Asbestos describes six different types of natural silicate minerals which were once mined and used in a variety of different building projects. Manufacturers and builders would mine and use asbestos because the minerals offered resistance to fire, solid tensile strength, resistance to chemical and electrical damage and excellent sound absorption. Asbestos was often used for electrical insulation, building insulation and hotplate wiring, until it became clear that prolonged inhalation of the asbestos fibers would cause the potential for serious illness including asbestosis, mesothelioma and malignant lung cancer. Now that this information has come to light, many jurisdictions have heavily restricted or outright banned the use of asbestos in building and electrical projects.
Today, more projects involved the removal of asbestos from homes and commercial buildings rather than its installation. When any technician is doing professional work and finds asbestos fibers on the property, the best course of action is to bring in an asbestos removal specialist who can eliminate the threat so that the professional can complete the work without risk of exposure. In some situations it potentially more risky to remove the asbestos than to wrap or seal the asbestos material to entomb the risk. The greatest risk is generally considered to be any action that damages or powders the material and makes the fine asbestos particles airborne. This make inhalation much easier. Consult an expert before you take any action.