What is Asbestos?

Asbestos is the name of group highly fibrous minerals with separable, long and thin fibers. Separated Asbestos fibers are strong enough and flexible enough to be spun and woven. Asbestos fibers are heat resistant, making them useful for many industrial purposes. Because of their durability, Asbestos fibers that get into lung tissue will remain for long periods of time.

Asbestos has a long history. It was first used in Finland about 2500 BC to strengthen clay pots. In classical times, the indestructible shrouds in which the ashes of the eminent were preserved were woven from Asbestos. The word “Asbestos” comes from the Greek meaning “Inextinguishable” or “Indestructible”. Its use for lamp-wicks has continued through the ages up to the present day.
Asbestos exposure can occur in the workplace, particularly if you work or have worked as:-
  • Pipe or Steam Fitter
  • Plumber
  • Brake Repair Mechanic
  • Insulation Installer
  • Dry Wall Finisher
  • Carpenter
  • Roofer
  • Electrician
  • Welder
  • Miner
  • Shipyard Worker/ Ship building Workers/Ship recycling workers
  • Building Demolition Workers
  • Vermiculite/ Industrial Talc Workers
Asbestos in Ship recycling industry
  • Asbestos is mainly used in engine room as insulation on pipelines. The quantity of asbestos content in majority of vessels is very negligible, ranging between 0.05 to 0.10 % of the total LDT of the vessel.
  • Handling and storage of asbestos is carried out as per NIOH guidelines. 
    1. Wet stripping of pipes in separate asbestos handling area is strictly followed in all the plots, as wet processors do not generate fibre in the work environment.
    2. All plots of the industry have workers trained specially for removal of asbestos who remove asbestos and solidify it by using cement poles for subsequent land filling. These cement poles are then sent to the TSDF site for land filling.
    3. Such trained workers are medically examined on regular basis.