An Asbestos Glossary - Definitions and Acronyms Used in Asbestos Management.

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  Adequately Wet
When using the wet method of ACM removal, to wet the material sufficiently to prevent the release of particulates.
  Air Monitoring
The sampling of airborne asbestos fibres. A method of checking the effectiveness of asbestos control measures. There are three categories. 1.) Exposure monitoring, 2.) Control monitoring, 3.) Clearance monitoring.
  Air-line respirator
A respirator which is fed breathable air from a compressor at greater than normal atmospheric pressure vis an air line.
  Amphibole Asbestos
It has two sub-types of commercial significance. - Crocidolite, is blue in colour and is often referred to as Blue asbestos. - The most hazardous of the amphibole asbestos family - Amosite, gray to gray-green in the rock, cloudy gray when processed. Sometimes brown and hence called Brown Asbestos. - Second only to Crocidolite in toxicity.
The fibrous form of mineral silicates belonging to the serpentine and amphibole groups of rock-forming minerals. Comprising:- Actinolite, Amosite (brown asbestos), Anthophyllite, Chrysotile(white asbestos), Crocidolite (blue asbestos), Tremolite, or any mixture containing one or more of the mineral silicates belonging to the Serpentine and Amphibole groups.
  Asbestos Abatement
Another term for the removal of asbestos containing materials from structures.
AC  Asbestos Cement
Cement and sand products reinforced with asbestos fibres.
ACM  Asbestos Containing Material
Any material, object, product or debris that contains asbestos.
  Asbestos Removal Control Plan
A documented list of the measures to be taken to control the risks to workers and others while asbestos removal work is being undertaken. It is specific to each individual work site.
  Asbestos Removal Site
The asbestos work area and the surrounding adjacent area. The area around the work area that could possibly have a risk of asbestos exposure.
  Asbestos Removalist
A person who performs asbestos removal work. Small amounts of bonded asbestos (in certain jurisdictions) may be removed by any person deemed competent. Larger amounts of bonded ACM and friable asbestos require that the person to be licensed as being competent to remove asbestos.
  Asbestos Vacuum Cleaner
A vacuum cleaner that is used specifically and only for asbestos removal work. Fitted with a HEPA Filter
  Asbestos Waste
All ACM and all items and materials that have come into contact with ACM during asbestos removal works. It includes but is not restricted to:- 1.) Worker's disposable respirators and coveralls. 2.) Plastic drop sheeting, screening and masking materials. 3.) Disposable rags and wipes. 4.) Disposable primary waste containers, plastic bags. 5.) Any removed timber or other material that the ACM was fixed to and has the potential to hold asbestos fibres.
  Asbestos Work Area
The immediate area of removal work; with restricted access, well defined boundaries with barriers and clear signage. Determined by a risk assessment by a competent person.
An asbestos related disease, a build up of scar tissue in the lungs.
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  Breathing Zone
The immediate space in front of a person's face from which air is inhaled. A 300 mm hemisphere extending forwards fro an imaginary line passing through a person's ears
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C  Ceiling Limit
USA, OSHA terminology. An airborne concentration of a toxic substance in the work environment, which should never be exceeded.
  Chrysotile Asbestos
This is the type of asbestos used in Fibrous Asbestos Cement materials. - Occurs in the base rock serpentine. - It is green in its natural state. - When it is processed, (it’s fibres separated), it becomes gray in colour.
  Clearance Inspection
A visual inspection by a competent person when asbestos work has been completed to verify that the area is safe to be returned to normal use. This has to be done when the work area is dry, and it may also include clearance monitoring and dust sampling.
  Clearance Monitoring
Monitoring of a work area after the work is completed to measure the levels of airborne asbestos fibres, using static or positional monitors set up at average head height. In the Australian Code an area is deemed to be "cleared" if the airborne fibres are found to be less than 0.01 fibres per ml.
A "person in control" of a property who commissions Asbestos Removal Work.
  Competent Person
A person who is deemed capable of supervising the safe performance of the specified work. The person's qualifications may be gained by training, knowledge and past experience. In most jurisdictions the person holds the relevent licenses.
  Control Level
The airborne concentration of asbestos fibres which, if exceeded, indicates a need to implement a control, action or other requirement. The first Control Level for Asbestos is set at 0.01 fibres/mL of air.
  Control Monitoring
Air monitoring measures the level of airborne asbestos fibres in an area during work on ACM. It is used to check that any control procedures in place are working correctly.
CA Regs  Control of Asbestos Regulations
UK term.Control of Asbestos Regulations 2006. The latest consolidation of Asbestos Regulations.
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  Dust and Debris
Small pieces, scraps,dust etc. of ACM that are visible to the naked eye and are heavy enough to settle on surfaces.
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  Exposure Monitoring
Monitoring of a person's exposure to asbestos fibres by various methods to make sure that the levels comply with NES. Samples are taken inside a person's breathing zone, often by fitting a filter holder on a worker's jacket lapel.
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f/cc   Fibers per cubic centimeter
Units of measurement for asbestos in air.
FAC  Fibro
An Australian term which is shortened form of Fibrous Asbestos Cement. Now replaced by AC Used in some trade names, eg. Fibrolite.
  Fibro Cutter
A hand held shear tool used for cutting Fibro, or Fibrous Asbestos Cement.
FAC  Fibrous Asbestos Cement
An Australian term for cement and sand products reinforced with asbestos fibres. Now replaced by AC
  Friable Asbestos
ACM that contains more than 1% of asbestos, which in a dry state can be a powder, or it may become crumbled and powdered by hand pressure.
