A Summary of Existing AHERA, Asbestos NESHAP and OSHA Regulations, Policies and Guidance By Cornerstone Training Institute

   
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Resilient Floor Coverings and its Adhesive

A Summary of Existing AHERA, Asbestos NESHAP and OSHA Regulations, Policies and Guidance
By Cornerstone Training Institute
 

Removal

Category

Doc. Ref. #/Title

Date

Author

Summary

Removal

Regulation

#1/Occupational Exposure to Asbestos; Final Rule (29 CFR 1926.1101)

7/1/98 edition

OSHA

The standard applies to employees exposed during the removal of asbestos and includes requirements for engineering controls, work practices, personal protective equipment, exposure assessment, medical surveillance, and training. An employer must presume or assume that resilient floor covering, including associated mastic and backing, in buildings constructed no later than 1980 contains asbestos unless the employer can show through the determination of an industrial hygienist using recognized analytical techniques that these materials do not contain asbestos. With few exceptions, the use of HEPA vacuum cleaners, wet methods, prompt clean up and disposal of debris in leak-tight containers are required for all asbesto removal operations. OSHA requires removal of tiles “intact” (see OSHA definition on “intact”) unless the employer demonstrates that intact removal is not possible. OSHA prohibits use of high speed abrasive disc saws, compressed air, dry clean up methods (except when using heat if tiles can be removed intact), sanding, rip-up of resilient sheet floor material, and mechanical chipping (if not conducted inside a negative pressure enclosure).

Settlement
Agreement with OSHA

#2/Azrock Industries, Hillcrest Floors, Armstrong World Industries, and GAF Corp. v. OSHA

6/15/95

OSHA

Describes the work practices required for removal of sheet vinyl flooring covering and floor tiles and associated adhesives. The settlement agreement contains interpretations and clarifications on OSHA’s regulations pertaining to the removal of asbestos containing flooring materials, such as job site inspections by competent persons, notification of adjacent employers, warning signs, wetting, employee training, removal of floor tiles using heat, and identification of and communication about the presence, location and quantity of asbestos containing material and presumed asbestos containing material in the work site or work area.

Guidance

#3/A Guide to Normal Demolition Practices Under the Asbestos NESHAP

9/92

EPA (NESHAP)

Describes various removal methods and the applicability of the asbestos NESHAP to them, such as water, amended water, solvents, dry ice, infrared machines and shot blasters.

AHERA Response Action

Interpretation

#4/100 Commonly Asked Questions About the New AHERA Asbestos-in-Schools Rule (Question #42)

5/88

EPA
(AHERA)

If floor tiles or adhesive material does not become friable during removal process, it would not be considered a response action under AHERA. If the floor tiles become friable during removal, it would be considered a response action requiring accredited personnel, and the use of air clearance testing. Sanding operations conducted to remove adhesive beneath tiles would render adhesive material friable.

Interpretation

#5/AHERA Policy Clarification on VAT Removal as a Response Action

7/92

EPA
(AHERA)

Removal of vinyl asbestos tiles (VAT) (also known as resilient floor ACM flooring or its adhesive) which involves sanding, grinding, mechanical chipping, drilling, sawing, cutting, or abrading the material has a high probability of rendering the material friable and capable of releasing asbestos fibers. Therefore, removal projects which employ any of these techniques, or any other technique that is likely to result in rendering the material friable (other than small scale, short duration projects), must be conducted as response actions, including use of an accredited project designer, accredited workers and supervisors, and air clearance. If the material is in such poor condition that it is already friable or is likely to become friable during the removal, then the removal must be conducted as a response action.

Demolition Practices



Guidance

#3/A Guide to Normal Demolition Practices Under the Asbestos NESHAP

9/92

EPA (NESHAP)

Details specific pre-demolition and demolition practices and their impact on asbestos vinyl tiles and/or mastic containing asbestos. Removal of asbestos-containing resilient floor tiles prior to demolition may be required when the substance to which the floor covering is attached is to be recycled or salvaged.

