VERMICULITE SAMPLING INSTRUCTIONS

General Information

Claimants may submit a sample of vermiculite attic insulation for testing to determine if it qualifies for reimbursement/compensation under the ZAI Claims program.

A printable version of these instructions can be found here.

This procedure DOES NOT test for asbestos content.


ALL CLAIMANTS MUST SUBMIT THE FOLLOWING when submitting a sample for testing:

1.      Claim Form

2.      Chain of Custody Form

Without these documents, the ZAI Trust cannot test your sample.

The Chain of Custody Form must be printed out from the ‘Forms’ tab, completed, signed, and shipped with the sample to ZAI Trust.

The Claim Form can be completed online (click on the ‘Online Claim Form’ tab), or a paper form can be printed from the ‘Forms’ tab, completed, signed, and included with the Chain of Custody Form when the sample is shipped to ZAI Trust.


There are two options for collecting a sample:

1.     You may hire a Certified Asbestos Professional (or licensed or certified Home Inspector) to collect the sample for you.

2.     You may collect the vermiculite sample yourself.  (Taking the sample yourself will expedite the processing time).  


Hiring a Certified Professional

The cost to have a certified professional collect the sample, as recommended by the EPA, may be included in your claim for reimbursement. This applies to the sampling of vermiculite only, and does not include the cost of sampling other suspected asbestos containing materials. 

Note: Both the claimant and the contractor, if one is used, must sign the Chain of Custody documentation and declaration for truthfulness.  By submitting a claim for reimbursement you are authorizing the Trust to contact the abatement professional regarding your claim.


Taking the Sample Yourself

READ AND FOLLOW THESE SAMPLING PROCEDURES CAREFULLY, AND REVIEW THE IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER AT THE END. PLEASE CALL THE TRUST IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS.  CLAIMANT ASSUMES ALL RISK AND LIABILITY ASSOCIATED WITH SAMPLE COLLECTION.

General Precautions

  • Assess whether the floor in the attic will support a person's weight.  It is the claimant's responsibility to ensure that appropriate precautions are taken to ensure safety.  
  • The EPA advises that if you have to go into your attic that you limit the number of trips and shorten the length of the trips because significant disturbance of Libby vermiculite can release fibers in the air. A careful collection of a few samples of vermiculite should not require much time or disturbances.
  • It is advisable to wear disposable gloves and asbestos respiratory protection when collecting the sample and dispose of the gloves when you are done, especially if you intend to make multiple visits to the attic or disturb the vermiculite more than would be required to collect a few samples.

Sampling Procedure

  1. Materials Needed:

a. Clean container for collecting the sample (e.g. Ziploc-style bag or small (~3oz) jar with screw top lid, see APPENDIX A below)

b.  Additional Ziploc style bag to put the sealed container in for shipping

c. Felt tip marker

d. Disposable scoop

e. Disposable gloves

f. Disposable asbestos respiratory protection

g. Clean damp cloth(s)/rag(s)

h. Wet mop

i. Leak-proof heavy plastic bag for disposing of used materials

2. Before entering the attic, use a felt-tip marker to label the Ziploc style bag(s) or top of the jar with the property address and date.

3.  Enter the attic, being careful not to disturb the vermiculite. Carefully scoop the insulation into the container, taking small samples of the insulation from different areas of the attic, if possible. To ensure that the sample is representative, scoop to the full depth of the vermiculite rather than just scooping it from the top. You should fill the jar or bag nearly full. Avoid collecting non-vermiculite substances (e.g. wood or particles) if possible.

4. Before leaving the attic, wipe the outside of the jar or sampling bag with a clean damp cloth, then place the jar/bag in a separate seal-able Ziploc style plastic bag.

5. After coming down from the attic, also wipe the separate seal-able Ziploc style plastic bag (containing the sampling container) with a clean damp cloth.

6. Upon completion, clean the entire area near the attic access point thoroughly with wet mops, wet rags, sponges, or HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) vacuum cleaners to ensure that vermiculite is not tracked into your living space. A regular vacuum cleaner should never be used. Dispose of all cleaning materials, disposable equipment, and gloves in the sealed, leak-proof, heavy-duty plastic bag. 

7. Complete the Chain of Custody Form and the Claim Form, and ship the filled sample container to the Trust. Make sure the container is labeled with the property address and the date, the Chain of Custody Form is included in the shipment, and the Claim Form has either been submitted online or is included in the shipment with the Chain of Custody Form. The address is:

ZAI Trust

317 Wingo Way, Suite 303

Mount Pleasant, SC 29464

8. There is no deadline for filing the claim, so your sample does not need to be sent overnight or any sort of priority. Regular mail is fine. 

9. The Trust does not notify claimants when a sample is received, so you are welcome to use carrier provided tracking (e.g. USPS, UPS, FedEx, etc.) to verify receipt of your sample.

10. Once the Trust has received your sample, it will be sent to a lab for testing. When the results are returned to the Trust, an email will be sent to claimants advising of their results.

11. We are unable to accommodate requests to expedite the testing of samples.

12. Please note that if your vermiculite sample results are non-consistent with the Zonolite Attic Insulation product, the Trust is willing to test up to two more samples at no cost to you.

If you intend to remove the vermiculite before your sample results are received or analyzed by the Trust, you should consider collecting two more samples before the removal. 


NOT ALL VERMICULITE IS THE ZONOLITE BRAND, AND YOU ARE NOT ELIGIBLE FOR REIMBURSEMENT UNLESS YOUR VERMICULITE IS SHOWN TO BE THE ZONOLITE BRAND.


 

SAMPLE ANALYSIS

The Trust will have the samples analyzed using US EPA methods for Solid Waste (SW846). The analysis is designed to be a feasible, reliable and economical test to distinguish ZAI from non-ZAI and does not test for asbestos content. (See Disclaimer). If the analysis is unable to distinguish ZAI from non-ZAI, additional product identification information will be required.

 

DISCLAIMER
The analysis conducted by the Trust DOES NOT determine whether the sample contains asbestos. No representations are being made as to the asbestos content in your sample. Rather, the testing protocol is designed to be a simple, cost effective method to help you meet the evidentiary requirements OF THE TRUST.

The ZAI Trust disclaims any liability or risk resulting from the use of the work practices and recommendations discussed in these instructions.  It is the claimant's responsibility to ensure that these recommendations comply with all applicable federal and local laws and regulations.  


 

APPENDIX A