Perhaps you're one of many Pennsylvania homeowners who enjoys restoration and renovation projects. Whether you have taken on such projects several times in the past or have recently purchased a home for the first time and it needs some repairs, it can be fun and rewarding to roll your sleeves up and create a new look in an old home.
If your home was built before the 1980s, there is a good chance it contains asbestos. That doesn't necessarily mean you can't do any home repairs or updates; however, you'll want to make sure you learn as much as you can about the risks involved before moving forward with a plan. The thing about asbestos is that there is no safe amount of exposure. Many asbestos situations lead to serious health problems, as well as litigation when someone's negligence is deemed responsible for an injury.
Improve your safety
Risk for harm is lower if you leave asbestos-laden materials alone or at least allow certified professionals to deal with it. The following list includes things to keep in mind regarding asbestos:
- You definitely don't want to directly touch materials containing asbestos.
- If, for instance, you have ceiling tiles or flooring that you suspect contain asbestos, you should not do any hammering, scraping, peeling or otherwise handle it in any way.
- If the materials you believe contain asbestos are already peeling, crumbling or are soggy wet, you should stay as far away as possible.
- If you plan on remodeling or your home needs repairs, it is always a good idea to request an inspection from a certified asbestos investigator before starting the project.
It is best to lay floor over floor if you suspect your current flooring contains asbestos rather than pulling up the existing one, which can release dangerous microscopic fibers into the air that you or your family might ingest or inhale. This is how most asbestos-related illnesses begin. Those fibers can lodge in your lungs, which can eventually lead to mesothelioma, asbestosis or other incurable illnesses.
Support beyond a diagnosis
Living with a chronic or terminal illness prompts many changes in life. The longer your illness lasts, the more support you will likely need, perhaps at some point, even to carry out basic daily living tasks. You may need in-home care or you may need something more. If there are legal issues associated with your situation, you can reach out for support from someone well versed in asbestos litigation laws.