Wetting

Interpretation

#6/Nonfriable Asbestos-Containing Material

2/6/91

EPA (NESHAP)

In determining the adequacy of wetting, factors in addition to the absence of visible emissions are considered, e.g., the degree to which the asbestos containing material was mixed or penetrated with liquid.

Remain in Place

Regulation

#7/40 CFR Part 61 Subpart M-National Emission Standard for Asbestos

1998 edition

EPA (NESHAP)

Resilient floor covering does not be removed before demolition if it is nonfriable and is not in poor condition.

Interpretation

#8/Removal of VAT

6/19/91

EPA Region 9
(NESHAP)

Mastics are Category I materials. Therefore, if the mastic is not in poor condition, then it may remain in place during demolition. However, if the demolition or renovation techniques include sanding, abrading, or cutting techniques, then NESHAP work practices apply.

Interpretation

#9/Categorization of Mastic

4/9/91

EPA (NESHAP)

Where the floor tile is not friable and not being removed prior to demolition, the mastic can remain in the building during the demolition.

Burning

Regulation

#7/40 CFR Part 61 Subpart M-National Emission Standard for Asbestos

1998 edition

EPA (NESHAP)

If a building is demolished by burning, then resilient floor covering (friable and nonfriable) must be removed in accordance with NESHAP requirements before burning.

Interpretation

#9/Categorization of Mastic

4/9/91

EPA (NESHAP)

If the demolition will be done by burning, then all asbestos material, including floor mastic, must be removed in accordance with NESHAP prior to burning.

Enclosure

Regulation and
Interpretation

#33/40 CFR part 763 Asbestos-Containing Materials in Schools
and
#4/100 Commonly Asked Questions About the New AHERA Asbestos-in-Schools Rule (Question #43)

1998 edition
and
5/88

EPA
(AHERA)

Enclosure, one of the response actions under AHERA, is defined as “an airtight, impermeable, permanent barrier around asbestos containing building material to prevent the release of asbestos fibers into the air.” Carpeting is not impermeable, permanent, or airtight. Therefore, carpeting over damaged asbestos vinyl tiles would not be considered an enclosure, and since enclosures are defined as response actions, carpeting over damaged asbestos vinyl tiles would not be considered a response action.

Condition Determination

Guidance

#10/Asbestos/
NESHAP Regulated Asbestos Containing Materials Guidance

12/90

EPA
(NESHAP)

Resilient floor coverings must be removed before demolition only if they are in poor condition, are friable, or will be sanded, cut, ground or abraded. Describes how to determine whether material is in poor condition.

Shot Blasting

Interpretation

#11/Shot Blasting of Floor Tile Mastic

1/2/91

EPA
(NESHAP)

Shot blasting is an abrasive method of removing floor tile mastic and is therefore subject to the NESHAP. If used, then the mastic material must be adequately wet before and during the removal operation and must remain wet until collected for disposal.

Interpretation

#12/Wet Shot Blasting

3/29/91

EPA
(NESHAP)

A shot-blasting method for mastic removal, which incorporates wetting into the shot-blasting and waste collection stages, appears to meet the NESHAP work practice provisions for adequately wetting regulated material.

Solvents and Infrared Heaters

Interpretation

#9/Categorization of Mastic and
#13/Removal of Floor Tile Mastic Using Chemical Solvents

4/9/91 and 4/21/98

EPA
(NESHAP)
and EPA Region 7 (NESHAP)

The use of solvents to remove mastic would generally not cause the mastic to be crumbled, pulverized, or reduced to powder, as long as abrasive pads are not used to remove the mastic.

Interpretation

#8/Removal of VAT

6/19/91

EPA Region 9
(NESHAP)

Asbestos containing floor tiles or mastic in poor condition may be able to be removed by infrared heat or solvents without becoming RACM. If the material becomes friable, then it must be removed and disposed of according to NESHAP work practices.

