Asbestos is a mineral fiber that has been used commonly in a variety of building construction materials for insulation and as a fire-retardant. Because of its fiber strength and heat resistant properties, asbestos has been used for a wide range of manufactured goods, mostly in building materials (roofing shingles, ceiling and floor tiles, paper products, and asbestos cement products), friction products (automobile clutch, brake, and transmission parts), heat-resistant fabrics, packaging, gaskets, and coatings.

When asbestos-containing materials are damaged or disturbed by repair, remodeling or demolition activities, microscopic fibers become airborne and can be inhaled into the lungs, where they can cause significant health problems.

One of the most common sources of asbestos exposure is through jobs in mining, making or using asbestos products. This includes construction, particularly building demolition and renovation; the manufacture of asbestos products; and automotive brake and clutch repair work. 

NYCOSH Asbestos Fact Sheets:

Asbestos Fact Sheet #1: What is Asbestos?

Asbestos Fact Sheet #2: OSHA Asbestos Standards

Asbestos Fact Sheet #3: New York State Asbestos Law

Asbestos Fact Sheet #4: New York State Asbestos Control Law

Asbestos Fact Sheet #5: The Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA)

Asbestos Fact Sheet #6: Respirators - Information for Asbestos Workers

Other Resources:

Asbestos site, EPA

OSHA Asbestos Page

Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization

NYCOSH Offices:

New York City
61 Broadway - Suite 1710
NY, NY 10006
(Fax) 212-227-9854

Long Island
150 Motor Parkway - Suite 306
Hauppauge, NY 11788
(Fax) 631-435-1893