Who needs it? And what are the requirements?

IMO every contractor who works on buildings built before 1985 needs it. I know, the rules say buildings 1980 and earlier, but asbestos has been found in buildings built after 1980.  So what kind of training do you need? Well, that depends.

If you work on buildings built before 1985 you will need at least Class IV training. The definition (by OSHA) of Class IV activity is “maintenance and custodial activities during which employees contact but do not disturb asbestos containing materials and activities to clean up dust, waste and debris resulting from Class I, II and III activities“. I believe this includes all construction activities where there might be asbestos present.  Even if the plan is to stop-work, and call the abatement company.

Class III definition is, “– means repair and maintenance operations, where asbestos containing material, including thermal system insulation and surfacing asbestos containing material is likely to be disturbed“.  I can think of many instances where contractors touch and disturb asbestos including, HVAC (Mechanical), Plumbers, Electricians and others.

Classes I and II are strictly abatement activities and, for our purposes, we will not define, or get into.

Comparing Class III and Class IV, we see the real difference is if there is: 1. contact or 2. disturbance.

  • Class III – Contact and LIKELY to be disturbed
  • Class IV – Contact but DO NOT disturb

Depending on the construction activities  on the structure- will determine which class you’re in…and will determine what type of training you will need.

Class III Training- 16 hours in length, and includes hands on use. Also, as a side- you must also register your project with EPA, depending on the size and type of activity.

Class IV Training- 2 hours in length, and must cover certain assigned topics.