1.1 Why is asbestos dangerous?
– Asbestos still kills around 5000 workers each year, this is more than the number of people killed on the road.
– Around 20 tradesmen die each week as a result of past exposure.
– However, asbestos is not just a problem of the past. It can be present today in any building built or refurbished before the year 2000.
1.2 There are three types of asbestos we check when surveying:
– Chrysotile – Known as white asbestos. The fibres are soft and fine, which can resist high temperatures. Chrysotile was banned in the UK in 1999.
– Amosite – Known as brown asbestos. The fibres are spikey which have good tensile strength. Used mainly between the 1920s and the late 60’s. Amosite was banned in the UK in 1986.
– Crocidolite – Known as blue asbestos. The fibres are like needles and are the strongest. Crocidolite has been used since the 1880’s and was finally banned in 1985.
1.3 When materials that contain asbestos are disturbed or damaged, fibres are released into the air. When these fibres are inhaled they can cause serious diseases. These diseases will not affect you immediately – they often take a long time to develop, but once diagnosed, it is often too late to do anything. This is why it is important that protective measures are taken now.
1.4 Where can you find asbestos?
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, for example:
– Loose asbestos in ceiling or floor cavity.
– Sprayed coatings on ceilings, walls and beams/columns.
– Asbestos insulating board.
– Floortiles, textiles and composites.
– Textured coatings.
– Asbestos cement products.
– Roofing felt.
– Rope seals and gaskets.
2. Quantum Compliance’s Approach
2.1 Quantum Compliance is accredited by UKAS to completed Asbestos Management Surveys.
2.2 If the site was constructed prior to 2000, you should arrange for an Asbestos Management Survey of all areas by a competent person. This survey should also cover any other areas where you are the dutyholder, i.e. where you are responsible for maintenance.
2.3 Any remedial action necessary in relation to encapsulation and/or removal should be implemented within the specified timescales and interim control measures implemented where necessary.
2.4 Where refurbishment or demolition work is planned, then the relevant parts of the building should have a Refurbishment or Demolition Survey completed by a competent person. The relevant survey report should be given to each contractor or in the case of notifiable projects under CDM (Construction Design and Management Regulations 2015), to the Principal Contractor and Principal Designer for inclusion in the health and safety file.
3. Report Format
3.1 All of our asbestos surveys and asbestos testing is carried out following the guidelines set out in Asbestos: The Survey Guide HSG264.3.2
3.2 The specific format of the Asbestos Management Survey Report, Refurbishment or Demolition Survey Report would include the following;
Section 1. Executive Summary
Section 2. Introduction and Background
Section 3. Survey Procedure
Section 4. Areas Surveyed / Not Surveyed
Section 5. Analysis of Samples
Section 6. Assessment of Material and Risk of Asbestos Fibre Release
Section 7. Conclusions
Section 8. Caveat
Section 9. Appendices
A – Survey Records
B – Asbestos Register
C – Building Plans
D – Certificate(s) of Analysis
Quantum Compliance provides the following specialist compliance services: