Asbestos Emergency Response

If you have experienced an emergency spill or release of asbestos containing material, do the following (Emergency Waiver Procedure):


1. Label material(s) that needs to be tested for asbestos content


2. Contact supervisor or EHS directly at (617) 452-3477


3. Request an emergency asbestos survey from the EHS asbestos program

  • Contact EHS asbestos program staff
    • Mendes, Barry – (617) 253-1665
    • McAnney, Brian – (617) 253-0165
  • OR contact EHS main number (617) 452-3477 8 am to 5 pm, M-F
  • OR contact Operations (617) 253-1500 after hours Operations will EHS on call

4. If asbestos content of material is suspected but unknown, contact EHS at (617) 452-3477 to request testing. Results are provided to the supervisor


5. If asbestos content of material is known to be positive, supervisor or building owner must contact MA Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to request an emergency waiver:

  • Dial (978) 694-3200 and ask for the DEP asbestos division
  • Tell the DEP inspector who you are, where you are from, and that you would like to request an emergency waiver
  • Provide the physical location (street address) of the incident
  • Provide name of abatement contractor that will perform work
  • Provide the approximate square/linear footage of material to be abated
  • If requested, provide reason for request (i.e.: valve leaking, must repair to supply heat/cooling/water to buildings)
  • DEP inspector should issue an emergency waiver number
  • Write waiver number down and contact the EHS asbestos program with number

6. If asbestos content of material is known to be positive, a state licensed asbestos abatement contractor is contacted by the supervisor or affiliate.  Be sure to:

  • Provide the abatement contractor with DEP waiver number
  • The contractor will use that number to acquire a waiver number from the Department of Labor Standards (DLS)

7. Abatement must take place immediately


8. Notify the EHS asbestos program with a start time and inform the contractor to contact the EHS asbestos program to discuss schedule and abatement procedure



Events arise at MIT that require emergency demolition/renovation procedures that include the need to test for and/or manage any asbestos found in the affected environment.


Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection defines "emergency demolition/renovation" as any operation that was not planned but results from a sudden unexpected event which requires the demolition/renovation of a structurally sound or unsound facility or facility component.  This includes non-routine failures of equipment or structural components: pipe, duct, boiler, tank, turbine, furnace, etc.  Asbestos Containing Material (ACM) is defined as any material containing more than 1% of asbestos.