately corrected and reported to the Asbestos
Program Manager.
It is important
to undertake an
honest and open
approach in ACM
Upon completion of the work, a copy of the
evaluation form should be placed in the
permanent asbestos file for the building.
Building owners should consider using asbestos O&M
work control forms similar to those which already may
be in use for non-ACM work in their facilities, or
expanding the existing forms to include the content of
the request, approval, and evaluation forms illustrated in
Appendix B.
The O&M management system should also address
work conducted by outside contractors. Many building
owners contract for at least some custodial and maintenance services. A building’s asbestos work control/
permit system, as described above, should also cover
contract work.
● Written work practices must be submitted by
the vendor or contractor for approval or
modification by the Asbestos Program Manager. The vendor or contractor should then
agree to abide by the work practices as finally
accepted by the Asbestos Program Manager.
● Assurance that the contractor will use proper
work area isolation techniques, proper equipment, and sound waste disposal practices.
● Historical air monitoring data for representative examples of the contractor’s previous
projects, with emphasis on projects similar to
those likely to be encountered in the building.
● Provisions for inspections of the area by the
owner’s representative to ensure that the area
is acceptable for re-entry of occupants/tenants.
● A resume for each abatement contractor/
supervisor or maintenance crew chief, known
as the “competent person” in the OSHA
standard and EPA Worker Protection Rule.
● Criteria to be used for determining successful
completion of the work (i.e., visual inspections
and air monitoring).
● Any other information deemed necessary by
the owner’s legal counsel.
Notification to EPA (and other appropriate
agencies) if the abatement project is large
enough (see Chapter 6).
O&M Work Practices
● The O&M program focuses on a special set of
work practices for the custodial, maintenance,
and construction staff. The nature and extent
of any special work practices should be tailored
to the likelihood that the ACM will be disturbed
and that fibers will be released. In general, four
broad categories of O&M work practices are
At a minimum, contracts with service trades or
abatement companies should include the following
provisions to ensure that the service or abatement
workers can and will follow appropriate work practices:
● Proof that the contractor’s workers have been
Worker Protection Programs – These
work practices help ensure custodial and
maintenance staff are adequately protected
from asbestos exposure.
veillance, and worker training documentation
as required by OSHA, EPA and/or state regulatory agencies.
Basic O&M Procedures – Basic procedures are used to perform routine custodial
and maintenance tasks that may involve ACM.
● Notification to building tenants and visitors
Special O&M Cleaning Techniques –
Special techniques to cleanup asbestos fibers
on a routine basis.
properly notified about ACM in the owner’s
building and that they are properly trained and
accredited (if necessary) to work with ACM.
● Copies of respiratory protection, medical sur-
that abatement activity is underway (performed by owner).
Procedures for Asbestos Fiber Release
Episodes – If moderate to relatively large
amounts of ACM are disturbed, the building
owner should use these procedures to address
the hazard.
A brief synopsis of worker protection and O&M work
practices follows. (Note: A more detailed, technically
oriented O&M “work practices” manual specifically
addressing topics such as work practices, worker
protection, and specific information on how to carry
out O&M plans, is being developed, with publication
expected in 1991.)
Worker Protection
A worker protection
program includes engineering controls, personal exposure monitoring, medical surveillance, and
personal protection. While engineering controls are the
preferred method of worker protection, there are few
engineering control options available for O&M work.
This section discusses two key aspects of personal
protection: use of respiratory protection and protective
clothing for workers in an asbestos O&M program.
According to OSHA regulations (see Chapter 6), a
written respiratory protection program is necessary
whenever an O&M program specifies that service
workers wear respirators, or where respirators are
made available to employees. OSHA regulations also
require a respirator program whenever workers are
exposed, or are likely to be exposed, to fiber levels above
OSHA’S “permissible exposure limits” such as the
8-hour time weighted average (TWA) limit or the 30minute “excursion limit” (EL). The 8-hour TWA limit
and the EL are described in more detail in Chapter 6. In
addition, OSHA requires workers to wear special
protective clothing under the same circumstances.
respirators for protection against airborne asbestos
during “construction” activities, which include abatement, renovation, maintenance, repair, and remodeling.
Personal air sampling is not the same as area air
monitoring. Personal air sampling (required by OSHA)
is designed to measure an individual worker’s exposure
to fibers while the worker is conducting tasks that may
disturb ACM. The sampling device is worn by the
worker and positioned so that it samples air in the
worker’s breathing zone. In contrast, area (or ambient)
air sampling is conducted to get an estimate of the
numbers of airborne asbestos fibers present in a
building. It is used as an assessment tool in evaluating
the potential hazard posed by asbestos to all building
occupants. (See the previous discussion of area air
monitoring on page 14.)
When adequate care is taken to prevent or minimize and
control fiber release, routine, small-scale/short-duration maintenance or custodial tasks are not likely to
generate high levels of airborne asbestos compared to
large asbestos removal projects; and respirators which
filter breathing air may be used. OSHA, EPA, and
NIOSH are on record as not recommending
single use, disposable paper dust masks for use
against asbestos; in fact, OSHA has disallowed
their use against airborne asbestos fibers.
The options that may be used include:
● A half-face or full facepiece, negative pressure,
air-purifying respirator with replaceable highefficiency filters.
Pictured below are
different examples of
air-purifying, negative
pressure respirators
equipped with highefficiency cartridges
which can be used to
protect workers
against asbestos
exposure. On the left
are examples of halfmask facepieces
equipped with highefficiency cartridges,
and on the right are
examples of full
facepiece, highefficiency masks.
Respiratory Protection/Worker Protection Programs The selection of approved respirators, suitable
for the hazards to which the worker is exposed, is only
one aspect of a complete respiratory protection program. Other elements include written operating procedures for respirator use; outlining personnel responsibilities for respirator cleaning, storage, and repair;
medical examination of workers for respirator use;
training in proper respirator use and limitations;
respirator fit testing respirator cleaning and care; and
work-site supervision. All of these are described in
detail in the OSHA respirator standard, 29 CFR
1910.134. The O&M respirator program can be administered by the facility safety and health manager or the
Asbestos Program Manager, if properly qualified.
Proper respiratory protection is an integral part of all
custodial and maintenance activities involving potential
exposure to asbestos. When in doubt about exposure
during a certain work operation, building owners should
provide respiratory protection to custodial and maintenance workers. OSHA specifies general types of
● A half or full facepiece powered air-purifying
respirator (PAPR) with replaceable high-efficiency filters. This has a battery powered pump
which assists breathing and provides positive
pressure in the facepiece.
Appendix E contains more information on these topics,
and gives the minimum EPA-recommended levels of
respiratory protection to be provided during typical
O&M tasks.
For additional information on respirator programs,
respirator types, and respirator use, the building owner
or Asbestos Program Manager may want to use the
following references
● “Respiratory Protection An Employer’s Manual,” NIOSH, October 1978;
● “A Guide to Respirator Protection for the
Asbestos Abatement Industry” EPA/NIOSH,
OSHA respirator standard (29 CFR
OSHA asbestos regulations (29 CFR
1910.1001 and 1926.58);
● “Occupational Exposure Sampling Strategy
Manual; NIOSH #77-173, January 1977.
Pictured above are
two different types of
powered air-purifying
respirators (PAPR's)
equipped with highefficiency filters. On
the left is an example
of a tight fitting, full
facepiece PAPR, and
on the right is an
example of a loosefitting helmet style
Under the OSHA standards for asbestos, any employee
required to wear a negative pressure respirator can
request a powered air-purifying respirator, and the
employer is required to provide a fully functional and
approved unit, provided it will afford the worker at least
equal protection.
