Asbestos in Debris after a Wildfire

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that has been added into thousands of various types of building materials to add fire resistance, strength, and durability. Any building may contain asbestos, even it if was recently constructed.

Asbestos in Ash and Debris

When building materials burn in a wildfire, asbestos fibers likely remain in the ash. Therefore, the ash and remaining building debris need to be treated as asbestos-containing waste material unless a certified Colorado asbestos building inspector samples the debris and ash and can determine that the debris is asbestos-free.

Ash/debris from a building and remaining building materials must be treated as asbestos-containing waste materials (“ACWM”). If a homeowner wishes to prove that these materials are not asbestos-containing, an inspection of the premises and sampling must take place.

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A number of local, state, and federal regulations cover the handling and disposal of debris potentially contaminated with asbestos.



Boulder County Public Health
Contact: Susan Martino or 303-441-1564

Debris Removal

Darla Arians
Resource Conservation Division

Colorado Department of Public Health
and Environment

Asbestos Unit 303-692-3100
(To report an improper clean-up incident, call 303-692-3150)