Breakthrough technology in the fight against asbestos

THERE ARE 6 million tonnes of asbestos spread across 1.5 million buildings in the UK, including up to 80% of schools and 94% of public buildings such as hospitals. Any building built or renovated before 1999 may contain asbestos.

Asbestos is still the leading cause of work-related deaths in the UK today, with over 5,000 deaths recorded each year – despite the fact that it has been banned in the UK since 1999. Shawcity is pleased to announce the biggest advancement in asbestos technology in decades with the Alert PRO 1000 from Alert Technology Ltd.

All types of asbestos contain fibers which, if airborne, can be inhaled and cause serious and fatal diseases such as mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, asbestosis and pleural thickening. These diseases do not affect individuals immediately and can take years to develop. However, by the time of diagnosis, it is too late to take preventive measures.

Undamaged, sealed materials are unlikely to release fibers and pose a low risk. However, if asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) are disturbed or begin to deteriorate, asbestos fibers can be released into the air and inhaled by workers and other residents. Buildings with a high level of activity and daily passing have an increased risk of accidental damage and therefore accelerated deterioration.

Traditionally, asbestos measurement and detection meant that samples of materials suspected of containing asbestos were sent to laboratories for analysis, or that consultants collected samples on site and performed a manual count of fibers.

Taking the sample itself carries a risk of interfering fibers and the exercise only reflects the conditions at a single point in time. Until now, it has not been possible to detect airborne asbestos fibers in real time.

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However, a recent technological innovation has enabled the development of the Alert PRO 1000 as an early warning device for asbestos fibers in the air. Developed for over ten years with the aim of saving lives, Alert is portable and easy to use. It works alongside the traditional method and continuously assesses the airborne environment and issues a real-time alert when ACMs have released toxic fibers into the air. This allows workers to evacuate the area and immediately initiate safety measures. Alert’s time-stamped data also provides critical information to help teams determine which events or activities are leading to the release of asbestos fibers.

This important early warning enables an immediate and proactive safety response to avoid the risk of prolonged exposure. Alert is the only known device capable of distinguishing asbestos fibers from other non-asbestos fibers in the air in real time, and uses patented light scattering technology, the paramagnetic properties of asbestos fibers and complex algorithmic statistical analysis, which has a reliability of 99% % just works.

Alert PRO 1000 is best suited for indoor use where the substance of a structure is being disrupted by works such as maintenance, construction, restoration, improvement and demolition. Alert PRO can be used in a specific environment to show that the air contains asbestos. For example, it is ideal for monitoring the area around a decontamination or exclusion zone or at a perimeter and the alarm will activate if asbestos is present in the air.

Alert PRO is designed to improve safety and reduce operational costs and liability. It is suitable for more than 30 global industrial sector applications worldwide. The device can successfully identify any type of asbestos and is easy to install and use with no special training required.

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The Alert PRO 1000 has the potential to save lives in numerous global industrial sectors including:

Construction and demolition Asbestos removal Maintenance and renovation Waste management Industrial hygiene Emergency services, defense and disaster recovery Tunneling and mining Ship and vessel decommissioning Nuclear decommissioning Facilities rental and repair Management.

The Alert PRO 1000 can be rented or purchased from Shawcity. Alert PRO 1000 features include user configurable settings, LED and audible alarm, LCD screen, 8GB of onboard memory, 8 hour battery, historical data, data download via USB, an Alert Data Viewer platform for reporting and a robust, easy-to-decontaminate housing. Upgrade to the Alert PRO 2000 model for cloud-based data.

For further information, click here. To request a free demonstration of this unique technology, contact Shawcity on 01367 899419 or email: [email protected]