Currently only respirators approved by NIOSH and the
Mine Safety and Health Adminstration (MSHA) are
permitted for use. If they are air-purifying respirators,
the filtration device(s) must be rated as “high-efficiency”
Selecting the most appropriate respirator for each
O&M task requires knowledge of the levels of airborne
asbestos fibers and other possible air contaminants
generated by the task or likely to be present where the
task is performed. This knowledge is best gained
through personal air monitoring conducted during
worker performance of the actual task. (Obviously the
workers must have respiratory protection while this
initial personal air sampling is carried out.) In fact,
OSHA and EPA require air monitoring under certain
circumstances (see Chapter 6). To learn more about the
different types of respirators available and the degree of
protection they provide, see Appendix E. Owners may
also wish to contact the nearest OSHA office, a local
trained and qualified industrial hygienist (preferably
Certified), or an occupational health professional for
more information on respirators. The expertise of these
specialists should be used to ensure proper selection, fit
testing, and training of workers in respirator use.
Building owners and other facility managers may not be
familiar with some of the terms used in discussions of
respirators, airborne fiber levels, and related topics.
“Respirator Decision Logic," NIOSH, May
1987; and
“NIOSH Guide to Industrial Respiratory Protection” September 1, 1987.
Protective Clothing/Worker Protection Programs In addition to the use of respirators, some O&M
procedures may require workers to wear protective
clothing. Most often, protective clothing is disposable
and consists of coveralls, a head cover, and foot covers
made of a synthetic fabric which does not allow asbestos
fibers to pass through. This type of clothing prevents
workers’ regular clothing from becoming contaminated
with asbestos fibers. Contaminated clothing could be
taken home, creating a possible risk to the worker’s
family members.
OSHA and EPA regulations require workers to wear
protective clothing whenever they are exposed, or likely
to be exposed, to fiber levels above OSHA’s permissible
levels (see Chapter 6). It is important that workers be
properly trained in the use, removal and disposal of
protective clothing after use. All O&M activities may
not require the use of protective clothing. It is important
for the Asbestos Program Manager to assess this need
on a case-by-case basis.
Basic O&M procedures to minimize and/or contain asbestos fibers may include wet methods,
use of mini-enclosures, use of portable power tools
equipped with special local ventilation attachments, and
avoidance of certain activities, such as sawing, sanding,
Basic O&M
and drilling ACM. Maintenance activities can be divided
into three categories with regard to their potential for
disturbing ACM:
1 Those which are unlikely to involve any direct
disturbance of ACM; for example, cleaning
shelves or counter tops with a damp cloth.
To summarize, if in doubt about the possibility of
disturbing ACM during maintenance activities, adequate precautions should be taken to minimize fiber
release; these will protect workers as well as the
building environment. Basic O&M procedures, including use of wet methods and specially equipped tools,
should be used to protect building occupants.
Those which may cause accidental disturbance of ACM; for example, working on a
fixture near a ceiling with surfacing ACM.
Those which involve intentional small-scale
manipulation or disturbance of ACM; for
example, removing a small segment of TSI
ACM to repair a pipe leak.
The O&M program should include work practices for
each type of ACM that is present in the building
(surfacing, TSI, and miscellaneous) as well as for each
type and category of maintenance activity performed
(e.g., general cleaning, electrical work, plumbing).
Special work practices such as wet wiping, area
isolation, and HEPA vacuuming, and the use of personal
protective equipment such as respirators and protective
clothing, may be needed where disturbance of ACM is
likely. The need for these practices varies with the
situation. For example, removing light fixtures located
near surfacing ACM may disturb the material and might
involve the use of special cleaning, possibly area
isolation, and respiratory protection. Periodic emptying
of a trash can near heavily encapsulated asbestoscontaining plaster may not disturb the material at all, so
no special work practices would generally be necessary
These work practices and procedures are intended to
ensure that disturbance of any ACM during O&M
activities should be minimized, or carried out under
controlled conditions when the disturbance is required
by the nature of a specific O&M task.
In addition, ACM may readily release asbestos fibers
into the air when certain mechanical operations are
performed directly on it. For example, fiber releases can
occur when workers are drilling, cutting, sanding,
breaking, or sawing vinyl asbestos floor tile.
The action of drilling, cutting, abrading, sanding,
chipping, breaking, or sawing is the critical factor here,
since it is likely to cause a release of fibers. Maintenance
or repair operations involving those actions should be
eliminated or carefully controlled with basic O&M
procedures in order to prevent or minimize asbestos
fiber release.
Certain activities that occur in the vicinity of ACM can
also cause damage which may result in asbestos fiber
release. For example, maintenance and custodial stroll
may damage ACM accidentally with broom handles,
ladders, and fork lifts while performing other tasks.
Activities performed in the vicinity of ACM should
always be performed cautiously to prevent fiber release.
O&M Cleaning
Special cleaning practices
are appropriate for a building
with exposed surfacing or
thermal system insulation ACM, especially if the ACM
is friable. If gradual deterioration or damage of ACM has
occurred or is occurring, asbestos-containing dust or
debris could be present. If the building inspection has
determined that asbestos-containing dust or debris is
present in some areas, then the O&M program should
include special cleaning practices to collect residual
asbestos dust. Routinely cleaning floors using wet
methods is an example of one such practice. Custodial
and maintenance workers in the course of normal work
can also identify and report areas which are in need of
special cleaning or repair. Special cleaning techniques
should supplement, not replace, repair or abatement
actions for damaged, friable ACM. The cleaning
program should include an initial cleaning followed, as
needed, by subsequent periodic or episodic cleanings.
Building owners and custodial and maintenance staff
should ensure that special O&M cleaning is done
correctly Proper cleaning is important for two reasons:
The use of improper techniques to clean up
asbestos debris caused by previous deterioration or damage may result in widespread
contamination, and potentially increase airborne asbestos fiber levels in the building.
Improper cleaning may cause damage to the
ACM, thus releasing more airborne asbestos
If in doubt about
the possibility
of disturbing
ACM during
should be taken
to minimize
fiber release.
O&M cleaning will involve the use of wet
cleaning or wet-wiping practices to pick up asbestos
fibers. Dry sweeping or dusting can result in asbestos
fibers being re-suspended into the building’s air and
therefore should not be used. Once wet cloths, rags, or
mops have been used to pickup asbestos fibers, they
should be properly discarded as asbestos waste while
still wet. They should not be allowed to dry out, since
the collected fibers might be released at some later time
when disturbed. The use of special vacuum cleaners,
commonly referred to as HEPA vacuums, may be
preferable to wet cleaning in certain situations. These
vacuums are equipped with filters designed to remove
very small particles or fibers — such as asbestos — by
filtering those particles from the air passing through the
vacuum. Since the exhaust air from an ordinary vacuum
cleaner is not filtered sufficiently it is possible for tiny
asbestos fibers to pass through the filter and back into
the building air.
procedures are
generally needed
to minimize the
spread of fibers in
the building after
asbestos fiber
release occurs.
Here, a worker uses
a HEPA vacuum
(backpack type) to
clean ACM debris
from one of several
carpeted areas in a
room where surfacing
material had fallen.
It is important for O&M workers to use caution when
emptying HEPA vacuums and changing the filters.
Exposures could result from such activities. Workers
should move the HEPA vacuum to a physically isolated
area of the facility and put on proper personal protective
equipment before emptying the dust and debris into
properly labeled, sealed, and leak-tight containers for
disposal as asbestos-containing waste. When custodial
workers do not work with ACM, trained maintenance
workers can be used to empty the HEPA vacuums and
change their filters. Decisions regarding special cleaning practices should be based on the building inspection
and ACM assessment data, including the potential for
ACM disturbance. In general, the building would not
need special O&M cleaning when the building contains
only nonfriable (not easily crumbled) ACM; ACM which
has been encapsulated, encased, or enclosed behind airtight barriers; or ACM known to be undamaged/
undisturbed since the last special cleaning. Furthermore, where ACM is confined to a single room or area,
special cleaning of just that area rather than other parts
of the building may be sufficient.
