In recent days I posted an article on Green Lodging News that discussed the importance of paying attention to potential asbestos issues when renovating a hotel. Click here for that article. Asbestos is a leading cause of mesothelioma cancer and should not be taken lightly—especially when the safety of your employees and your guests is at stake.
Coincidentally, just before the asbestos article was sent to me, I came across a story in The Salem (Mass.) News about problems with asbestos at the Holiday Inn Hotel and Suites Boston-Peabody in Peabody, Mass. The state of Massachusetts' Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) discovered asbestos at the site while construction crews were renovating the property. Because of the discovery, the DEP disallowed employees and guests from working or staying at the 183-room hotel. Guests staying at the hotel during the closure had to be relocated—not exactly the kind of PR you dream about. According to the article, hotel management had not sought or obtained a permit to do any kind of asbestos abatement.
For any hotel built or remodeled before or in the 1980s, assume the presence of asbestos. You will save yourself the types of problems encountered by the owners of the Holiday Inn mentioned above.