If you own a commercial building of any sort and you find asbestos on the property, you are not necessarily legally obligated to have it removed. Most areas allow the asbestos to stay if it's properly contained. However, this doesn't mean that it's always a good idea to keep the asbestos in place and just employ containment measures. Note a few considerations to keep in mind when it comes to a commercial property and asbestos removal versus containment.
1. Management and safety program
Many areas that allow asbestos to remain in place may require building owners or business owners to maintain a management program. This might mean regular audits of the area containing the asbestos and checks on the containment measures. You might also need to keep records of what you're doing to keep workers safe, and inform your workers as to the presence of asbestos and all your containment and protective measures.
Consider if this might be expensive and cumbersome for you and your business. You would usually need to pay this auditor to perform these regular checks, and also employ expensive safety measures for workers, including providing them with breathing apparatus, coveralls, and the like. Depending on the extent of asbestos and how it might affect your overall business, it might be less expensive to simply have it removed altogether.
2. Asbestos becoming airborne
While you may have containment measures in place now, note if there is a risk of the asbestos becoming airborne anyway. For example, you may not have heavy trucks in and out of your facility, but nearby facilities might start processing orders that mean heavy-duty delivery trucks come by at a regular basis. The vibrations from these trucks might surpass your containment measures and cause the asbestos to become airborne. Nearby construction can also create vibrations that might cause the asbestos to become airborne despite your containment measures. If there is any such risk, you might consider having the asbestos removed.
3. Resale value
If you should ever decide to sell your building or your business, you might consider how asbestos could affect the resale value. Even with the best containment measures, new buyers might not want to have a building with asbestos in any area. Having it removed well before you put the building on the market can be a good idea so you know that you have time to ensure all traces of it are gone, thereby protecting the building's resale value.