Is Asbestos Removal Necessary?

asbestos removal in dilapidated buildings

Within the last month, a former waste company announced that it would begin the demolition process of condemned properties that the company bought near its vacant Framingham, MA facility years ago. In the past, General Chemical, which is no longer operating, ran disposal on the southside of Framingham, MA. For years, the site inadvertently dispersed environmental contaminants outside of its boundaries into an adjacent neighborhood, causing the area to be inhabitable. Asbestos removal was also carried out this way.

Neighborhood Inhabitable

Residents were forced to leave their homes behind because of significant environmental pollution, that contaminated the groundwater, soil, and air. Asbestos, PCBs, PCE, TCE, and other hazardous waste contaminants made this Massachusetts neighborhood unlivable. General Chemical, bought these condemned properties from former owners years ago, some for over $500,000 and some for as little as $65,0000. The homes are dilapidated, and one has even caught on fire.

Residents Feel The Properties Should Have Been Torn Down 20 Years Ago

Residents believe the properties should have been torn down years ago. According to residents, these homes have been vacant for almost twenty years. Finally, the four houses that were purchased from former neighborhood residents by General Chemical will be demolished within the next couple of months. Framingham citizens are glad to see this day come and are ready for the ‘eyesores’ to be gone.

General Chemical Will Need to Get Permits

According to authorities, General Chemical must get a permit with the city building department. John MacAuley, asbestos enforcement section chief for the Department of Environmental Protection, of the state of Massachusetts, said General Chemical must also file a demolition notice and a non-traditional work plan guideline with the agency regarding not conducting asbestos removal.

Demolition Can Proceed Without Asbestos Removal

Since the houses are condemned and unsafe to enter, asbestos removal will not be required. Demolition crews will be able to tear down the homes without having to attempt to enter the unsafe structures. General Chemical also has a contractor selected for hazardous waste removal.

Generally, asbestos is required to be removed before a building is demolished, but if the structure is not safe to enter or the asbestos removal the demolition can proceed with approval. Asbestos is a group of mineral fibers that have been used in building products and construction applications for decades. Older homes and buildings built before the 1980s are incredibly likely to have utilized asbestos within the structure, and disposal facilities predating this time were more than likely to have more free-floating particles than today’s sites.

Asbestos Becomes Dangerous When Disturbed

Asbestos becomes dangerous when the material is  disturbed or broken apart. Once disturbed, the asbestos fibers or particles can become airborne and vulnerable to human exposure. When those particulates are inhaled or swallowed, they settle in the lining of the lungs or abdomen. Over time, as those particles settle, they can buildup and possibly enhance lung disease, lung cancer, and cause mesothelioma cancer.

Mesothelioma Caused By Asbestos Exposure

Asbestos exposure is hazardous. The latency period for mesothelioma cancer diagnosis is known to be well over twenty to thirty years. If you or a loved one have ever lived on or near contaminated properties and feel that you may be suffering from the harmful effects of asbestos exposure, please do not hesitate to call an experienced mesothelioma or asbestos attorney.

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