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New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services
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Site Identification

Asbestos cannot be positively identified without microscopic analysis by a qualified laboratory technician. However, the trained naked eye can spot materials on the surface of, or in soil that have a high probability of being asbestos.

Generally speaking, asbestos manufacturing waste buried in the Nashua / Hudson area exists in the following forms:

The waste comes in a variety of colors, including gray, white, black, green, and red. After being in the soil for many years, it has a tendency to blend with its surroundings and may be hard to distinguish from the natural soils. This is particularly true of "baghouse" waste, which is a fine, dust like material.

However, the naked eye, trained by experience, can often detect the presence of asbestos manufacturing waste by also studying the physical characteristics of a site, including the vegetation and terrain. Based on experience, sites with the following features may contain buried asbestos waste:

  • Topographic features indicating that the site has been filled;
  • Debris, typically in the form of pellets, spheres and/or plate waste, located on or near the surface of the ground, or protruding from steep banks or extending into surface waters and wetlands;
  • Scant vegetation and/or vegetation consisting of moss, sumac trees, poison ivy, and/or pricker bushes;
  • Hummocks along a forest floor, often in a grid like or symmetrical pattern; and
  • Refuse/solid waste items, such as glass bottles, cans and other household items.

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Known Sites / One Stop Data Retrieval




NH Department of Environmental Services | 29 Hazen Drive | PO Box 95 | Concord, NH 03302-0095
(603) 271-3503 | TDD Access: Relay NH 1-800-735-2964 | Hours: M-F, 8am-4pm

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