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Asbestos can be found in any industrial or residential building built or refurbished before the year 2000. It is in many of the common materials used in the building trade that you may come across during your work.

Our surveyors will never leave asbestos containing materials (ACM) in a dangerous state that has potential to expose people. ACMs that have been sampled by the surveyor will be sealed at the point of sampling. Any ACMs which are found in poor condition/ surface treatment with potential to expose, our surveyor will recommend to the duty holder to restrict access to that area in question following sample analysis results/ asbestos abatement & removal works as advised in the recommendation section of the report.

Reassurance, Leak, Clearance, Personal Air monitoring is a requirement during/ after asbestos removal works. Air monitoring may also be required to determine the extent of contamination, Background Air monitoring to establish the fibre concentration of the ambient environment, Personal Air monitoring to assess effectiveness of control measures, and Reassurance Air monitoring to give confidence to staff.

The asbestos risk register is a key component of the required plan on how you will manage any asbestos found, or presumed to be, in your buildings. This management plan must contain current information about the presence and condition of any asbestos in the building. The asbestos risk register will therefore need to be updated on a regular basis (at least once a year). To do this you should make:

  • regular inspections to check the current condition of asbestos materials
  • deletions to the register when any asbestos is removed
  • additions to the register when new areas are surveyed and asbestos is located
  • changes to the register (at any time asbestos-containing materials are found to have deteriorated)

The risk register can be kept as a paper or electronic record and it is very important that this is kept up to date and easily accessible. Paper copies may be easier to pass on to visiting maintenance workers, who will need them to know the location and condition of any asbestos before they start work. Electronic copies are easier to update and are probably better suited for people responsible for large numbers of properties or bigger premises.

All work with: Spray coating, thermal Insulation, loose insulation, insulating boards, or severely degraded/ damaged cement/textured coating/ textiles or bitumen products will require 14 day notification to the HSE before any work can start.

People who believe they may have been exposed to asbestos are understandably anxious and concerned about the possible effects on their health. Many cases of inadvertent, short-term exposure to asbestos will most likely have led to minimal exposure to fibres, with little likelihood of any long-term ill health effects.

Although the type of asbestos involved and duration of exposure may be known, there may be little reliable information about the level of exposure. These are all important factors in determining the level of risk – the more fibres that are released by an asbestos-containing material, and the longer the work activity lasts, the greater the cumulative exposure to asbestos fibres and, therefore, an increased risk of ill health effects.

Some work activities are more likely to create a significant concentration of asbestos fibres in the air, and therefore, add to the risk if suitable precautions are not in place; for example:

Use of power tools (to drill, cut etc.) on most ACMs work that leads to physical disturbance (knocking, breaking, smashing) of an ACM that should only be handled by a licensed contractor e.g. sprayed coating, lagging, asbestos insulating board (AIB)manually cutting or drilling AIB work involving aggressive physical disturbance of asbestos cement e.g. breaking or smashing

If you are concerned about possible exposure to asbestos from work activities, you are advised to consult your GP and ask for a note to be made in your personal record about possible exposure, including date(s), duration, type of asbestos and likely exposure levels (if known). In some circumstances, your GP may refer you to a specialist in respiratory medicine.

Yes you can check for asbestos yourself, but only if you have the P402 qualification (or equivalent), 6 months recent/ relevant experience in that specific building type. The samples must be analysed in a UKAS accredited laboratory. You will also need to provide, risk assessment scoring for each room/ item to form a management plan with an asbestos register, detailed plans showing AMC extent and location of sample points.

Recommendations will still need to be actioned within the timeframe set out by each risk assessment score and AMCs which remain need regular re-inspection/ remediation to comply with the law.

There are two types of companies that will offer asbestos surveying services; independent asbestos consultancies like ourselves, who are not affiliated to removal companies, and asbestos removal companies.

The easiest and most reliable way is to use a trusted and independent Asbestos consultancy and avoid liability of doing the work yourself and/or potential speculation from asbestos removal contractors.

The duty to manage asbestos is a legal requirement under the control of asbestos regulations 2012 (regulation 4). It applies to the owners and occupiers of commercial or industrial premises who have responsibility for maintenance and repair activities. In addition to these responsibilities they also have a duty to assess the presence and condition of any asbestos-containing materials. If asbestos is present then it must be managed appropriately. This duty also applies to the shared parts of some domestic premises.

Yes, you will need to manage the asbestos containing materials within any building built before the year 2000.

Managing agents are responsible for the maintenance within the buildings they manage and therefore have a legal obligation as the duty-holder. (Regulation 4a of CAR 2012)

Managing agents should not allow the public or workers to enter these properties before the asbestos containing materials have been properly identified and the risks assessed and reduced as far as reasonably practical.

Completing an asbestos management survey to each building will provide you with all the information you need to manage the risk of each asbestos-containing item, within each property. This will provide you with evidence of a safe environment that allows normal workers and the public to enter the property safely.

You will also need to ensure that any hidden asbestos-containing items, which would not have been identified by a management survey, have been suitably identified and the recommendations actioned before any refurbishment or demolition work is allowed to start. This will create a safe working environment before you allow the workers to refurbish or demolish within any property you manage.

This will enable you to manage the risk and therefore comply with the control of asbestos regulations 2012 (failure to comply can result in a prohibition of the business, large fines and custodial sentencing for offenders).

This will also help negate future legal action from persons who may have been exposed to asbestos while working in your property by reducing any exposure as far as reasonably practical.

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