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700,000+ Homes in British Colombia Likely Have Asbestos Reports WorkSafeBC

Vancouver, British Columbia, December 15, 2022

WorkSafeBC, the provincial agency with a mission to promote safe and healthy workplaces across British Colombia, recently announced that over 700,000 homes in the region were built before 1990 and likely have asbestos-containing materials in them. The announcement was part of the agency’s effort to remind homeowners having renovation or demolition work done to their home that they share responsibility in protecting workers from asbestos exposures.

“Homeowners must get their homes tested for asbestos before renovation or demolition work begins,” stated Suzana Prpic, Senior Prevention Manager at WorkSafeBC in an October news release. The same announcement reminded residents that asbestos-containing materials can be found in over 3,000 building materials that were once in use prior to the 1990s in Canada. “Anytime materials that contain asbestos are disturbed there is the risk of asbestos fibers being released into the air,” said Joe Frasca, Senior Vice President of Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “Inhalation exposure to asbestos fibers over time is known to cause mesothelioma, asbestosis and lung cancer, and these conditions may not appear for many years after exposure. The only way to know for sure if a building material contains asbestos is to have it tested.” EMSL Analytical, with an asbestos testing laboratory in B.C. and many others across Canada and the United States, provides asbestos testing services, sampling supplies, easy-to-use test kits, air monitoring instruments and personal protective equipment (PPE). These services and products protect workers and the public, and can help to keep companies in compliance with health and safety regulations.

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