If ACM has been released onto a carpeted area of a
building, it may not always be possible to adequately
clean the carpeted area. “Steam" cleaning and HEPA
vacuuming methods are sometimes employed for this
purpose. A preliminary study carried out by EPA in
1989 showed that hot water vacuums were more
effective in carpet cleaning than HEPA vacuums, under
the test conditions. Further field studies are planned to
confirm these findings.
For carpets, successful cleaning will likely depend on
factors such as the amount of ACM released onto the
carpet, how long the situation has existed, traffic over
the area, as well as the structure and composition of the
carpet itself. It is prudent to evaluate individual
situations on a case-by-case basis. The Asbestos
program Manager should consider the need for workers
engaged in cleaning asbestos fiber-contaminated carpets to wear proper respiratory protection. It may also
be prudent to arrange for this type of cleaning to be
done after normal working hours or when the facility is
less occupied. Additionally it maybe more cost effective
to properly dispose of contaminated carpets and other
fabrics as asbestos-containing waste if a permanent
asbestos control option is being undertaken in the
Where the ACM is damaged and located in an “air
plenum” – where fibers can be transported by the
heating, ventilation, or air conditioning (HVAC) system
throughout the building – special cleaning practices
may be extended to the entire building, including the
HVAC system itself.
Special procedures are
generally needed to rninimize the spread of fibers
throughout the building
after asbestos fiber releases occur, such as the partial
collapse of an ACM ceiling or wall. These procedures
are needed whether the ACM disturbance is intentional
or unintentional To provide building owners with some
guidance, under EPA regulations for schools a “major
fiber release” is defined as one involving more than
three square or linear feet of ACM. The procedures to
be followed will vary according to the site of the major
release episode, the amount of ACM affected, the
extent of fiber release from the ACM, the relationship of
the release area to the air handling systems, and
whether the release site is accessible to building
occupants. Depending on the severity of the episode,
asbestos abatement consultants and contractors may be
needed to develop a strategy for conducting the cleanup operations.
Procedures for
Asbestos Fiber
Release Episodes
In general, for major fiber releases, the area should be
isolated by closing doors and/or erecting temporary
barriers to restrict airflow as well as access to the site.
Signs should be posted as necessary immediately
outside the fiber release site to prevent persons not
involved in the cleanup operation from inadvertently
entering the area. If asbestos fibers could enter the
HVAC system, the system should be modified to prevent
fiber entry, or should be shut down and sealed off. The
final step should be to employ thorough cleanup
procedures to properly control the ACM, a careful visual
inspection, and final clearance air monitoring to verify
satisfactory cleanup.
Similar procedures can be used for much smaller fiber
release events: where the amount of ACM is on the
2 0
order of three square or linear feet or less. The HEPA
vacuuming, wet wiping, and worker protection procedures outlined in this guidance document, as well as
wetting ACM wastes and properly placing them in an
appropriate leak-tight container (such as a properly
labeled, 6-mil-thick plastic bag), are examples of some of
the procedures which could be used for both major and
minor fiber releases.
It is important to recognize that different levels of
training are needed for workers involved with fiber
release episodes. A major release will generally require
“asbestos abatement worker training,” rather than the
degree of training considered adequate for O&M
EPA suggests that building owners and Asbestos
Program Managers consult with state and local regulatory officials before establishing formal training procedures for each type of situation.
The following table should be useful in determining
when to apply certain O&M work practices in buildings.
The table illustrates the O&M work practices that
should be used by custodial and maintenance staff,
depending on the likelihood of ACM disturbance.
Summary of When to Apply Key O&M Work Practices
Likelihood of ACM Disturbance
Accidental Disturbance
Contact Unlikely
Intended or Likely
Management Responsibilities
Need Pre-Work Approval from Asbestos
Program Manager
Review by Program
Special Scheduling or Access Control
Initial, At Least
Shut Downl
Supervision Needed
HVAC System Modification
As Needed1
Area Containment
Drop cloths, Mini-enclosures
Y e s2
Available For Use
Personal Protection
Respiratory Protection
Protective Clothing
Review by Asbestos Program
Work Practices
Use of Wet Methods
Use of HEPA Vacuum
Available For Use
As Needed
Available For Use
As Needed
1) In the area where work takes place
2) Type of containment may vary. For example, small-scale, short-duration tasks may not require full containment.
EPA recommends
that building
owners make
available all
written elements
of the O&M
program to the
building’s O&M
staff as well as
to tenants and
other building
All the building asbestos management documents
discussed in this Guide (inspection and assessment
reports, O&M program plan, work practices and
procedures, respirator use procedures, fiber release
reports, application for maintenance work and work
approval forms, evaluations of work affecting ACM, and
reinspections/surveillance of ACM) should be stored in
permanent files. In addition, for employees engaged in
asbestos-related work, federal regulations (see Chapter
6) require that employers retain:
● personal air sampling records, for at least 30
years. Personal air samples are those collected
in the worker’s breathing zone during performance of work involving asbestos exposures.
● objective data used to qualify for exemptions
from OSHA’s initial monitoring requirements
for the duration of the exemption.
● medical records for each employee subject to
the medical surveillance program for the
duration of their employment plus 30 years.
● all employee training records for one year
beyond the last date of each worker’s employment.
In addition, OSHA requires that employers provide to
each employee their record of exposure and medical
surveillance under the Records Access Standard (29
CFR 1910.20) and the Hazard Communication Standard
(29 CFR 1910.1200). Seethe OSHA Construction Rule
(29 CFR 1926.58) or the EPA Worker Protection Rule
(40 CFR 763 Subpart G) for more details of recordkeeping requirements.
EPA recommends that building owners make available
all written elements of the O&M program to the
building’s O&M staff as well as to tenants and other
building occupants, if applicable. Building owners are
also encouraged to consult with their legal counsel
concerning appropriate recordkeeping strategies as a
standard part of their O&M programs. Additionally
state and local regulations may also require additional
recordkeeping procedures.
Chapter Summary
Although the elements discussed in this chapter should appear in any O&M program, the extent to
which each applies will vary depending on the building type, the type of ACM present, and the ACM's
location and physical condition. To achieve its objectives an O&M program should include the
A notification program to inform building
occupants, workers, and tenants about the
location of ACM and how to avoid disturbing
Periodic surveillance and reinspection of ACM
at regular intervals by trained workers or
properly trained inspectors. Air monitoring to
detect airborne asbestos fibers in the building
may provide useful supplemental information
when conducted along with a comprehensive
visual and physical ACM inspection/ reinspection program. Air samples are most accurately
analyzed using transmission electron microscopy (TEM).
A “work Control/permit” system, which some
building owners have used successfully to
control work that could disturb ACM. This
system requires the person requesting work to
submit a Job Request Form to the Asbestos
Program Manager before any work is begun.
O&M work practices to avoid or minimize fiber
release during activities affecting ACM.
Recordkeeping. OSHA and EPA have specific
requirements for workers exposed to asbestos.
What O&M Training Is
Types of Training
Training of custodial and maintenance workers is one of the keys to a successful O&M program. If
building owners do not emphasize the importance of well-trained custodial and maintenance
personnel, asbestos O&M tasks may not be performed properly This could result in higher levels of
asbestos fibers in the building air and an increased risk faced by both building workers and occupants.
OSHA and EPA require a worker training program for
all employees exposed to fiber levels (either measured
or anticipated) at or above the action level (0.1 f/cc,
8-hour time-weighted average– the TWA) and/or the
excursion limit (1.0 f/cc, 30-minute TWA—see Chapter
6). According to the EPA regulations governing schools,
all school stall custodial and maintenance workers who
conduct any activities that will result in the disturbance
of ACM must receive 16 hours of O&M training. Some
states and municipalities may also have specific training
requirements for workers who may be exposed to
asbestos, or who work in a building with ACM present.
