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Lead and Asbestos Dangers Exposed During Hurricane Irma and Harvey Recovery Efforts

EMSL Analytical provides testing services, sampling supplies and easy-to-use test kits to identify exposure hazards that may be present following storm damage.

Cinnaminson, NJ – WEBWIRE

This past Tuesday, officials from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced that initial estimates indicate that 25% of homes in the Florida Keys have been destroyed and 65% have major damage caused by Hurricane Irma. The destruction from Irma has not been limited to just Florida, as significant property damage has occurred all the way north in parts of Georgia and South Carolina. Include the destruction from Hurricane Harvey several weeks ago and damage estimates from both storms are well over $100 billion. 

Countless numbers of homes, businesses, schools and other institutions have been damaged by wind, rain, tidal surges and flooding. In some areas, the power has still not been restored, making cleanup efforts that much more challenging.

When property owners and remediation professionals do begin removing damaged and soaked building materials, furnishings and personal belongings, new safety concerns need to be addressed. This is due to the fact that lead-based paints and asbestos-containing materials are present in many damaged properties. Exposure to these materials during cleanup, demolition and rebuilding efforts could put people at risk.

As the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reports, “Many homes built before 1978 have lead-based paint.” During rebuilding efforts, lead-based paints can be aerosolized if the proper safety precautions are not taken. Asbestos may also be present in many of these properties and exposure to asbestos fibers is known to cause mesothelioma, lung cancer and asbestosis.

“Many people with water damaged properties have mold on their minds, but lead and asbestos are also serious exposure risks in residential, commercial and institutional properties,” said Joe Frasca, Senior Vice President of Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “At EMSL, we are committed to helping hurricane victims recover safely by offering quick and affordable environmental testing services. We also provide all of the sampling supplies needed and test kits for mold, lead, asbestos as well as a wide range of other exposure hazards associated with cleanup and rebuilding efforts following a natural disaster.” 

To learn more about indoor environmental quality testing of hurricane damaged properties or other indoor air quality, environmental, health and safety services, please visit, call (800) 220-3675 or email . For access to indoor environmental quality test kits, visit  

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.

EMSL Analytical, Inc. is one of the leading testing laboratories with 40 locations throughout the United States and Canada. EMSL is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider specializing in fast laboratory results for mold, bacteria, Legionella, USP 797, pathogens, asbestos, lead, soot, char & ash from fires, VOC’s, odors, radon, formaldehyde, indoor air quality, microbiology, environmental, industrial hygiene, radiological, food, beverage & consumer products and material testing services for the identification of unknown substances. EMSL services both professionals and the general public. EMSL maintains an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies including, but not limited to A2LA, AIHA LAP, LLC. (AIHA EMLAP, AIHA IHLAP, AIHA ELLAP), NVLAP, CDC ELITE, CPSC, CA ELAP, NY ELAP, TX DOH, NJDEP and multiple other state accrediting agencies. Please visit our website at for a complete listing of accreditations.  In addition, EMSL carries a wide range of Sampling Equipment and Investigative Products for environmental professionals.

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