Interpretation

#14/Floor Tile Removal by Infrared Heaters

1/8/91

EPA
(NESHAP)

The use of infrared heaters on floor tiles is not likely to damage the tiles such that it becomes subject to the NESHAP. If no part of the floor removal procedure subjects the floor tile to sanding, grinding, burning, or abrading and the material is nonfriable, then the operation would not be subject to the NESHAP, including the provisions for adequately wetting.

Settlement
Agreement with OSHA

#2/Azrock Industries, Hillcrest Floors, Armstrong World Industries, and GAF Corp. v. OSHA

6/15/95

OSHA

Tiles must be wetted prior to removal unless heat is used and tiles are removed intact. The requirement that respirators must be used does not apply when conducting a non-wet removal of intact floor tiles using heat, if other compliant work practices are used (as described in the Agreement).

Breakage Criteria

Interpretation

#15/Use of term “extensive breakage” as criterion for judging if floor tile has become or will become regulated

7/28/94

EPA
(NESHAP)

The extent of breakage which will render the asbestos-containing material friable depends to some degree on the condition of the ACM prior to the abatement operation. Therefore, it is difficult to make a general statement concerning the level of breakage which causes ACM to become regulated. A case by case determination must be made which considers the condition of the materials and forces which have or will act upon it.

Settlement
Agreement with OSHA

#2/Azrock Industries, Hillcrest Floors, Armstrong World Industries, and GAF Corp. v. OSHA

6/15/95

OSHA

"Intact" means that the asbestos containing material has not been crumbled, pulverized or otherwise deteriorated so that the asbestos is no longer likely to be bound with its matrix. Material which is cut or breaks into smaller pieces could still be considered “intact.”

Exposure Assessment

Settlement
Agreement with OSHA

#2/Azrock Industries, Hillcrest Floors, Armstrong World Industries, and GAF Corp. v. OSHA

6/15/95

OSHA

Employers may rely on the data in the OSHA rulemaking record to make negative exposure assessments for floor removal operations when: (1) only compliant work practices are used (described in the Agreement); (2) all workers engaged in the removal are trained in accordance with the OSHA regulations at 29 CFR §1926.1101(k)(9); and (3) before removal begins, a competent person assesses the job and determines that the flooring material is “intact” within the meaning of 29 CFR §1926.1101(b) and is likely to remain “intact” throughout the removal process.

"Intact" means that the asbestos containing material has not crumbled, been pulverized or otherwise deteriorated so that the asbestos is no longer likely to be bound with its matrix.

The "competent person" supervising the flooring removal project must inspect the site before removal operations for purposes of conducting an “initial exposure assessment” and inspect at any reasonable time upon employee request and at intervals sufficient to assess whether conditions have changed.

Carpet Replacement

Interpretation

#16/Removing Carpet Over Floor with Asbestos

3/14/96

EPA
(NESHAP)

Normally floor tile or carpet mastic is considered to be a Category I nonfriable material under the asbestos NESHAP. Carefully pulling up the old carpet and laying down new carpet would not be regulated by the asbestos NESHAP, unless the mastic was in poor condition prior to removal, or unless during removal, the mastic would be sanded, ground, cut, or abraded. If the asbestos appears to be isolated, EPA would allow the owner or operator to attempt to confirm the isolated nature of the asbestos-containing materials (by taking additional samples) and properly abate only the area that contains asbestos.

Asbestos in the Home

Guidance (pamphlet)

#17/Asbestos in the Home

Undated

Consumer Product Safety Comm. & EPA and
EPA
Region 10

Recommends practices for replacing or repairing asbestos containing floor tile or its mastic for homes, such as handling as little as possible, avoiding sanding or damaging tile, placing new flooring material directly over the old tiles or sheet, hiring a professional for removal, sealing off area, using protective equipment and clothing, removing dust through wet mopping procedure or HEPA vacuum cleaner, and keeping materials wet during removal procedures.