With proper training, custodial and maintenance staff
can successfully deal with ACM in place, and greatly
reduce the release of asbestos fibers. Training sessions
should provide basic information on how to deal with all
types of maintenance activities involving ACM. However, building owners should also recognize that O&M
workers in the field often encounter unusual, “nontextbook” situations. As a result, training should
provide key concepts of asbestos hazard control. If these
concepts are clearly understood by workers and their
supervisors, workers can develop techniques to address
a specific problem in the field. Building owners who
need to provide O&M training to their custodial and
maintenance staff should contact an EPA environmental
assistance center (see Appendix D) or equally qualified
training organization for more information.
At least three levels of maintenance worker training can
be identified
LEVEL 1: AWARENESS TRAINING. For custodians involved in cleaning and simple maintenance tasks where ACM may be accidentally disturbed.
For example, fixing a light fixture in a ceiling covered
with surfacing ACM. Such training may range from two
to eight hours, and may include such topics as:
● Background information on asbestos.
● Health effects of asbestos.
● Worker protection programs.
● Locations of ACM in the building.
● Recognition of ACM damage and deterioration.
● The O&M program for that building.
● Proper response to fiber release episodes.
Training of
custodial and
workers is
one of the
keys to a
2 3
For workers who may conduct asbestos
For example, conducting a removal job, constructing an
enclosure, or encapsulating a surface containing ACM.
This work involves direct, intentional contact with
ACM. The recognized “abatement worker” training
courses approved by EPA or states, under the EPA
AHERA model accreditation plan for schools, which
involve 24 to 32 hours of training, would fulfill this level
of training.
If this level of training is provided to in-house staff, it
may save time and money in the long run to use these
individuals to perform such activities. This level of
training is much more involved than Levels 1 and 2,
although it should include some of the same elements
(e.g., health effects of asbestos). It will typically include
a variety of specialized topics, such as:
A properly protected
and trained worker
conducts a glovebag
removal job on a section of thermal system insulation. Under
a proper operations
and maintenance program, any worker involved in such activities would have Level
1 and 2 training.
maintenance workers involved in general
maintenance and asbestos material repair
2 4
For example, a repair or removal of a small section of
damaged TSI, or the installation of electrical conduit in
an air plenum containing ACM or ACM debris. Such
training generally involves at least 16 hours. This level of
training usually involves more detailed discussions of
the topics included in Level 1 training as well as:
This is an example
of a large-scale
asbestos removal
project (note missing
scaffold safety rails).
Such projects are well
beyond the scope of
an O&M program. The
EPA NESHAP regulations require that asbestos materials be
removed from buildings prior to demolition or renovation
when the asbestos
will be disturbed.
Federal, state, and local asbestos regulations.
Proper asbestos-related work practices.
Descriptions of the proper methods of handling
ACM, including waste handling and disposal.
Respirator use, care, and fit-testing.
Protective clothing donning, use, and handling.
Hands-on exercises for techniques such as
glovebag work and HEPA vacuum use and
Appropriate and proper worker decontamination
Pre-asbestos abatement work activities.
Work area preparation.
Establishing decontamination units.
Personal protection, including respirator selection, use, fit-testing, and protective clothing.
Worker decontamination procedures.
Safety considerations in the abatement work
A series of practical hands-on exercises.
Proper handling and disposal of ACM wastes.
The Asbestos Program Manager should consider conducting the training program for Levels 1 and 2 if he or
she has sufficient specific asbestos knowledge and
training. If the Asbestos Program Manager does not
conduct the training, the building owner should hire an
outside consultant or send workers to an appropriate
O&M training course. A trained (preferably Certified)
industrial hygienist or equally qualified safety and health
professional should conduct the training on respirator
use and fit-testing. A health professional should conduct
the training on health effects.
OSHA or EPA Regional Offices, as well as state and local
agencies and professional associations, may be able to
suggest courses or direct you to listings of training
providers for each of the three levels. Appendix D
provides the addresses and/or phone numbers for
OSHA, EPA, and EPA-sponsored training providers.
Where custodial and maintenance services are performed by a service company under contract, or where
some installation or repairs are performed by employees of trade or craft contractors and subcontractors, those workers may need to have training at level 1,
2, or 3 as appropriate for their work. The Asbestos
Program Manager or building owner should verify that
these employees receive appropriate training before
they begin any work.
In summary, good training is crucial to the success of an
O&M program. Strong support for O&M training by
the building owner should convince custodial and
maintenance workers that following the appropriate
work procedures is critical to protecting their own
health as well as the health of other building occupants.
Chapter Summary
Properly trained custodial and maintenance workers are critical to a successful O&M program. The
following items are highlighted training requirements:
● OSHA and EPA require worker training program for all employees exposed to fiber levels
at or above the action level (0.1 f/cc, 8-hr. TWA)
and/or the excursion limit (1.0 f/cc, 30-minute
TWA – see Chapter 6).
● Some states and municipalities may have
specific worker training requirements.
● At least three levels of maintenance worker
training can be identified:
Level 2 Special O&M training for maintenance workers involved in general maintenance
and incidental ACM repair tasks. At least 16
Level 3 Abatement worker training for
workers who may conduct asbestos abatement.
This work involves direct, intentional contact
with ACM. “Abatement worker” training
courses that involve 24 to 32 hours of training
fulfill this level of training.
Strong support
by the building
owner can
convince workers
that following
procedures is
critical to
protecting their
own health as
well as the health
of other building
Level 1 Awareness training for workers
involved in activities where ACM may be
accidentally disturbed. May range from 2-8
2 5
What Regulations Affect
Asbestos Management
Programs in Buildings,
Especially O&M Programs?
Federal, State, and Local Regulations Affecting
O&M Programs
Building owners are governed by a variety of federal, state, and local regulations which influence the
way they must deal with ACM in their facilities. Some of these regulations, particularly at the state
and local level, may change frequently Building owners should contact their state and local
government agencies, in addition to organizations such as the National Conference of State
Legislatures (NCSL), the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS), or EPA environmental
assistance centers, for updated information on these requirements. (Appendix D lists phone numbers
for these organizations.)
Building owners
are governed by a
variety of federal,
state, and local
regulations which
influence the way
they must deal
with ACM in
their facilities.
There are several important Occupational
Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
and EPA regulations
that are designed to protect workers. They are summa
rized here, as guidance. OSHA has specific requirements concerning worker protection and procedures
used to control ACM. These include the OSHA
construction industry standard for asbestos (29 CFR
1926.58), which applies to O&M work, and the general
industry asbestos standard (29 CFR 1910.1001). Statedelegated OSHA plans, as well as local jurisdictions,
may impose additional requirements.
OSHA Regulations
and the U.S.
EPA Worker
Protection Rule
For most operations and maintenance activities in
building areas where only non-friable ACM is present or
where friable ACM is in good condition, applicable
OSHA permissible exposure limits are not likely to be
exceeded. However, it is possible that some O&M
activities will disturb ACM to such an extent that the
OSHA limits are exceeded, unless good work practices
are followed.
The OSHA standards generally cover private sector
workers, and public sector employees in states which
have an OSHA state plan. Public sector employees, such
as city or county government employees, or certain
school employees, who are not already subject to a state
OSHA plan are covered by the EPA “Worker Protection
Rule” (Federal Register: February 25, 1987; 40 CFR
763 Subpart G, Asbestos Abatement Projects; Worker
Protection, Final Rule). Note: As this document goes to
press, 0SHA is considering a substantial number of
changes to its regulations.
The OSHA standards and the EPA Worker Protection
Rule require employers to address a number of items
which are triggered by exposure of employees to
asbestos fibers. Exposure is discussed in terms of fibers
per cubic centimeter (cc) of air. A cc is a volume
approximately equivalent to that of a sugar cube.
Two main provisions of the regulations fall into the
general category of “Permissible Exposure Limits
(PELs)” to airborne asbestos fibers. They are:
8-Hour Time-weighted average limit
(TWA)– 0.2 fiber per cubic centimeter (f/cc)
of air based on an 8-hour time-weighted
average (TWA) sampling period. This is the
maximum level of airborne asbestos, on
average, that any employee may be exposed to
over an 8-hour period (normal work shift).
