Asbestos is naturally occurring family of fibrous mineral substance. The typical size of asbestos fibers are not generally visible to the human eye. When disturbed, asbestos fibers may become suspended in the air for many days, thus increasing the extent of asbestos exposure for individuals within the area.
EPA regulations identify the following tiypes of asbestos: chrysotile, amosite, crocidolite, anthophyllite, actinolite, and tremolite. Approximately 95 percent of all asbestos used in commercial products is chrysotile. Asbestos became a popular commercial product because it is non-combustible, resistant to corrosion, has a high tensile strength, and a low electrical conductivity. However, asbestos had very little use until the early 1900’s when it was employed s thermal insulation for steam engines. Since then, asbestos fibers have been mixed with various types of binding materials to create an estimated 3,000 different commercial products.