ASTM WK39518

    New Practice for Asbestos Exposure Assessments for Repetitive Maintenance and Installation Tasks

    (What is a Work Item?)

    Developed by Subcommittee: D22.07 | Committee D22 | Contact Staff Manager


    1. Scope

    1.1 This practice establishes procedures for assessing the exposure of workers to airborne fibers who perform repetitive tasks of short duration in which small quantities of asbestos-containing materials must be disturbed to perform maintenance and installation activities. 1.2 This practice describes the facilities and equipment for performing the tasks under controlled conditions for the express purpose of collecting personal air samples to determine worker exposure. The tasks are performed on actual asbestos-containing materials during exposure assessment tests and precautions are taken for personal protection and avoiding contamination of adjacent spaces. 1.3 This practice describes the air sample collection procedures, the analytical methods for the air samples, and the calculation of worker exposure including the use of statistical confidence limits. The results are applied to the current job as defined herein for determining worker protection such as respiratory protection or for other purposes as determined by the competent person responsible for the current job. 1.4 The results of the tests shall not be applied to current jobs that are expected to differ substantially from the test conditions in work practices, material properties, or other factors that might affect the concentration of airborne asbestos fibers. 1.5 This practice is not intended to be used for asbestos abatement work for which the objective is the removal of asbestos-containing materials. It is designed to assess exposures for short-term repetitive tasks. Compliance with regulatory requirements as to the purpose of the work and limits on the quantity of asbestos-containing materials disturbed is the responsibility of the user. 1.6 Hazards-Asbestos fibers are acknowledged carcinogens. Breathing asbestos fibers can result in disease of the lungs including asbestosis, lung cancer, and mesothelioma. Precautions should be taken to avoid breathing airborne asbestos particles from materials known or suspected to contain asbestos. See 2.2 for regulatory requirements addressing asbestos. 1.7 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

    Work is routinely performed during maintenance and installation of equipment when small amounts of asbestos-containing materials are disturbed for short periods of time. This is not asbestos abatement for the purpose of removing asbestos; the disturbance is incidental but necessary to performing the maintenance or installation task. The OSHA Construction Industry regulations for assessing worker exposure during such tasks are interpreted in different ways by different people, and there is a need to standardize the methodology for conducting tests under controlled conditions, analyzing the air sample data, determining statistical confidence limits for comparison with the OSHA Permissible Exposure Limits and other criteria, and providing guidance to the employers competent person for determining respiratory protection requirements for work covered by exposure assessments.


    asbestos; assessment; testing; air samples; analysis; statistical; confidence limits; competent person; occupational; environmental

    The title and scope are in draft form and are under development within this ASTM Committee.

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    Work Item Status

    Date Initiated:

    Technical Contact:
    Andrew Oberta


    D22 (14-01)

    Ballot Item Approved as D7886-2014 and Pending Publication