Do you have a building that you're planning on tearing down? Perhaps an old house on a property you just acquired? Or maybe an old business facility? You may think that demolition is as simple as tearing the building down. In some cases, that's true. However, in many cases, especially if the building is older, the building needs to be prepped for demolition. That preparation includes making sure that the demolition won't damage neighboring buildings. It also includes ensuring that the building doesn't contain dangerous chemicals and other pollutants that will be released into the environment. If the building does have those elements, environmental remediation may be necessary to make the building safe for demolition. Here are three elements that commonly require remediation:
Asbestos. There was a time when asbestos was frequently used in new construction because it's a fire retardant. It's commonly found in insulation and around walls and roofs. Asbestos was banned when it was found to have a link with serious respiratory diseases like lung cancer. The presence of asbestos isn't necessarily dangerous. However, if the asbestos fibers are broken, the dangerous parts of the material will be released into the air, exposing those nearby to dangerous pollutants.
Obviously, demolition is something that could disrupt asbestos fibers. Before you demolish the building, you'll likely need an environmental remediation firm to safely clean and clear the asbestos.
PCBs. Polychlorinated biphenyl, also known as PCB, is a dangerous material that has frequently been used in electrical equipment and heavy machinery. Not all PCBs are dangerous, but many are. They can cause cancer, kill wildlife, and do extensive environmental damage. Removing PCBs is usually a multi-step process. You'll need someone to clear the facility, treat the surrounding landscape, and even set up safety procedures in case a demolition worker accidentally comes in contact with PCB liquids. Depending on the amount of PCBs in your facility, your demolition workers may need to wear protective clothing and even take decontamination showers.
Lead paint. This is another element that used to be a common part of new construction. Lead paint was banned after it was determined that the lead was toxic. Many buildings, though, still have lead paint. The lead has to be disposed of properly. Otherwise, the lead could get into the soil and contaminate nearby water and wildlife, causing illness and even death. An environmental remediation firm can safely strip the paint and dispose of it, making your building ready for demolition.
If the building is older, it's probably wise to have a remediation firm do an inspection. They can determine whether contaminants are present and recommend remediation solutions.
For more information, contact A. G. Wassenaar, Inc. or a similar company.