Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral fiber. The amphibole asbestos, amosite, crocidolite, actinolite, anthophyllite, and tremolite, are long, straight, and narrow shape fibers. The chrysotile fibers are wavy and is classified as serpentine. Building materials contained any of the types of asbestos can be classified as friable or non-friable.

Friable: Asbestos containing materials can be crumbled or reduced to harmful dust by hand pressure. Examples: insulation and fire proofing.

Non-Friable: Asbestos containing materials generally require a very significant amount of pressure before the harmful dust can be generated. Examples: cement pipe and floor tiles.

Is asbestos harmful?
t certainly can be. Asbestos is a known carcinogen. Long term studies link asbestos to mesothelioma, asbestosis, and lung cancer. However with appropriate precautions and safety measures, individuals can prevent serious health repercussions. The University takes a very conservative approach to work involving asbestos-containing materials in order to protect employees, students, and the public.
Visit the following links for more information on asbestos.
    Texas Department of State Health Services
    Environmental Protection Agency
    Occupational Safety and Health Administration
    Center for Disease Control and Prevention
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