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My discovery came to me by accidentally removing an asbestos material in my home. The resulting condition of the whole house after this accident left me with a sore chest, dry and unbearably itching skin and eyes. My wife complained of extreme thirst and my oldest son, age 14, developed severe asthma. This all continued for five to six months. During this time I tried desparately to determine if we were living in an unsafe level of asbestos. The material that I had removed was tested and found to contain 20% crysitile asbestos. Air sampling proved to be unreliable because the area had been ventilated so well. But the furnishings, carpets, walls and all other personal belongings were covered the remnants of the demolition.Everyone wanted to play down the seriousness of the situation, but, to me it was obviously not a healthy environment.
So, I set out to try to logically deduce, with a knowledge of the physical properties of asbestos,when I encountered the substance as I attempted to clean every surface and item in every room of the house.
That was fifteen years ago. During that time, as I learned more about where we all encounter asbestos materials on a daily basis. I made mental notes concerning my and others' reactions to these encounters. Many situations have arisen ranging from sore throats and skin conditions(acne and basil cell skin cancer) to asthma, pneumonia and death. I don't have clinical proof of these claims I've made, except to say "if it looks, walks and sounds like a duck it probably is a duck". Many times clinical trials are verified by producing the same results in subsequent testing. Deductive reasoning can also be verified in the same way. If the same results are observed again and again after low level exposure to these remnants then that is proof to me.
Without writing a book, I wouldn't have the space to detail every observation I've made during this period, but I can assure you that no contact with asbestos is without a possible adverse health consequence.
Asbestos is a very lightweight chrystal-like material with highly static electrical properties. It often produces a static discharge like when one is shocked by touching the metal switch plate or door knob in their home. It often leaves a bitter-salty taste in your mouth. It can stay airborne for days at a time. It absorbs moisture and produces a very dry environment (which only makes the static electric situation worse.)
The loose material may be accidentally contacted in a number of building types and situations.
Many buildings built before 1977 have vinyl asbestos floor tile. No one can avoid walking on this, if they enter the building. This is fine if the floor is well maintained. Look out for broken or worn and never waxed tile. This applies to any location in the building, commercial or residential. Closets are very seldom waxed. Items stored there will accumulate certain amounts of this substance.
Anytime an older building is renovated the possibility exists for a number of materials containing asbestos to be encountered. The contractor does't always do the right thing. In many instances it is cheaper to pay the fine if he is caught. So he just tears it out and throws it in the dumpster or hauls it to the dump himself. As a consequence, many newly renovated stores have a certain amount of this dust on the shelves and new merchandise in the store.
There are many more instances of contact for which I don't have the time to detail here, but basically, with the characteristics of the material, knowledge of where you may encounter the substance and many hours of observation (I've been in construction over thirty years), you too can make the same deductive conclutions that I have made.
In subsequent articles I intend to go into detail on the unique physical properties of asbestos and how this promotes detection in your hair and clothes. In future articles I would also like to expand on the many other health effects I've noticed, such as acne, which could benifit many young adults and a number of people who continue with this complexion problem into adulthood.
For more information on this subject see these sites:
Rick Raymond has been a construction electrician for thirty five years. He has been married for thirty three years with three children. Science and trouble shooting have always been a welcome challenge to him.
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