Excursion limit (EL) – 1.0 f/cc as averaged
over a sampling period of 30 minutes.
These levels trigger mandatory requirements, which
include the use of respirators and protective clothing,
the establishment of “regulated areas," the posting of
danger signs as well as the use of engineering controls
and specific work practices.
OSHA regulations also establish an "Action Level": 0.1
f/cc for an 8-hour TWA. Employee training is required
once the action level of 0.1 f/cc and/or the “Excursion
Limit” is reached. This training must include topics
specified by the OSHA rules. If an employee is exposed
at or above the action level for a period of 30 days or
more in a calendar year, medical surveillance is required
according to the OSHA construction industry asbestos
OSHA also requires medical examinations under its
“General Industry Standard” for any employee exposed
to fiber levels in the air at or above the OSHA “action
level” (0.1 f/cc) and/or the “excursion limit” (1. Of/cc). In
both cases – the action level and excursion limit – the
OSHA medical examination requirement applies if the
exposure occurs for at least one day per year.
The OSHA “Construction Industry Standard” (29 CFR
1926.58) for asbestos, is generally applicable for the
workers who carry out the kinds of work discussed in
this O&M guidance document. The OSHA construction industry asbestos standard applies to demolition
and asbestos removal or encapsulation projects, as well
as to repair, maintenance, alteration, or renovation if
ACM is involved. ACM spills or emergency clean-up
actions are also covered by this regulation.
According to those regulations, participation in a
medical surveillance program is required for any
employee who is required to wear a negative pressure,
air-purifying respirator. Preplacement, annual, and
termination physical exams are also required for these
employees. However, a termination exam is only
necessary under the construction industry standard
(which applies to custodial and maintenance employees)
if a physician recommends it. While not mandatory EPA
and NIOSH recommend physical examinations, including cardiac and pulmonary tests, for any employee
required to wear a respirator by the building owner.
These tests determine whether workers will be unduly
stressed or uncomfortable when using a respirator.
Additional requirements of the OSHA asbestos standards, such as the use of air filtration systems and hygiene
facilities, involve procedures which are most applicable
to large-scale asbestos abatement projects. However,
these rules also include a number of recommendations
for procedures which might be appropriate for a variety
of O&M programs for buildings.
“Appendix G" which is specified as a non-mandatory
section to the OSHA regulation 29 CFR 1926.58, may
become mandatory under certain circumstances where
“small-scale, short-duration” asbestos projects are
conducted. These projects are not precisely defined in
terms of either size or duration, although their nature
and scope are illustrated by examples presented in the
text of the regulation. Properly trained maintenance
workers may conduct these projects. Examples may
include removing small sections of pipe insulation or
covering for pipe repair, replacing valves, installing
electrical conduits, or patching or removing small
sections of drywall. OSHA issued a clarification of the
definition of a “small-scale, short-duration” (SS/SD)
project in a September 1987 asbestos directive. The
directive focuses on intent, stating that in SS/SD
projects, the removal of ACM is not the primary goal of
the job. If the purpose of a small-scale, short-duration
project is maintenance, repair, or renovation of the
equipment or surface behind the ACM—not abatement
of ACM—then the appendix provisions may apply If the
intent of the work is abatement of the ACM, then the
full-scale abatement control requirements apply
In any event, this appendix section of the OSHA
construction standard outlines requirements for the use
of certain engineering and work practice controls such
as glovebags, mini-enclosures, and special vacuuming
techniques. Similar information on these procedures
may be found in the EPA’s AHERA regulations for
schools. (See final AHERA rule, Appendix B, for SS/SD
EPA's rules concerning the application,
removal, and disposal
of ACM, as well
as manufacturing,
spraying and fabricating of ACM, were issued under the asbestos
NESHAP. The asbestos NESHAP regulation governs
asbestos demolition and renovation projects in all
facilities. The NESHAP rule usually requires owners or
operators to have all friable ACM removed before a
building is demolished, and may require its removal
before a renovation. For renovation projects where
friable ACM will be disturbed, the NESHAP rule may
require appropriate work practices or procedures for
the control of emissions. It is prudent to note that any
ACM which may become friable poses a potential
hazard that should be addressed. The building owner
should consider that in many instances, the removal of
friable ACM prior to demolition could be less expensive
than removals while the building is still occupied and
being used. Some revisions to the current. NESHAP
rule are anticipated by the end of 1.990.
U.S. EPA National
Emission Standards
for Hazardous Air
Pollutants (NESHAP)
(40 CFR 61 Subpart M)
In general
applicable OSHA
exposure limits
are not likely to
be exceeded for
most O&M
activities in
building areas
where only nonfriable ACM is
present or where
friable ACM is in
good condition.
EPA or the state (if the state has been delegated
authority under NESHAP) must be notified before a
building is demolished or renovated. The following
information is required on the NESHAP notice:
Depending on
project size, EPA
or the state must
be notified before
a building is
demolished or
Name and address of the building owner or
Description and location of the building;
Estimate of the approximate amount of friable
ACM present in the facility;
Scheduled starting and completion dates of
ACM removal;
Nature of planned demolition or renovation
and method(s) to be used;
Procedures to be used to comply with the
requirements of the regulation; and
Name, address, and location of the disposal
site where the friable asbestos waste material
will be deposited.
The notification requirements do not apply if a building
owner plans renovation projects which will disturb less
than the NESHAP limits of 160 square feet of friable
ACM on facility components or 260 linear feet of friable
ACM on pipes (quantities involved over a one-year
period). For renovation operations in which the amount
of ACM equals or exceeds the NESHAP limits, notification is required as soon as possible.
Emissions Control
and Waste Disposal
The NESHAP asbestos rule prohibits visible emissions
to the outside air by requiring emission control procedures and appropriate work practices during collection, packaging, transportation or disposal of friable
ACM waste. All ACM must be kept wet until sealed in a
leak-tight container that includes the appropriate label.
The following table provides a simplified reference for
building owners regarding the key existing NESHAP
Under expanded authority of
RCRA, a few
states have
asbestos-containing waste
as a hazardous
waste, and require stringent handling, manifesting, and
disposal procedures. In those cases, the state hazardous
Resource Conservation
and Recovery Act
Regulations (RCRA);
and Comprehensive
Environmental Response,
Compensation, and
Liability Act Regulations
(CERCLA, or “Superfund”)
2 8
waste agency should be contacted before disposing of
asbestos for approved disposal methods and recordkeeping requirements, and for a list of approved
disposal sites.
Friable asbestos is also included as a hazardous substance under EPA's CERCLA regulations. The owner or
manager of a facility (e.g., building, installation, vessel,
landfill) may have some reporting requirements. Check
with your EPA Regional Office for further information.
(See Appendix D for telephone numbers.)
In October 1987,
EPA issued final regulations to carry out
the Asbestos Hazard
Emergency Response Act of 1986 (AHERA). The AHERA regulatory
requirements deal only with public and private elementary and secondary school buildings. The regulations
require schools to conduct inspections, develop comprehensive asbestos management plans, and select
asbestos response actions to deal with asbestos hazards.
The AHERA rules do not require schools to remove
The Asbestos
Hazard Emergency
Response Act
Regulations (AHERA)
A key element of the AHERA regulations requires
schools to develop an O&M program if friable ACM is
present. The AHERA O&M requirements also cover
non-friable ACM which is about to become friable. For
example, drilling through an ACM wall will likely result
in friable ACM. Under the AHERA O&M provisions,
schools must carry out specific O&M procedures which
provide for the clean-up of any ACM releases and help
ensure the general safety of school maintenance and
custodial workers, as well as all other school building
occupants. The AHERA regulation’s O&M requirements mandate that schools employ specific work
practices including wet wiping, HEPA vacuuming,
proper waste disposal procedures, and specific training
for custodial and maintenance employees who work in
buildings with ACM.
