What are the differences between HTIW and asbestos? Is it true that ASW/RCF is as dangerous as asbestos?

- Jun 11, 2018-

It is a mistake to believe that HTIW and asbestos are similar in their potential to cause damage to human health. There are several important reasons for this:

  • Asbestos splits longitudinally, producing long very thin fibres, whereas HTIW breaks (snaps) transversely, producing shorter thick fibres that are more readily removed from the lung.

  • Asbestos fibres are much more likely to become airborne than thicker, heavier HTIW fibres.

  • Asbestos – especially amphibole asbestos – is considerably more biopersistent in the lung than HTIW.

Exposed asbestos workers are at high risk of pulmonary fibrosis (asbestosis), lung cancer and mesothelioma. ASW/RCF workers so far show no increased risk whatever for these conditions.