All asbestos is a class 1 – carcinogen (cancer forming) materialAsbestos is the name for several silicate minerals which are highly fibrous with separable long thin fibres. The word asbestos is derived from a Greek adjective meaning inextinguishable. The Greeks termed asbestos the miracle mineral because of its soft and pliant properties, as well as its ability to withstand heat. Asbestos fibres are strong and flexible, having a tensile strength far greater than steel, yet flexible enough to be spun and woven. Due to asbestos being resistant to fire and heat, it is a poor conductor of electricity and has excellent thermal and acoustic properties and certain types being highly resistant to acids and alkalis. Asbestos has been widely used for many applications making it useful for a number of industrial and commercial uses.