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Oregon Asbestos Regulations

No one wants to think about potential toxins lurking in the walls around them. But if you’re an Oregonian planning a renovation or demolition, or you work in the construction industry, you’ll need to consider the hazards involved, including the risk of asbestos exposure. Whether you’re knocking down a single wall or tearing down a whole office building, you should become familiar with Oregon’s asbestos regulations to ensure you’re following the law and protecting yourself and those around you.

The Dangers of Asbestos

Asbestos is a mineral that was used for centuries due to its strong, insulating, and fire-proofing characteristics. In the 20th century, it was used heavily in the construction and commercial products industries. While intact, undisturbed, sealed asbestos isn’t considered dangerous, inhaling asbestos fibers that are released during renovations, demolition, or other activities can lead to devastating illnesses, such as mesothelioma (cancer of the chest and abdominal linings), asbestosis (irreversible lung scarring similar to emphysema), and lung cancer.

As the health risks of asbestos became more apparent in the 1960s and 1970s, the states and federal government began regulating it more stringently, with many uses banned by 1990. However, since many items and components such as popcorn ceilings and wall insulation still contain asbestos, there are many regulations concerning asbestos emissions standards and the removal process.

Federal and Oregon Asbestos Laws

Both federal and Oregon statutes and regulations seek to reduce asbestos exposure, especially through the training and licensing of asbestos contractors. In Oregon, the amount of training and licensing required depends on the levels of responsibility of the contractor or worker and the size of the project. Additionally, buildings must be inspected for asbestos prior to any demolition or renovation, and all asbestos-containing material must be properly disposed of at an approved facility. Also, while you’re exempt from many regulations if you’re performing asbestos abatement on your own house, it’s still important to follow proper containment and disposal protocol to protect yourself, your family, and the general public.

The following chart provides key sections of Oregon’s asbestos regulations, as well as relevant regulatory agencies.

  • Statutes
  • Oregon Statutes, §468A.700 et seq. (asbestos abatement projects; training; licensing; penalties)
  • Oregon Statutes, §468A.755 (exemption for abatement in private residences)
  • EPA, 40 CFR Part 61, Subpart M (national emission standards and renovation/demolition requirements for asbestos)
  • OSHA, §1926.1101; §1910.1001 (federal safety and health regulations regarding asbestos in the workplace)

Asbestos Regulatory Agencies



Asbestos Removal Regulations

  • Persons performing an asbestos abatement project must be certified (340-248-0110).
  • Owner-occupied single, private residences are exempted from many regulation requirements where the owner is performing the renovation and asbestos abatement (340-248-0250(2)(a)).
  • Owners or operators of a facility to be demolished or renovated must first have the facility inspected for asbestos by an accredited inspector (340-248-0270(1)).
  • Owners, operators, or contractors must notify the Department of Environmental Quality at least 10 days before beginning any friable asbestos abatement project (340-248-0260).
  • Asbestos disposal requirements (340-248-0280)
  • Asbestos exposure in the workplace (437-002)

Note: State regulations are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Oregon Asbestos Regulations: Related Resources

Get Legal Help with Your Asbestos Claim in Oregon

Considering the severity of the health hazards involved with asbestos exposure, it's no wonder there are so many state and federal regulations surrounding its use and containment. If you think you've been exposed to asbestos, or you've received an asbestos-related diagnoses, you may be entitled to compensation from those responsible. Speak with a local personal injury attorney today to find out how Oregon asbestos regulations apply to your unique situation.

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