Health and Safety
“The duty to manage asbestos in non-domestic properties”.
The Main thrust of the new legislation will place an explicit duty on all workplace property owners / managers to take all reasonable steps to protect their staff, as well as others, by locating and recording the presence of asbestos containing materials, and implementing a management system which adequately addresses the risks.
The removal of asbestos is a risky operation because, by its very nature, there is disturbance of the material, exposure to asbestos fibres and for the spread of contamination. A high degree of control is therefore required.
Consequently, removal should only be carried out when necessary and not simply because asbestos containing materials are present.
Examples where removal may be necessary include:
- Before the demolition of a building;
- Before maintenance or refurbishment work which may disturb asbestos containing materials;
- Where asbestos containing materials are vulnerable to damage by the normal day to day activities in the building;
- Where a change in the use of the building may make asbestos containing materials more prone to damage.
- Asbestos containing materials should therefore remain in place and be included in a building management system unless they are likely to be disturbed or damaged.