Chapter 5 – Asbestos Safety

A. References:

  • WSU Asbestos Management Plan (attached)
  • SPPM 5.22 Asbestos Safety: General asbestos requirements for the University Employee
  • SPPM S80.80 Respirator Protection Program
  • WAC 296-65-001 through 050 – Asbestos Removal and Encapsulation
  • WAC 296-62-077 through 07761– Asbestos, Tremolite, Anthophyllite, and Actinolite

This document is a draft

B. Appendices:

  1. Appendix A: Asbestos Management Plan
  2. Appendix B: Asbestos Work Hazard Assessment

C. Scope

This chapter covers requirements for EH&S employees that, as part of their job assignment, may come into contact with or disturb asbestos. The WSU Asbestos Management Plan (Appendix A) is the primary policy document for asbestos management at WSU and must be followed to meet regulatory safety and disposal requirements.


Asbestos Program Manager: An employee assigned by the EH&S department to act as the primary asbestos resource and Competent Person for EH&S employees and maintain the WSU Asbestos Management Program.

AHERA Building Inspector: One who has successfully completed the asbestos building inspector training requirements under 40 CFR 763 from an EPA accredited training source.

AHERA Project Designer: One who has successfully completed the asbestos project designer training requirements under 40 CFR 763 from an EPA accredited training source.

Asbestos-containing Material (ACM): any material containing more than 1% asbestos.

Asbestos Project or Asbestos Work: the construction, demolition, repair, remodeling, maintenance or renovation of any public or private building or structure, mechanical piping equipment or system involving the demolition, removal, encapsulation, salvage, or disposal of material or outdoor activity releasing or likely to release asbestos fibers into the air.

Assumed ACM: Assumed asbestos-containing material. Any suspect material that is not wood, metal, glass or structural concrete and has not been characterized by an AHERA Building Inspector.

Competent Person: One who is capable of identifying existing asbestos hazards in the workplace and selecting the appropriate control strategy for asbestos exposure, who has the authority to take prompt corrective measures to eliminate them as specified in WAC 296-62-07728. For the purpose of this document, the Competent Person for EH&S is the Asbestos Program Manager.

Disturb or Disturbance: activities that disrupt the matrix of ACM or PACM, crumble or pulverize ACM or assumed ACM, or generate visible debris from ACM or assumed ACM. This term includes activities that disrupt the matrix of ACM or assumed ACM, render ACM or assumed ACM friable, or generate visible dust or debris.

Regulated Area: An area established by the employer to demarcate areas where asbestos work is conducted, and any adjoining area where debris and waste from such asbestos work accumulate; and a work area within which airborne concentrations of asbestos, exceed or can reasonably be expected to exceed the permissible exposure limit (PEL)

E. Training

  • All EH&S employees will receive initial hire asbestos awareness training provided online at Training must be completed annually thereafter. More comprehensive training noted in the next bullet point below may be used to fulfill this requirement.
  • Additional training is required for employees whom may come into contact with non-intact or disturbed ACM or assumed ACM. Supervisors must ensure this training is completed and documented before allowing employees to perform those duties. Refer to Appendix A WSU Asbestos Management Program and the Asbestos Program Manager for more information.

F. General Requirements

  • Refer to the WSU Asbestos Management Plan (attached) for specific WSU policy and procedures regarding asbestos management and safety.
  • The EH&S Asbestos Program Manager will fulfill Competent Person duties for EH&S personnel or other WSU employees throughout campus from emergencies that may have disturbed asbestos. This person is also responsible for the WSU Asbestos Management Plan and acts the primary resource for EH&S employees regarding asbestos safety. The Asbestos Management Plan must be updated, as needed, and meet regulatory requirements.
  • All employees must comply with all appropriate safety and health rules and practices on contractor controlled job sites. This may include additional PPE, safety clothing or areas designated for restricted access. Supervisors are responsible for reviewing these requirements and ensuring employee compliance in order to perform the work safely.
  • All employees that enter an asbestos regulated area where respiratory protection is required must wear the appropriate respiratory protection assigned by a Competent Person. A Competent Person may be the Asbestos Program Manager or qualified person designated as such by a contractor that is approved by the Asbestos Program Manager.

G. Task Specific Requirements

Good Faith Asbestos Inspections: Asbestos bulk sampling for the purpose of a good faith inspection or otherwise must be conducted by an employee with a current AHERA Building Inspector certificate. Additional hazards may be present in the work area that must be addressed before collecting bulk samples. Such hazards include, but are not limited to hazardous energy (e.g. electricity, radio frequency, mechanical energy) noise, elevated work, penetration (sharp objects), and compression (pinch points). Employees must conduct a hazard assessment prior to each inspection. Supervisors must review hazard assessments, ensure proper PPE is used and required training is completed and documented before the task commences.

3rd Party Asbestos Abatement Oversight: Oversight of all in-house or contracted abatement work must be conducted by an employee with a current AHERA Building Inspector and/or an AHERA Project Designer training certificate. Since hazards may vary greatly at different job sites, employees must conduct a hazard assessment for each oversight location. Supervisors must review hazard assessments and ensure proper PPE is used and required training is completed and documented before the task commences.

Exposure Monitoring: The Asbestos Program Manager is assigned as the Competent Person to manage exposure air monitoring of EH&S employees that is required in WAC 296-62-07709.

Housekeeping/Custodial Procedures: Refer to Section 6.0 of the Asbestos Management Plan.

Asbestos Abatement Work: Refer to Section 7.0 of the Asbestos Management Plan for training and procedures required to perform asbestos abatement work at WSU.

Construction, Demolition, Repair, Remodeling, Maintenance or Renovation Activities: All employees involved in such activities including project managers, supervisors, leads and workers performing the work are responsible for their roles and responsibilities outlined in the attached Asbestos Management Plan.