There is a real possibility that our contract partners may come across asbestos in your commercial premises, however the risk of exposure is very low, as long as the guidance in this document is followed. In short, working with asbestos is not allowed at all, this includes our contract partners who work on our behalf.
What is Asbestos?
As asbestos has unique re-resistance properties, it has been identified in over 3000 different products, most extensively in buildings. Most buildings built between 1950 and 1980 are likely to contain some asbestos. Asbestos in the form of asbestos cement can be found in buildings constructed or refurbished between 1980 and before 1999. Owing to the widespread use of the material, asbestos is the biggest cause of occupational deaths in the UK and will continue to be so for many years to come.
The legal duty to control asbestos is on the company or person that looks after the building or site (customer). They must supply the relevant information on any asbestos or suspected asbestos present in the building. In addition they must tell us the controls they have put in place to reduce / eliminate the risk of contamination through a risk assessment. This should reduce the likelihood of finding any asbestos and give prior opportunity for those undertaking the works to identify the appropriate measures to reduce contact with or disturbing any asbestos. However, this only reduces the likelihood of coming across known asbestos.
What Documentation is Required?
The quickest way for us to find out if asbestos is present prior to any work starting is through an asbestos survey, which will result in an asbestos register being issued. The person who controls the building or site is legally obliged to have one, unless the building/site was constructed after the year 2000 when asbestos was banned.
What Do I need to do?
If the building was built pre-2000, please ensure the asbestos register is available on-site during the site survey. If the building was built post-2000 please ensure the on-site contact is aware of this and informs the engineer who attends the site survey.