Guidance (pamphlet)

#18/ Asbestos in the Home: A Homeowner’s Guide

1992

Operations and Maintenance

Category

Title

Date

Author

Summary

Work Practices

Regulation

#1/Occupational Exposure to Asbestos; Final Rule (29 CFR 1926.1101)

7/1/96 edition

OSHA

Under the OSHA regulations, maintenance and repair operations which are likely to disturb asbestos containing material (including asbestos containing floor tiles, sheeting and mastics) that can be contained in a single glove or waste bag are considered Class III work, and are subject to specific engineering controls and work practices. OSHA regulates the maintenance of asbestos containing flooring materials as follows: sanding of asbestos-containing floor material is prohibited; stripping of finishes must be conducted using low-abrasion pads at speeds lower than 300 rpm and wet methods; and burnishing or dry buffing may be performed only on flooring which has sufficient finish so that the pad cannot contact the flooring material. Vacuum cleaners equipped with HEPA filters must be used. Flooring materials must not be dusted, swept dry, or vacuumed without using a HEPA filter. With few exceptions, wet methods, prompt clean up and disposal of debris in leak-tight containers are required for all asbestos maintenance operations.

Guidance

#19/Appendix C: Questions and Answers on the Occupational Exposure to Asbestos Standard

1/9/96

OSHA

Guidance

#20/Standard Methods for Conducting Asbestos O&M Work Practices

7/94

EPA (AHERA)

Based on National Institute of Building Sciences Guidance Manual: Asbestos Operations and Maintenance Work Practices, this document describes operations and maintenance (O&M) procedures (step-by-step) for:
1) removing small amounts of asbestos containing floor tile and/or mastic
2) for replacement of small amounts of vinyl sheet flooring with asbestos containing backing.

Wax and Finish Coat Stripping

Guidance

#21/Recommended Interim Guidelines for Stripping Asbestos-Containing Floors and Recommended Interim Guidelines for Stripping Asbestos-Containing Tile Floors

1/25/90

EPA
(AHERA)

Provides basic guidelines to use when stripping wax or finish coat from asbestos-containing floor coverings, such as stripping floors while wet, running machines at slow speed, selecting the least abrasive pad possible.

Labeling

Guidance

#19/Appendix C: Questions and Answers on the Occupational Exposure to Asbestos Standard

1/9/96

OSHA

Since it is not often feasible to put labels on floors, alternatives may be used. If the object is to forewarn employees who may be potentially exposed during floor cleaning operations and have access to the material, then the label could be posted on the buffing machine. When outside contractors are used, then the employer must post signs and labels. For internal employees, a sign or label for asbestos flooring can be posted in the equipment room if asbestos containimg floors are being serviced by employees using a common equipment room every day. The use of a work order could serve as a method to inform maintenance employees of those areas where asbestos materials such as flooring have been identified in the building survey.

Interpretation

#22/Warning Labels and Signs and
#23/Labeling vs. Work Orders

1/24/96 and 2/16/96

OSHA

Seismic Bracing

Interpretation

#24/Applicability of Asbestos Standard to Certain Work Activities

4/21/98

OSHA

Installing a molly anchor or other fasteners into floor materials such as asbestos containing resilient floor tiles or sheeting in order to seismically brace a file cabinet, bookcase, etc. must be evaluated on a case by case basis to determine whether it would be covered by the OSHA asbestos construction standard or general industry standard. If the task is difficult or complex enough to require that construction workers or maintenance persons or repair persons perform the work, then the work would be Class III work covered by the construction standard. If the task is simple or easy enough not to require that construction workers, maintenance or repair persons perform the work, then the work is covered by the general industry standard.

Classification, Sampling and Analysis

Category

Title

Date

Author

Summary

Friability

Regulation

#7/40 CFR Part 61 Subpart M-National Emission Standard for Asbestos

11/90

EPA (NESHAP)

Resilient floor covering that has become friable is considered regulated asbestos-containing material and is subject to the asbestos NESHAP, including notification, procedures for asbestos emission control and disposal requirements. This includes where resilient floor covering which will be or has been subjected to sanding, grinding, cutting, or abrading and there is a high probability of the material becoming crumbled, pulverized, or reduced to powder by the forces expected to act on material in the course of demolition or renovation operations.

