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#38162 - 05/16/04 09:49 PM Big Mistake  
Attic Rat  Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 524
Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
... The other day,it was my unfortunate task to run a feeder line from the mains to the sub-panel in the basement..The house is about 50-60 yrs old,and unbeknownst to me,contained asbestos on the basement ceiling,..in panels 4'x8'and painted white..In another portion of the basement there were panels of 3/8"plywood,which is what I thought was installed throughout.I started drilling thru this crap,with a 4" hole saw,when I found out it wasn't plywood,but the dreaded asbestos..I stopped drilling immediately,but not soon enough..the powder was all over my arms,and although I washed,I'm afraid I breathed some of this crap in..of course I wasn't wearing PPE for I thought I was only drilling thru plywood.. Am I a goner ?? I mean I'm hearing horror stories of this biting you in the rear end later on..What should I do,...besides pray and take out a Life Insurance policy on myself.?? Can one isolated encounter be potentially deadly,or do you have to be around it awhile??
Scared as Hell!!
Russ


.."if it ain't fixed,don't break it...call a Licensed Electrician"

Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades

#38163 - 05/16/04 10:02 PM Re: Big Mistake  
CTwireman  Offline
Member
Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 840
Connecticut, USA
I would not be overly concerned. Plumbers encounter old asbestos on a daily basis, and many old timer plumbers used to mix the stuff to put on pipes and boilers. From what I know, it's the long term exposure that causes problems.


Peter

#38164 - 05/16/04 10:04 PM Re: Big Mistake  
FWL_Engineer  Offline
Member
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 50
Barnet, Hertfordshire, UK
Russ, if this is the only exposure you ever have then the damage should be minimal if any, so I would not worry yourself unduly.

There is also that matter of the type of asbestos it was. If it was white, then the large chrystals are unlikely to have made it to your lungs for such a brief encounter, Brown is a different matter, but it still boils down to exposure.

What this situation should tell you is;

1: Always fully investigate any unidentified surface BEFORE attacking it with power tools or anything that will damage it.

2: Always wear the correct PPE if you in a situation were you will have dust etc falling into your face..drilling near your head will always cause this.

3: If you cannot identify any material or you are unsure, always go for caution and call in someone who will now and can identify the material.

It is better to feel a bit foolish, than make a mistake, prove your foolish and possibly cause yourself or someone else serious harm or worse.


#38165 - 05/16/04 10:36 PM Re: Big Mistake  
Edward  Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 308
California
I believe you have to be exposed to it for a while in order for it to be damaging.

Relax see a doctor and do not let your worries damage you.

Edward


Thanks
Edward

#38166 - 05/16/04 10:41 PM Re: Big Mistake  
Attic Rat  Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 524
Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
...Thank you,guys for your prompt replies!!
The powder was white,and I didn't cough or gag afterwards,...God willing,I'll be OK,..couldn't be worse than the damn cancer sticks I abuse daily..I gotta quit them before it's too late..if the asbetos don't beat them to it..I'm 41 and I smoke more than an old Chevy,...It's the stress,...or my reaction to it..Oh well,I'm feelin' a bit more relaxed after talkin' to you guys...I went to a few web-sites for Asbetosis,and Mesothelioma diseases,...REAL SCAREY STUFF,man!!! So I started getting those "psychosomatic" symptoms...just from readin' about it...
...FWL,I realize I should of had my gear on, and it was plain pig-headed of me to do without it...Never Again!! Thanx again, bro's!!
Russ


.."if it ain't fixed,don't break it...call a Licensed Electrician"

#38167 - 05/16/04 10:50 PM Re: Big Mistake  
twh  Offline
Member
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 903
Regina, Sask.
I discussed this with a doctor a few years ago. People who are exposed to asbestos have problems at about the same rate as smokers and, like smoking, it is more serious with long term exposure. As a note to this, long term smokers who have long term exposure to asbestos are at high risk.

You're going to live. What are you going to do about the asbestos?


#38168 - 05/16/04 10:57 PM Re: Big Mistake  
Attic Rat  Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 524
Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
Quote
You're going to live. What are you going to do about the asbestos?


...I'd told the H.O. about my "encounter" and she blew me away by telling me she knew there was "some asbestos" down there,but wasn't exactly sure where...Well,TWH, I sure as heck showed her!! I was mad as heck at her that she knew about it,and said nothing to me,knowing full well I had alot of work to do in that basement...She looked at me like it was my own dumb fault,...which it was,but I should've been advised about what evil lurked in her creepy,dog-poop filled basement..
Russ


.."if it ain't fixed,don't break it...call a Licensed Electrician"

#38169 - 05/16/04 11:17 PM Re: Big Mistake  
twh  Offline
Member
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 903
Regina, Sask.
Quote
creepy,dog-poop filled basement

I bet now you wish you had listened to your teachers and stayed in school.


#38170 - 05/16/04 11:18 PM Re: Big Mistake  
480 kicks like a mule  Offline
Member
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 13
leesburg, ga - usa
I think that the "dog poop" would be more hazardous than the asbestous...lol

you'll be fine...just check your shoes before you get in your vehicle...lol

Mike


...Despite all my RAGE, I am STILL just a rat in a cage...

#38171 - 05/16/04 11:43 PM Re: Big Mistake  
Dave55  Offline
Member
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 697
Crystal Lake, Illinois, USA
If you're really concerned about your health, give up the smokes (it took me three tries) AND wear a respirator when you're in an attic, crawl space, or drilling or sawing over your head.

I was told by a safety equiptment salesperson years ago that a dust type respirator will filter out asbestos (of course you'd want additional gear for your hair and clothes).

Dave


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