Packaging Asbestos

Once asbestos-containing materials have been removed from a home or other building, they must be properly disposed of.  Since the material will almost certainly need to be transported to another facility for disposal, it needs to be carefully packaged so that asbestos fibers cannot escape into the air during transport.  The packaging must also be clearly labeled so there can be no confusion as to the contents of the bag.

State Requirements

The Code of Federal Regulations section pertaining to asbestos does not identify specifics on packaging asbestos-containing materials, only that they must be securely packaged and clearly labeled.  States have their own regulations in this regard, and many of these regulations are similar.  Minnesota and Delaware, for example, both require that asbestos-containing materials first be wetted and then packed in at least two layers of 6-mm sheeting or plastic bags.  Delaware’s regulations also specify that the bags must be sealed with duct tape or an equivalent waterproof tape. The double-bagging prevents the accidental release of asbestos fibers into the air, since even a small tear in one bag is a potential health threat.  Special containers called “bladder bags” are made for the purpose of disposing of hazardous waste.  They are disposable, yet made with high-strength materials that can stand up to wet waste streams for asbestos containment.

Labeling

Once packaged, asbestos-containing materials must be plainly labeled as such.  Many state regulations require the labels to contain the phrases “Danger: Contains Asbestos Fibers,” “Avoid Creating Dust,” and “Cancer and Lung Disease Hazard.”  The label must also contain the name and address of the site where the waste came from.  Handlers will then need to follow the regulation for transportation and disposal of this toxic substance. References: City of Columbia, Missouri Delaware Solid Waste Authority Poly-Corr Industries