What is an Asbestos Worker

What Does an Asbestos Worker Do

Hazardous materials (hazmat) removal workers identify and dispose of asbestos, lead, radioactive waste, and other hazardous materials. They also neutralize and clean up materials that are flammable, corrosive, or toxic.

How To Become an Asbestos Worker

Hazardous materials (hazmat) removal workers receive on-the-job training. They must complete up to 40 hours of training in accordance with Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) standards.

There are no formal education requirements beyond a high school diploma.

Some hazmat removal workers must be licensed. Positions in nuclear facilities require candidates to be U.S. citizens, pass a security background investigation, and pass drug and alcohol abuse screening.

Education

Hazmat removal workers typically need a high school diploma. Although not required, associate’s degree programs related to radiation protection may help candidates seeking positions in nuclear facilities.

Training

Hazmat removal workers receive training on the job. Training generally includes a combination of classroom instruction and fieldwork. In the classroom, they learn safety procedures and the proper use of personal protective equipment. Onsite, they learn about equipment and chemicals, and are supervised by an experienced worker.

As part of this training, workers must complete up to 40 hours of training in accordance with OSHA standards. The length of training depends on the type of hazardous material that workers handle. The training covers health hazards, personal protective equipment and clothing, site safety, recognizing and identifying hazards, and decontamination.

To work with a specific hazardous material, workers must complete training requirements and work requirements set by state or federal agencies on handling that material.

Workers who treat asbestos or lead, the most common contaminants, must complete an employer-sponsored training program that covers technical and safety subjects outlined by OSHA.

Decommissioning and decontamination workers at nuclear facilities receive extensive training. In addition to completing the OSHA-required hazardous waste removal training, workers must take courses on nuclear materials and radiation safety as mandated by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. These courses may take up to 3 months to complete, although most are not taken consecutively.

Organizations and companies provide training programs that are approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Department of Energy, and other regulatory agencies.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

In addition to completing the training required by OSHA, some states mandate permits or licenses, particularly for asbestos and lead removal. Workers who transport hazardous materials may need a state or federal permit.

License requirements vary by state, but candidates typically must meet the following criteria:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Complete training mandated by a state or federal agency
  • Pass a written exam

To maintain licensure, workers must take continuing education courses each year. For more information, check with the state’s licensing agency.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Although previous work experience is not required, some employers prefer candidates with experience in the construction trades, such as construction laborers and helpers.

In addition, some employers at nuclear facilities prefer to hire workers with at least 2 years of related work experience. Experience in nuclear operations in the U.S. Navy as a nuclear technician or power plant operator or experience working as a janitor at a nuclear facility may be helpful.

Important Qualities

Decisionmaking skills. Hazmat removal workers identify materials in a spill or leak and choose the proper method for cleaning up.

Detail oriented. Hazmat removal workers must follow safety procedures and keep records of their work. For example, workers must track the amount and type of waste disposed, equipment or chemicals used, and number of containers stored.

Math skills. Workers must be able to perform basic mathematical conversions and calculations when mixing solutions that neutralize contaminants.

Mechanical skills. Hazmat removal workers may operate heavy equipment to clean contaminated sites.

Physical stamina. Workers may have to stand and scrub equipment or surfaces for hours at a time to remove toxic materials.

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Average Salary
$54,771
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
11%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
30,635
Job Openings
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Average Salary for an Asbestos Worker

Asbestos Workers in America make an average salary of $54,771 per year or $26 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $118,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $25,000 per year.
Average Salary
$54,771
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Choose From 10+ Customizable Asbestos Worker Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Asbestos Worker templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Asbestos Worker resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Asbestos Worker Demographics

Asbestos Worker Gender Statistics

male

91.3 %

female

8.7 %

Asbestos Worker Ethnicity Statistics

White

56.0 %

Hispanic or Latino

19.6 %

Black or African American

15.9 %

Asbestos Worker Foreign Languages Spoken Statistics

Spanish

90.0 %

Polish

5.0 %

French

5.0 %
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Asbestos Worker Education

Asbestos Worker Majors

15.1 %

Asbestos Worker Degrees

High School Diploma

54.4 %

Diploma

14.8 %

Associate

13.2 %
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OSHA Workplace Safety (General Industry 6 Hr Class)
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Top Skills For an Asbestos Worker

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 23.0% of Asbestos Workers listed Asbestos on their resume, but soft skills such as Detail oriented and Physical strength are important as well.

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Top Asbestos Worker Employers

Most Common Employers For Asbestos Worker

RankCompanyZippia ScoreAverage Asbestos Worker SalaryAverage Salary
1$139,147
2$103,608
3$89,840
4$66,589
5$66,374
6$66,363