ASBESTOS ABATEMENT FAQ

Breath Easier.

Asbestos removal from your home or business property requires a precise and careful abatement process. Our First Response teams seal off the affected areas and use specialized equipment to remove asbestos—without releasing harmful fibres into the air.

Q. How do I know if I have asbestos in my house?

A. You can’t tell if you have asbestos in your home just by looking.  A sample of the material in question will need to be taken and analysed.  Asbestos is commonly found in drywall mud, insulation, and flooring.  (For more information on potential sources of asbestos, please review this diagram supplied by WorkSafeBC.)  Many houses that were built during or before the 1980’s are at risk of being contaminated with asbestos, however it is possible for newer homes to contain it as well.

Q. How do I get a sample tested?

A. Our technicians at First Response are trained and confident in knowing what should be tested and how to properly collect samples. Samples are then shipped to Total Safety, an environmental laboratory in Burnaby, to be analysed.  Once we receive the results, the record of analysis will be forwarded on to you.

 Q. How much does it cost to get a sample tested?

A. Depending on how many materials you need sampled and how quickly you need the results, asbestos testing can cost as little as $125 + tax.  Please see below:

Results in 1 Day - $150 + tax (each additional sample costs $60)

Results in 2 Days - $140 + tax (each additional sample costs $50)

Results in 4 Days - $125 + tax (each additional sample costs $35)

 Q. Can I take my own sample?

A. If you feel comfortable handling the material, you can take a sample yourself.  The sample itself only needs to be 1”-2” big.  You can find more detailed instructions on proper sample handling on the Total Safety website, along with their mailing address and testing prices.  However if you take your own sample you will need to send it direct to the lab at Total Safety as First Response is unable to confirm the chain of custody.   

 Q. What should I do if I find asbestos in my house?

A. If the asbestos is safely bonded to the material it is being used with and there is no danger of fibres becoming airborne then it is safe to leave. The asbestos may pose a risk if you plan to disturb the material (e.g. renovations) or the material is damaged.  At this point, a specialized expert will need to step in to remove the asbestos.

 Q. How do I schedule an asbestos abatement job?

A. Give our office a call!  We’ll schedule one of our technicians to come out for an inspection.  They will determine the scope of work required to safely remove the asbestos-containing material from your home.  There are several WCB regulations that we are required to follow when completing an abatement.  For more information, please visit WorkSafeBC.

 Q. Can I dispose of asbestos-containing materials (ACM) at First Response?

A. First Response is not licensed to accept ACM for disposal. 

To dispose of drywall contaminated with asbestos, please call Sumas Environmental at 604.682.6678.

To dispose of any other materials contaminated with asbestos, please call the Sechelt Landfill at 604.885.6889 to schedule a drop-off.  They require at least 24 hours notice and only accept ACM from Tuesday to Friday between 10am to 2pm.  More information on proper disposal procedures and fees can be found on the SCRD Asbestos page.

For large renovations or demolitions, please call HLI HazMat Logistics at 604.536.7801.  They are a fully licensed environmental transporter based out of South Surrey who assist in asbestos disposal.  They provide haul-away bins as well as bag pick-up, depending on the size of your project.