Why are asbestos regulations important?
EPA estimates that asbestos fibers contribute to 7,500 deaths per year in the United States. Most uses of asbestos have been banned since asbestos was found to cause lung cancer and other respiratory diseases in humans. However, it is estimated that 30 million tons of asbestos were used in thousands of building products since the late 1800s. Asbestos-containing building materials are commonly found in buildings constructed prior to the mid-1970s. The asbestos regulations currently in place are necessary to ensure that people are not exposed to airborne asbestos fibers when buildings are remodeled or demolished.
What are the statutes and regulations and to whom do they apply?
The regulations apply to remodeling or demolition projects which occur in public or commercial buildings. Private residences and apartment buildings with four or fewer dwellings are exempt from the regulations. Any project that is subject to these regulations requires a notification to the department within 10 working days prior to the start of the project.
The statutes that apply to asbestos are found in South Dakota Codified Law 34-44. The emission standards for asbestos during remodeling or demolition projects are adopted from the federal standards in Administrative Rules of South Dakota 74:36:08. These federal standards are found in 40 CFR Part 61, Subpart M.
Contractors or workers who are involved in asbestos projects are required to have the appropriate training and a South Dakota asbestos certification card. The training and certification regulations are found in Administrative Rules of South Dakota 74:31.