When you have read and understood this chapter, you should be able to answer
the following learning objectives:
. Describe the Navys asbestos control program.
. Describe the Navys sight conservation program.
l Describe the Navys hearing conservation
. Describe the Navys respiratory protection
. Describe the Navys heat stress program.
. Describe the Navys hazardous material and
hazardous waste program.
This chapter will give you broad coverage of the
material described in the learning objectives. If you have
definite responsibilities in any of the programs
discussed, refer to those subjects in the Navy
Occupational Safety and Health (NAVOSH) Program
Manual, OPNAVINST 5100. 19B.
THE ASBESTOS CONTROL PROGRAM
Asbestos is a fibrous mineral that can be used to
produce a fireproof material with high tensile strength,
good heat and electrical insulating properties, and
moderate to good chemical resistance. Because of these
characteristics, asbestos is normally found aboard older
ships in insulation (lagging) for high temperature
machinery, boilers, and piping and in certain deck tiles
and decorative paneling. Most new ships commissioned
through 1976 contain some asbestos thermal insulation.
Since 1974, most thermal insulation has been replaced
with nonasbestos material.
Asbestos is a known health hazard if it is absorbed
into the body. Asbestos materials used aboard ship are
normally not health hazards when they are in good
condition, secured in place, and unlikely to be disturbed.
Bound asbestos materials, such as gaskets, floor
coverings, and cements are not normally health hazards
unless you punch, grind, machine, or sand them, or when
the material deteriorates. Our primary concern is
asbestos that may become airborne through disturbance,
damage, or friability. (Friable asbestos is loosely bound
and the fibers may easily be crumbled or pulverized.)
Exposure to asbestos causes no known acute,
immediate effectsmost effects appear years after
exposure. This can cause carelessness, so be sure your
people understand the long-term effects. There is only
one way to prevent the possibility of asbestos-related
illness, and that is to avoid exposure. The Navy has
instituted a program to control the use of asbestos and
to replace any removed asbestos with a nonasbestos
substitute wherever possible.
The feasibility of evaluating the risk of specific
exposures varies from ship to ship. Some tenders and
repair ships have devices to collect samples of airborne
asbestos and personnel trained to use those devices and
interpret the results. Those ships should apply the
measurement procedures outlined in this chapter. Other
ships should assume that all thermal insulation contains
asbestos unless they know otherwise. They should then
adopt the protective measures that are required where
asbestos materials are worked.
The guidance in this chapter applies to afloat units.
All ships should limit the removal of asbestos to
emergency or operational readiness repairs to piping or
equipment. Replace insulation with nonasbestos
materials. Handle all other asbestos work according to
the Current Ships Maintenance Plan (CSMP), which
calls for work to be done by a trained and equipped
personnel at an intermediate maintenance activity
(IMA) during repair availabilities.
An industrial hygienist is usually the best person to
understand and deal with asbestos hazards. Few ships
have industrial hygienists, but some will have a
corpsman trained to work with asbestos hazards. The