Bans on some uses and
applications of asbestos
under the Clean Air Act
were briefly described
in Chapter 1. In July 1989, under the Toxic Substances
Control Act (TSCA), EPA promulgated an Asbestos Ban
and Phaseout Rule. The complete rule was published in
the Federal Register on July 12,1989.
Asbestos Ban
and Phaseout Rule
Beginning in 1990 and taking effect in three stages, the
rule prohibits the importation, manufacture, and processing of 94 percent of all remaining asbestos products
in the United States over a period of seven years.
Existing NESHAP Requirements Summary*
(in 1 yr.)
<260 ln. ft.
> 260 ln. ft.
or > 160 sq. ft.
or <160 sq. ft.
(Work Practices)
> 260 ln. ft.
<260 ln. ft.
or > 160 sq. ft.
or > 160 sq. ft.
*May be changed on promulgation of Revised NESHAP Rule in 1990
Chapter Summary
A variety of federal, state, and local regulations govern the way building owners must deal with ACM
in their facilities. State and local regulations maybe more stringent than federal standards and often
change rapidly Building owners should periodically check with the appropriate Federal, State, and
local authorities to determine whether any new asbestos regulations have been developed or whether
current regulations have been amended. Specific federal regulations that may affect asbestos-related
tasks and/or workers are highlighted here:
● OSHA Construction Industry Standard for
Asbestos (29 CFR 1926.58).
● OSHA General Industry Standard for Asbestos
(29 CFR 1910.1001).
● OSHA Respiratory Protection Standard
(29 CFR 1910.134).
● EPA Worker Protection Rule (40 CFR 763
Subpart, G).
● EPA National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) (40 CFR 61
Subpart M).
● EPA Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response
Act (AHERA) Regulations (40 CFR 763 Subpart E),
● EPA Asbestos Ban and Phaseout Rule (40 CFR
763 Subpart I).
2 9
Appendix A.
Glossary of Terms
Asbestos-Containing Material. Any material containing more than one percent asbestos.
Asbestos Program Manager
A building owner or designated representative who supervises all aspects of the facility
asbestos management and control program.
Air Plenum
Any space used to convey air in a building or structure. The space above a suspended ceiling
is often used as an air plenum.
Asbestos Abatement
Procedures to control fiber release from asbestos-containing materials in a building or to
remove it entirely These may involve removal, encapsulation, repair, enclosure,
encasement, and operations and maintenance programs.
Separation of one layer from another.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Friable Asbestos
Any materials that contain greater than one percent asbestos, and which can be crumbled,
pulverized, or reduced to powder by hand pressure. This may also include previously nonfriable material which becomes broken or damaged by mechanical force.
A polyethylene or polyvinyl chloride bag-like enclosure affixed around an asbestoscontaining source (most often, TSI) so that the material maybe removed while minimizing
release of airborne fibers to the surrounding atmosphere.
HEPA Filter
High-Efficiency Particulate Air Filter. Such filters are rated to trap at least 99.97% of all
particles 0.3 microns in diameter or larger.
Industrial Hygienist
A professional qualified by education, training, and experience to anticipate, recognize.
evaluate and develop controls for occupational health hazards.
Medical Surveillance
Aperiodic comprehensive review of a worker’s health status. The required elements of an
acceptable medical surveillance program are listed in the Occupational Safety and Health
Administration standards for asbestos.
Miscellaneous ACM
Interior asbestos-containing building material on structural components, structural
members or fixtures, such as floor and ceiling tiles; does not include surfacing material or
thermal system insulation.
National Emission Standard for Hazardous Air Pollutants-EPA Rules under the Clean Air
The National Institute for occupational Safety and Health, which was established by the
Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970. Primary functions of NIOSH are to conduct
research, issue technical information, and test and certify respirators.
Personal Air Samples
An air sample taken with a sampling pump directly attached to the worker with the
collecting filter and cassette placed in the worker’s breathing zone. These samples are
required by the OSHA asbestos standards and the EPA Worker Protection Rule.
Prevalent Level Samples
Air samples taken under normal conditions (also known as ambient background samples).
Surfacing ACM
Asbestos-containing material that is sprayed-on, troweled-on or otherwise applied to
surfaces, such as acoustical plaster on ceilings and fireproofing materials on structural
members, or other materials on surfaces for acoustical, fireproofing, or other purposes.
Thermal system insulation – asbestos-containing material applied to pipes, fittings,
boilers, breeding, tanks, ducts or other interior structural components to prevent heat
loss or gain or water condensation.
Time-weighted Average. In air sampling, this refers to the average air concentration of
contaminants during a particular sampling period.
Appendix B.
Sample Recordkeeping Form:
Form 1. A sample form for recording information during ACM reassessament.
Reinspection of Asbestos-Containing Materials
Location of asbestos-containing material (address, building, room, or general description]
Type of asbestos-containing material(s):
1. Sprayed-or troweled-on ceilings or walls
2. Sprayed-or troweled-on structural members
3. Insulation on pipes, tanks, or boiler
4. Other (describe)
Abatement Status:
1. The material has been encapsulated
, enclosed
, neither
, removed
1. Evidence of physical damage
2. Evidence of water damage:
3. Evidence of delamination or other damage:
4. Degree of accessibility of the material:
5. Degree of activity near the material:
6. Location in an air plenum, air shaft, or airstream:
7. Other observations (including the condition of the encapsulant or enclosure, if any):
*Recommended Action:
Form 2. A sample application form for maintenance work approval.
Job Request Form for Maintenance Work
Telephone No.
Job Request No.
Requested starting date:
Anticipated finish date:
Address, building, and room number(s) (or description of area) where work is to be performed:
Description of work
Description of any asbestos-containing material that might be affected, if known (include location and type):
Name and telephone number of requestor:
Name and telephone number of supervisor
Submit this application to
(The Asbestos Program Manager)
NOTE An application must be submitted for all maintenance work whether or not asbestos-containing material might be
affected. An authorization must then be received before any work can proceed.
Granted (Job Request No.
With conditions*
3 2
Form 3. A sample maintenance work authorization form.
Maintenance Work Authorization Form
Authorization is given to proceed with the following maintenance work:
Asbestos-containing materials are not present in the vicinity of the maintenance work.
ACM is present, but its disturbance is not anticipated however, if conditions change, the Asbestos Program Manager
will re-evaluate the work request prior to proceeding.
ACM is present, and maybe disturbed.
Work Practices if Asbestos-Containing Materials Are Present
The following work practices shall be employed to avoid or minimum disturbing asbestos:*
Personal Protection if Asbestos-Containing Materials Are Present**
The following equipment/clothes shall be used/worn during the work to protect workers:
(manuals on personal protection can be referenced)
Special Practices and/or Equipment Required:
(Asbestos Program Manager)
Form 4. A sample work evaluation form
This evaluation covers the following maintenance work:
Location of work (address, building, room number(s), or general description):
Date(s) of work
Description of work
Work approval form number:
Evaluation of work practices employed to minimize disturbance of asbestos:
Evaluation of work practices employed to contain released fibers and to clean up the work area:
Evaluation of equipment and procedures used to protect workers:
Personal air monitoring results; (i-house worker or contract?)
Worker name
Worker name
Handling or storage of ACM waste:
(Asbestos Program Manager)
Appendix C
Illustrative Organization Chart
Building Owner
Asbestos Program
(Respiratory Rot.
Prog. Administrator)
USEPA Reg. Ash.
State & Local
Gov. Advisor,
Physical Plant
Other Bldg.
Figure 1. A sample organization for a building owner with
a large in-house management staff. Shaded boxes indicate
outside assistance.
Owners and Managers Who Employ an Extensive In-house Management Staff
Asbestos Program Manager: Has authority and overall
OSHA Regional Office: May he helpful in answering
responsibility for the asbestos control program. May develop
the O&M program. Coordinates all activities. May also
administer the respiratory protection program.
questions about existing regulations, and providing guidance
for worker protection.