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Anything at all that can cause sickness, injury or death.
HSE  Health and Safety Executive
UK term.The UK government agency responsible for the regulation of almost all the risks to health and safety arising from work activity in Britain.
  Health Surveillance
Regular health checks to monitor changes in a worker's health as a result of exposure to asbestos.
Another name for Amphibole Asbestos
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  Inaccessible Areas
Areas which are hard to get at such as wall cavities and the interiors of plant and equipment.
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  Latency Period
The period from initial exposure to a substance to the onset of the disease.
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MFM  Membrane Filter Method
A method for estimating airborne asbestos fibres
An asbestos related disease, a cancer of the lungs.
  Method Statement
UK Government. In the Control of Asbestos Regulations. A statement of the proposed methods and control measures for particular work with ACM. Similar to Australian Control plan.
μm, um  Micron, or Micrometer
A unit of length equal to one millionth of a meter, approximately 1/25,000 of an inch.
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NESHAP  National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollution
US government standards from the us EPA dealing in part with asbestos issues.
NES  National Exposure Standard
An Australian exposure standard governing the concentration of airborne asbestos fibres that details safe (in the light of current knowledge) worker exposure levels.
NIOSH  National Institute for Occupational Safety and Hea
US federal agency responsible for conducting research and making recommendations for the prevention of work-related injury and illness. Part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the Department of Health and Human Services.
NOA  Naturally Occurring Asbestos
Almost aways in previously mined areas so the danger would be known to local in the area. It has been said "There is no health threat if NOA remains undisturbed and does not become airborne". US EPA web site.
  Notification Period
The time period between lodging the relevant forms and control plan etc. and receiving authority to commence work with ACM .
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OSHA  Occupational Safety and Health Administration
U.S. Department of Labor.
OSHA   Occupational Safety and Health Administration
US The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, since its inception in 1971, aims to ensure employee safety and health in the United States by working with employers and employees to create better working environments.
Mil, mil  One Thousandth Of An Inch
Used in North America for measuring wire thickness and the thickness of polyethelene vapour barrier. A unit of length equal to 0.0254 millimeter.
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PEL  Permissible exposure limit
USA, An exposure limit that is published and enforced by OSHA as a legal standard.
  Person with Control
In relation to buildings or premises, a person who has control of premises used as a workplace. The person with control may be: (a) the owner of the premises; (b) a person who has, under any contract or lease, an obligation to maintain or repair the premises; (c) a person who is occupying the premises; (d) a person who is able to make decisions about work undertaken at the premises; or (e) an employer at the premises.
PPE  Personal Protective Equipment
Equipment and clothing that is used or worn by a worker to protect themselves against workplace risks or hazards. It includes, facemasks, respirators, coveralls, goggles, helmets, gloves, ear protection and footwear
  Plan of Works
UK Government. In the Control of Asbestos Regulations. The plan by which the Licensed Removal contractor will set out the transit routes, location of skip, enclosure,etc. in onjuction with the Method of Work it is similar to Australian Control plan.
PLM  Polarised Light Microscopy
A method of asbestos fibre analysis.
PACM  Presumed Asbestos Containing Material
Any material, object, product or debris that is presumed to contain asbestos. PACM are treated exactly as if they had been tested and found to contain asbestos.
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RACM  Regulated Asbestos Containing Material
A term used by the US EPA for different categories of ACM. Includes both friable and non-friable ACM
  Respirable Asbestos Fibre
Asbestos fibres able to reach the gas exchange regions of the lungs. In Australian codes they are defined as fibres that are less than 3 μm wide, more than 5 μm in length and have a length to width ratio of more than 3 to 1.
The likelihood of a hazard causing harm to a person. In terms of asbestos risk it relates to illness or disease arising from exposure to Airborne Asbestos Fibres.
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SEM  Scanning Electron Microscope
A method of asbestos fibre analysis.
  Settled Dust Sampling
This is done after ACM are damaged or disturbed in any way. The sampling and analysis are an indication of cleanliness but not necessarily an indication of health risks.
  Shadow Vacuuming
1.)The technique of fixing an asbestos vacuum cleaner inlet close the the cutting edge of a tool to collect dust. 2.) The technique of a second worker holding an asbestos vacuum cleaner inlet close the the cutting edge of a tool to collect dust.
Any man made construction, being either temporary or permanent. Includes buildings or building parts etc.
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CAR2006  The Control of Asbestos Regulations
UK Government. Control of Asbestos Regulations enacted in 2006
TEM  Transmission Electron Microscopy
A method of asbestos fibre analysis.
TEM   Transmission electron microscopy
A microscope technology and an analytical method to identify and count the number of asbestos fibers present in a sample. Capable of achieving a magnification of 20,000x.
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UKAS  United Kingdom Accreditation Service
The UK government body responsible for assessing and certifying asbestos removalists.
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A chemically inert, lightweight, fire resistant, and odorless magnesium silicate material that is generally used for its thermal and sound insulation in construction and for its absorbent properties in horticultural applications. A major source of vermiculite is the mine in Libby, Montana, which has been demonstrated to contain various amounts of amphibole minerals.
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Any activity, physical or mental, carried out in the course of a business, occupation or a profession.
A person who performs work. In terms of work health regulations this covers a broad range of people who do work under a person in control, whether paid or not. They can be contractors and their employees, apprentices,work experience students and volunteers.
Any place where people work.

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