Interpretation

#25/Sealants/Mastics

7/31/92

EPA (NESHAP)

Pliable asbestos-containing sealants and mastics that are in good condition and not friable would be considered Category I nonfriable ACM and therefore will become regulated ACM only if they become friable or are subjected to sanding, grinding, cutting or abrading.

Interpretation

#26/Mechanical Means that Render Category I Material Friable

1/31/96

EPA Region 9 (NESHAP)

For floor tile and mastic, the mechanical means which would render materials friable include bead blasters, rotating blade scrapers (buffers with blades), jackhammers, mechanical sanders, rotating blade saws. Allowable manual methods which keep the materials non-friable include scrapers (extensive breakage may render the material friable), dry ice, wetting, solvents (for mastic). Allowable mechanical means which keep the materials non-friable include infrared machines and gas or electric powered chisels (extensive breakage may render the materials friable).

Interpretation

#27 & #28/ Floor Tile Mastic as Regulated Material

10/3/96
1/31/96

EPA Region 9 (NESHAP)

If mechanical means are used to remove the asbestos containing mastic, then it would be classified as NESHAP regulated friable material.

Definition

Interpretation

#27 & #28/Mastic Remaining Mixed with Concrete

1/31/96
10/3/96

EPA Region 9
(NESHAP)

If the asbestos containing mastics have been removed from the subfloor but some materials remain that has been mixed with the concrete and cannot be analyzed as a separate and identifiable layer and has been analyzed and found to be less than 1% asbestos, then it would not be considered asbestos and would not be regulated under NESHAP.

Sample Analysis

Interpretation

#29/Advisory Regarding Availability of an Improved Asbestos Bulk Sample Analysis Test Method

Federal Register
8/1/94 (59 FR 38970)

EPA
(AHERA
and
NESHAP)

EPA recommends that local education agencies which have PLM laboratory results indicating floor tiles to be nonasbestos containing either assume them to be asbestos-containing or resample and analyze them by the 1993 EPA Test Method. Copies of this method are published under EPA/600/R-93/116, July 1993.

Guidance

#30/Asbestos Sampling Bulletin: Supplementary Guidance on Bulk Sample Collection and Analysis

9/30/94

EPA
(AHERA
and
NESHAP)

Provides guidance on the adoption and use of an improved method for the analysis of asbestos in bulk samples, which is especially useful for detecting the presence of asbestos in asbestos containing floor tiles and other building materials that may contain asbestos in low concentrations.

EPA recommends that multi-layered samples that have been found to be non-asbestos containing in schools be resampled before they are disturbed unless lab reports are available documenting that all layers were previously sampled and analyzed.

NESHAP Classification

Interpretation

#31/NESHAP Classification for Sheet Vinyl Floor Covering

5/24/96

EPA
(NESHAP)

Resilient floor covering (asbestos-containing floor tiles, including asphalt and vinyl asbestos tile and sheet vinyl floor covering containing more than 1% asbestos as determined by PLM), is classified as Category I nonfriable asbestos-containing material.

Regulation

#7/40 CFR Part 61 Subpart M-National Emission Standard for Asbestos

11/90

EPA
(NESHAP)

Floor tiles and vinyl coverings (linoleum) are included in the term “resilient floor coverings” and are classified as Category I non-friable materials. Determinations for Category II materials must be made on a case-by-case basis. Floor tile mastic may be treated as Category I materials.

Interpretation

#32/Nonfriable Asbestos-Containing Material
and
#9/Categorization of Mastic
and
#24/Removal of Floor Tile Mastic Using Chemical Solvents

2/6/91 and 4/9/91
and
4/21/98

EPA
(NESHAP)
and
EPA Region 7

Mastic may be considered Category I nonfriable ACM because when dry, it is a hard substance which is difficult to crumble, pulveriaze or reduce to powder with hand pressure. Therefore, it would not be subject to NESHAP when it is pliable, in good condition and has not or will not be subject to sanding, grinding, cutting or abrading. However, the chemical solvent used during abatement drastically alters the properties of the mastic material, resulting in breaking down and dissolving of the binding agents. If the mastic/solvent slurry is not properly cleaned up once it dries, the solvent evaporates, and the material which remains becomes powdery, then it would be considered friable and be regulated under NESHAP (assuming it meets the 160 square foot threshold). Use of a low-spped floor buffer or squeegee to wipe or mop up the slurry would not cause the material to become friable at this point; however if abrasive discs are used during the activity then the activity would be regulated under NESHAP.