Asbestos Consultant(s)*: (Industrial Hygienists, Health
Physical Plant Manager: (may also be the Asbestos
Program Manager) Participates in establishing work practices
for cleaning and maintenance activities, and in training
custodial and maintenance staff to use them. Assists in
implementing the O&M program and in conducting periodic
reinspection of the ACM. Ensures that outside contractors
follow O&M procedures.
Communications Person: (Public Affairs Officer, Nurse,
Physician, Industrial Hygienist) Assists in preparation and
distribution of information about ACM in the building. Person
should be a good speaker and communicator.
Professionals, Architects, Engineers, and others) May assist in
various aspects of the asbestos O&M program, including its
development and implementation. May also conduct material
inspections and provide work practice recommendations.
Lawyer: Provides advice on legal requirements (such as laws
and statutes) and liability aspects of the program.
Asbestos Contractor*: May provide services for ACM
abatement and for building decontamination following a fiber
release episode.
Recordkeeping Person: (Executive Assistant, Secretary)
Responsible for maintaining records.
*It is important for owners and Asbestos Program Manager’s to
consider potential “conflict of interest” issues pertaining to those
persons or firms used to sample, inspect, assess, analyze, recommend response actions, design response actions, and conduct
asbestos response actions.
EPA Regional Asbestos Coordinator, NESHAP Coordinator and State/Local Government Advisors: Pro-
vide getter-id guidance and answer specific questions.
Building Owner
Asbestos Program
(elect., phone,
plumbing, etc.)
USEPA Reg. Ash.
State & Local
Figure 2. A sample organization for owners of buildings
where services are provided by contract. Shaded boxes
indicate outside assistance.
Owners and Managers Who Contract For Services
Asbestos Program Manager: Has overall responsibility
for the asbestos control program. May develop and implement
the O&M program. Establishes training and experience requirements for contractor’s workers. Supervises and enforces
work practices with assistance of work crew supervisors.
Conducts periodic reinspection and responsible for recordkeeping. This person should be properly trained in O&M
program development and implementation (see Chapter 5).
EPA Regional Asbestos Coordinator and State/Local
Government Advisors: Provide general guidance and
answer specific questions,
OSHA Regional Office: May be helpful in answering
questions about existing regulations and providing guidance
for worker protection.
Asbestos Consultant(s)*: (Industrial Hygienists, Health
Professionals, Architects, Engineers, and others) May assist
Asbestos Program Manager in various aspects of the asbestos
O&M program, including development and implementation.
May also conduct the inspection and provide work practices
Lawyer: Provides advice on legal requirements (laws and
statutes) and liability aspects of the program.
Asbestos Contractor*: May provide services for ACM
abatement and building decontamination following a fiber
release episode.
*It is important for owners and Asbestos Program Manager’s to
consider potential “conflict of interest” issues pertaining to those
persons or firms used to sample, inspect, assess, analyze, recommend response actions, design response actions, and conduct
asbestos response actions.
Additional Assistance and Training
Region Vll – Kansas City, MO (816) 374-5861
Region Vlll – Denver, CO: (303) 844-3061
Region IX – San Francisco, CA: (415) 995-5672
Region X – Seattle, WA (206) 442-5930
Additional assistance can be obtained from your U.S.
EPA Regional Asbestos Coordinators, NESHAP Regional Coordinators, and OSHA Regional Offices. Their
telephone numbers are listed below
EPA Region 1: (CT,ME,MA,NH,RI,VT)
Asbestos Coordinator (617) 565-3835
NESHAP Coordinator (617) 565-3265
Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA)
Assistance Hotline
Copies of the EPA Guidance Documents, Technical Bulletins,
and other publications cited here can be obtained by calling the
TSCA Assistance Hotline, in Washington, D.C., at: (202)
Approved Training Centers
EPA Region II: (NJ,NY,PR,VI)
Asbestos Coordinator (201) 321-6671
NESHAP Coordinator (212) 264-6770
Asbestos Coordinator (215) 597-3160
NESHAP Coordinator (215) 597-6550
Asbestos Coordinator (404) 347-5014
NESHAP Coordinator (404) 347-2904
Asbestos Coordinator (312) 886-6003
NESHAP Coordinator (312) 353-2088
Asbestos Coordinator (214) 655-7244
NESHAP Coordinator (214) 655-7229
Asbestos Coordinator (913) 551-7020
NESHAP Coordinator (913) 551-7020
Asbestos Coordinator (303) 293-1442
NESHAP Coordinator (303) 294-7685
Asbestos Coordinator (415) 556-5406
NESHAP Coordinator (415) 556-5526
EPA Region X: (AK,ID,OR,WA)
Asbestos Coordinator (206) 442-4762
NESHAP Coordinator (206) 442-1757
Region I – Boston, MA:(617) 223-6710
Region II – New York, NY: (212) 944-3432
Region III – Philadelphia, PA (215) 596-1201
Region IV – Atlanta, GA (404) 347-3573
Region V – Chicago, IL: (312) 353-2220
Region VI – Dallas, TX: (214) 7674731
Certain training centers and satellite centers were initially
funded by EPA to develop asbestos training courses. They and
other training providers approved by EPA or states, offer
courses for professionals such as asbestos inspectors and
management planners involved with ACM detection and
control, for asbestos abatement project designers, project
supervisors and abatement workers, and others. In general,
qualified professionals trained as inspectors and asbestos
management planners would be good choices to design an
O&M plan. Original training centers are located at the
following sites:
Georgia Institute of Technology
29 O’Keefe Building
Atlanta, GA 30332
(404) 894-3806
University of Kansas
Asbestos Training Center
6600 College Blvd. Suite 315
Overland Park, KS 66211
(913) 491-0181
Tufts University
Curtis Hall
Asbestos Information Center
474 Boston Avenue
Medford, MA 02155
(617) 381-3531
University of Illinois at Chicago
Midwest Asbestos Information Center
BOX 6998
Chicago, IL 60680
(312) 996-6904
Pacific Asbestos
Information Center
University CA/Extension
2223 Fulton St.
Berkeley, CA 94720
(415) 643-7143
Additional training providers are listed in the Federal Register
on a regular basis. Call (202) 554-1404 for information. In
addition, information on how to receive a copy of an O&M
Course produced by an EPA contractor maybe obtained at the
same number.
National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL)
Denver, CO – (303) 623-7800
National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS),
Washington, D.C. – (202) 289-7800
American Board of Industrial Hygiene (ABIH),
Lansing, MI – (517) 321-2638
National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST),
Gaithersburg, MD – (contact for lab accreditation) –
(301) 975-4016
Respiratory Protection
EPA recommends that the following guidelines be followed for
respiratory protection during various custodial and maintenance tasks. These guidelines are issued to cover tasks that do
not always create routine fiber levels high enough to trigger
OSHA respiratory protection requirements. Therefore, building owners should note they go beyond OSHA requirements.
● Routine maintenance where contact with
ACM is unlikely. No respiratory protection re-
quired. (Air-purifying respirator with high-efficiency
filters should be available if needed: half-face or full
● Routine maintenance where there is reasonable likelihood of ACM disturbance. Air-purifying respirator with high-efficiency filters (half-face or
full facepiece).
● Maintenance or repair involving intentional
small-scale disturbance of ACM. Powered airpurifying respirator with high-efficiency filters, or airpurifying respirator with high-efficiency filters (halfface or full facepiece). If glove bags are used to contain
the ACM during disturbance, either half-face or full
facepiece air-purifying respirators with high-efficiency filters may be used.
● Any O&M activity requiring sawing, cutting,
drilling, abrading, grinding, or sanding ACM.
(NOTE: specially equipped tools with local exhaust
ventilation should be used for these activities. See 29
CFR 1910.) Powered air-purifying respirator with
high-efficiency filters, or full facepiece, air-purifying
respirator equipped with high-efficiency filters should
be used.
● Cleanup after a minor asbestos fiber release.
