Asbestos Encapsulating Roofs


Asbestos Encapsulating Roofs


Asbestos Roofs pose significant risks in the food industry, and it is crucial to address these dangers to ensure a safe working environment. While the removal of asbestos may seem like the obvious solution, it can be complicated, expensive, and result in extensive downtime. However, Asbestos Encapsulating Roofs within a seamless, protective coating has proven to be a safe and cost-effective method of asbestos management. In this guide, we will explore encapsulating asbestos roofs in the food industry using liquid rubber coatings, ensuring compliance with regulations and promoting a hazard-free work environment.

Understanding the Dangers of Asbestos Roofing in the Food Industry

Asbestos, a group of naturally occurring minerals, was widely used in construction due to its heat resistance and durability. However, prolonged exposure to asbestos fibres can lead to serious health issues, including lung diseases and cancer. Asbestos roofs, commonly found in older buildings in the food industry, pose a significant risk as they can release asbestos fibres if disturbed or damaged. Factors such as hail storms, cyclones, or environmental degradation can contribute to the deterioration of asbestos cement sheeting, increasing the likelihood of fibre release.


Asbestos Ceiling Dangers
Asbestos Ceiling Dangers


The Benefits of Liquid Rubber Coatings for Asbestos Encapsulating Roofs

Liquid rubber coatings offer a range of benefits when it comes to encapsulating asbestos roofs in the food industry. These coatings provide a protective layer that repairs any damaged asbestos, seals exposed edges and extends the material’s useful life. By encapsulating asbestos, the coating reduces the release of fibres through general degradation, creating a non-hazardous work environment. Additionally, liquid rubber coatings protect against accidental knocks and scrapes, improving the overall appearance of the material.


Encapsulating Asbestos Roofs
Encapsulating Asbestos Roofs


The Process of Asbestos Encapsulating Roofs

Step 1: Assessment and Inspection

Before initiating the encapsulation process, a thorough assessment and inspection of the asbestos roof should be conducted. This assessment helps identify any damaged or deteriorated areas that require immediate attention. It is essential to engage the services of an approved asbestos inspection authority to ensure accurate evaluation and compliance with regulatory standards.

Step 2: Preparation of the Work Area

Creating a safe and controlled work area is crucial for effective encapsulation. The following steps should be taken:

  1. Segregation of the Work Area: Close doors and use warning signs or barrier tape to restrict entry and prevent unauthorized personnel from entering the work area. The distance for segregation should be determined through a comprehensive risk assessment.
  2. Covering of Floor Surfaces: Use plastic sheeting secured with duct tape to cover any floor surfaces within the work area that could potentially become contaminated.
  3. Lighting and Ventilation: Ensure adequate lighting and ventilation to facilitate the encapsulation process and maintain a safe working environment.
  4. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE): Provide suitable PPE, including respiratory protective equipment (RPE), disposable coveralls, gloves, and eye protection, to all personnel involved in the encapsulation process.


Liquid Rubber Encapsulating Roofs
Liquid Rubber Encapsulating Roofs


Step 3: Primer and Bonding Agent Application

Before applying the liquid rubber coating, a primer or bonding agent should be used to ensure proper adhesion and penetration into the asbestos cement sheeting. The primer sealer is specifically designed to bind unstable elements to the substrate, providing an excellent adhesive layer for the subsequent coating.

Step 4: Application of Liquid Rubber Coating for Asbestos Encapsulating

Once the primer has been applied and allowed to dry, the liquid rubber coating can be applied to the asbestos roof surface. It is recommended to use an airless sprayer at low pressure for optimal results. The coating acts as a protective layer, sealing and Asbestos E

Encapsulating the asbestos, while also providing UV resistance and enhancing the overall durability of the roof.

Step 5: Post-Asbestos Encapsulating Procedures

After the liquid rubber coating has been applied, several post-encapsulation procedures should be followed to ensure a thorough and safe encapsulation process:

  1. Decontamination of Equipment: Use damp rags to clean all equipment used during the Asbestos encapsulating process. This helps minimize the risk of asbestos fibre release.
  2. Cleaning of the Work Area: Use damp rags or an asbestos vacuum cleaner, where appropriate, to clean the encapsulated area and remove any residual dust or debris.
  3. Disposal of Waste: Place all debris, used rags, and other waste in labelled asbestos waste bags or containers. Prior to removal from the work area, wet-wipe the external surfaces of the waste bags or containers to remove any adhering dust.
  4. Personal Decontamination: Follow a designated personal decontamination procedure, which may involve cleaning disposable coveralls and respirators while still wearing them. Dispose of contaminated coveralls and respirators in labelled asbestos waste bags or containers.


Encapsulating Asbestos Roofs with Liquid rubber
Encapsulating Asbestos Roofs with Liquid Rubber


Benefits of Asbestos Encapsulation in the Food Industry

Encapsulating asbestos roofs in the food industry offers several advantages over complete removal:

  1. Minimal Disruption: Unlike asbestos removal, encapsulation allows businesses to continue operations without significant downtime.
  2. Cost-Effective: Encapsulation is often a more affordable option than complete removal and roof replacement.
  3. Compliance with Regulations: Proper encapsulation ensures compliance with occupational health and safety regulations regarding asbestos management.
  4. Enhanced Durability: Liquid rubber coatings structurally improve the entire roof, extending its lifespan and protecting against environmental factors.
  5. Environmental Friendliness: Liquid rubber coatings used for encapsulation are VOC-free and environmentally friendly, reducing the impact on the surrounding ecosystem.


Encapsulating asbestos roofs in the food industry using liquid rubber coatings provides a safe and cost-effective method of managing asbestos hazards. By following a systematic process that includes assessment, preparation, primer application, liquid rubber coating, and post-encapsulation procedures, businesses can ensure compliance with regulations and maintain a hazard-free work environment. With the benefits of minimal disruption, cost-effectiveness, enhanced durability, and environmental friendliness, encapsulation proves to be a viable solution for the food industry’s asbestos management needs.

Note: Asbestos encapsulation should only be performed by qualified professionals with expertise in asbestos handling and in compliance with local regulations and guidelines.