Interpretation

#25/Sealants/Mastics

7/31/92

EPA
(NESHAP)

In order for sheet vinyl to be classified as NESHAP Category I, non-friable materials, the asbestos must be in the vinyl material. The paper backing which contains asbestos would be classified as either Category II nonfriable or RACM, depending on the condition.

Training and Accreditation

Category

Title

Date

Author

Summary

Inspector

Interpretation

#34/Clarification regarding the applicability of the asbestos MAP inspector training requirements to the replacement of resilient floor covering.

4/8/94

EPA
(MAP/
AHERA)

MAP inspector accreditation is not required for the examination of existing resilient floor covering if a person visually or physically examines the material as part of the evaluation process involved in replacing it (e.g., to evaluate the adherence capabilities of the existing material, to determine its suitability as a foundation for new flooring, or to determine the need for leveling compounds) where the material has not been sanded, ground, mechanically chipped, drilled, abraded or cut (including sawing but excluding shearing, slicing, or punching). Resilient floor covering material usually is not friable.

Interpretation

#35/Applicability of the Asbestos Model Accreditation Plan Inspector Training Requirements to the Replacement of Resilient Floor Tile

4/18/94

EPA
(MAP/
AHERA)

An AHERA accredited inspector is required to conduct a visual or physical examination in situations where resilient floor covering material has been sanded, grounded, mechanically chipped, drilled, abraded, or cut and is being examined to determine its friability before replacement.

Competent Person and Worker Training

Settlement
Agreement with OSHA
and
Regulation

#2/Azrock Industries, Hillcrest Floors, Armstrong World Industries, and GAF Corp. v. OSHA and
#1/Occupational Exposure to Asbestos; Final Rule (29 CFR §1926.1101)

6/15/95 and
7/1/98 edition

OSHA

OSHA interprets its rule and this settlement agreement to provide that removal of flooring material in which the material is not removed “intact” must be supervised by a competent person who has successfully completed a training course meeting the criteria of EPA’s Model Accreditation Plan for supervisors. “Intact” means that the asbestos containing material has not been crumbled, pulverized or otherwise deteriorated so that the asbestos is no longer likely to be bound with its matrix.

A flooring removal project in which compliant work practices (described in the Agreement) are used and the material is removed “intact” may be supervised by a competent person who has successfully completed a 12-hour training course.

An employee who has completed an 8-hour training course on specific work practices and engineering controls on asbestos containing flooring and/or mastic removal and uses compliant work practices may conduct removals of intact flooring material. Training in the precautions needed when removing non-intact flooring material is required before the employee may engage in removal of such material, as described in 29 CFR §1926.1101(k)(9)(iv).

AHERA Regulation and Interpretation

#33/40 CFR part 763 Asbestos-Containing Materials in Schools
and #5/AHERA Policy Clarification on VAT Removal as a Response Action

7/92 and
7/1/98 edition

EPA (AHERA)

Removal of vinyl asbestos tiles (VAT) (also known as resilient floor ACM flooring or its adhesive) which is in such poor condition that it is already friable or is likely to become friable during the removal (other than small scale, short duration projects) must be designed by an MAP-accredited project designer and conducted by MAP-accredited workers and supervisors.

Project Designer

Interpretation

#36/Use of AHERA Project Designer When Applying an Encapsulant to Non-friable VAT Floor

7/14/92

EPA
(AHERA)

Do not need to use AHERA accredited Project Designer for a project in which non-friable asbestos-containing building material is encapsulated.