Air-purifying respirator with high-efficiency filters
(half-face or full facepiece).
● Cleanup after a major asbestos fiber release.
Air-supplied respirators, either the “Type C" airline
respirator equipped with a backup high-efficiency
filter or SCBA (Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus).
The U.S. EPA, in collaboration with NIOSH, has issued a
guidance document, “A Guide to Respiratory Protection for
the Asbestos Abatement Industry” which recommends levels
of respiratory protection for those engaged in large-scale
asbestos abatement projects that are beyond routine O&M
procedures. Air-supplied self-contained, and “type C“ airline
respirators are the focus of the EPA/NIOSH document. These
respirators allow workers to breathe fresh air supplied through
hoses and face masks, and are generally used only by asbestos
abatement workers engaged in large-scale asbestos removal
projects. They are usually not considered either practical or
necessary for most custodial and maintenance jobs.
3 8
An industrial hygienist or environmental/occupational health
professional should assist workers with respirator selection
and fitting, and train them in respirator use. Fit-testing (which
means determining whether a particular brand and size of
respirator properly fits an individual worker) is essential, since
respirators which leak at the face seal provide significantly less
protection. OSHA requires fit-testing initially and every six
months for employees required to wear a negative pressure
respirator for protection against asbestos, or for individuals
exposed at or above the OSHA-specified limits.
A respirator’s effectiveness is also influenced by how it is
handled, cleaned, and stored. Custodial and maintenance staff
should clean their respirators after each use, and disinfect their
respirators at the end of a day’s use. This improves comfort,
and also reduces the chances of skin irritation or infection.
After cleaning the respirator, custodial and maintenance staff
should place the respirator (with the worker’s name) in a clean
and sanitary location and store the unit in a secure place for
future use. Respirators should be visually inspected by the user
before and after each use, during cleaning and at least monthly
when not in use. Inspection records should be maintained
accordingly When the respirator’s high-efficiency filters are
discarded, they should be disposed of as asbestos waste.
Existing EPA Guidance for Each Step That a Building Owner May Take
to Conrol ACM
Existing EPA Guidance/Regulations*
Appoint Asbestos Program
Manager and Develop an
Organizational Policy.
“Guidance for Controlling Asbestos-Containing Materials in Buildings” (“Purple Book”)
EPA publication number: 560/5-85-024
Inspect the facility to determine
if ACM is present. Take bulk
samples of suspect ACM and
assess the material’s condition.
“Guidance for Controlling Asbestos-Containing Materials in Buildings” (“Purple Book”,
chapter 2) EPA publication number 560/5-85-024
“Simplified Sampling Scheme for Surfacing Materials” (“Pink Book”) EPA publication
number: 560/5-85-030a
“Asbestos-Containing Materials in Schools; Final Rule and Notice” (Asbestos Hazard
Emergency Response Act, or AHERA). Federal Register– October 30, 1987. (sections
763.85 to 763.88)
Model training course materials for accrediting asbestos building inspectors in accordance
with AHERA (inspection/assessment materials).
Establish an O&M program.
“Purple Book, Chapter 3
AHERA regulations, sections 763.91 and 763.92
EPA Guidance for Service and Maintenance Personnel. EPA publication number
Implement and Conscientiously
Manage the O&M Program;
Assess the Potential for
Exposure to Asbestos and Select
Response Actions.
“Purple Book”, Chapter 4
Model training course materials for accrediting asbestos management planners in
accordance with AHERA (assessment materials).
AHERA regulations, section 763.88 and 793.92
Select and Implement
Abatement Actions Other Than
O&M When Necessary
“Purple Book”, Chapter 6
AHERA regulations, section 763.93 (including 763.85 through 763.92)
AHERA regulation, appendix A Determining Completion of Response Actions-Methods.
“Abatement of Asbestos-Containing Pipe Insulation” U.S. EPA Asbestos-ii-Buildings
Technical Bulletin 1986-2.
U.S. EPA National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP)
Regulations (40 CFR 61)
Model training course materials for accrediting asbestos management planners in
accordance with AHERA (assessment materials).
*Most of these guidance materials are available through EPA’s TSCA Assistance Hotline, at (202) 554-1404.
Cement Pipes
Cement Wallboard
Cement Siding
Asphalt Floor Tile
Vinyl Floor Tile
Vinyl Sheet Flooring
Flooring Backing
Construction Mastics (floor tile, carpet, ceiling tile, etc.)
Acoustical Plaster
Decorative Plaster
Textured Paints/Coatings
Ceiling Tiles and Lay-in Panels
Spray-Applied Insulation
Blown-in Insulation
Fireproofing Materials
Taping Compounds (thermal)
Packing Materials (for wall/floor penetrations)
High Temperature Gaskets
Laboratory Hoods/Table Tops
Laboratory Gloves
Fire Blankets
Fire Curtains
Elevator Equipment Panels
Elevator Brake Shoes
HVAC Duct Insulation
Boiler Insulation
Breeching Insulation
Ductwork Flexible Fabric Connections
Cooling Towers
Pipe Insulation (corrugated air-cell, block, etc.)
Heating and Electrical Ducts
Electrical Panel Partitions
Electrical Cloth
Electric Wiring Insulation
Roofing Shingles
Roofing Felt
Base Flashing
Thermal Paper Products
Fire Doors
Joint Compounds
Vinyl Wall Coverings
Spackling Compounds
NOTE: This list does not include every product/material that may contain asbestos. It is intended as a general guide to show which types of
materials may contain asbestos.
USEPA. 1987. Asbestos Abatement Projects; Worker Protection, Final Rule. 40 CFR 763. February 1987.
USEPA. 1984. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants. 40
CFR 61. April 5, 1984.
USEPA. 1985. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Measuring airborne asbestos following an abatement action.
Washington DC: USEPA. EPA 600/4-85-049. (“Silver Book”)
USEPA. 1985. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Asbestos in buildings: Simplified sampling scheme for surfacing
materials. Washington DC: USEPA. EPA 560/5-85-030A.
(“Pink Book)
USEPA. 1985. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Guidance for controlling asbesdos-containing materials in buildings. Washington DC EPA 560/5-85-024. (“Purple Book”)
USEPA. 1985. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Asbestos in buildings: Guidance for service and maintenance
personnel. Washington DC: EPA 560/5-85-018. (“Custodial
USEPA. 1987. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Asbestos-Containing Materials in Schools; Final Rule and
Notice. 40 CFR 763. Federal Register, October 30, 1987.
USEPA. 1988. EPA Study of Asbestos-Containing Materials
in Public Buildings: A Report to Congress. February 1988.
USEPA. 1989. Asbestos Ban and Phaseout Rule. 40 CFR
763.160 to 763.179. Federal Register July 12, 1989.
USEPA. 1989. Guidelines for Conducting the HERA TEM
Clearance Test to Determine Completion of an Asbestos
Abatement Project. Washington DC: EPA 560/5-89-001.
USEPA. 1989. Transmission Electron Microscopy Asbestos
Laboratories: Quality Assurance Guidelines. Washington DC:
EPA 560/5-90-002.
U.S. Department of Labor: OSHA Regulations. 29 CFR
1910.1001 – General Industry Asbestos Standard and 29 CFR
1926.58 – Construction Industry Asbestos Standard. June
1986; Amended, September, 1988.
USEPA. 1986. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Abatement of asbestos-containing pipe insulation. Washington DC:
Technical Bulletin No. 1986-2.
U.S. Department of Labor: OSHA Regulations. 29 CFR
1910.134 – Respiratory Protection Standard. June, 1974.
USEPA. 1986. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency A
guide to respiratory protection for the asbestos abatement
industry. Washington DC: EPA 560/OPTS-86-00l.
Keyes, Dale L. and Chesson, Jean. 1989. A Guide to
Monitoring Airborne Asbestos in Buildings. Environmental
Sciences, Inc., 105 E. Speedway Blvd., Tucson, Arizona 85705.
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