Kershaw Contracting Services Talk Top Tips For Asbestos Management

July 14 2017

Stephen Summerfield, MD for Kershaw Contracting Services, talks asbestos management, and the simple things you can do to avoid falling foul of the law.

Cambridge based Kershaw Contracting Services are experts in the management and removal of asbestos. With 30 years’ experience under their belt, they know a thing or two about asbestos.  

Stephen Summerfield Managing Director for Kershaw Contracting Services said “Over the past few years there have been some high-profile court cases where organisations have been fined six figured sums for failing to manage their asbestos correctly.” he continued “We have provided the following top tips to help address some of the common queries relating to asbestos and its safe management”

1)  Establish if the building likely to contain asbestos

Asbestos was widely used as a construction material, and could often be found in roofing, insulation, fire protection, flooring, gutters and pipes. It wasn’t until 1999 that the true dangers of asbestos were realised, and it was banned from use in the UK. Therefore, any building built prior to 2000 is likely to contain asbestos materials.

 2)  Assess if it is dangerous

When left untouched and undamaged asbestos is generally safe, significant health risks arise when the material the asbestos is contained within is cut, broken or allowed to deteriorate in some way. It is then that the harmful fibres can be released into the air, which could result in serious health problems. Consequently, it is important that surveys are regularly undertaken to ensure that nothing has changed regarding its condition.

3) Understand your legal obligations

If you own or are responsible for a commercial, non-domestic property, you are required by law to identify and safely manage and asbestos within your building.

4) Talk to the professionals

If you identify asbestos and it is in good condition, and not at risk of being disturbed or damaged you may choose to leave it untouched. In some instances, you may prefer to get the asbestos encapsulated.

However, if it needs removing you need to speak with a HSE licenced asbestos removal service who can undertake any remedial works required with the minimum amount of disruption.

5) Keep your management plan up-to-date

Even if you have had asbestos services in the past, as part of your management plan, you have a legal duty to regularly inspect any asbestos within your building. This can be managed internally or can be outsourced to a provider who will provide you with an annual inspection to ensure your building remains in a safe condition.