Asbestos survey

Is an asbestos survey required and if so, what type of survey?

What age is the property?

Buildings built after 2000, then Asbetsos Containing Materials (ACMs) should not have been used, as use of any asbestos banned in 1999.

 

Is there any existing previous asbestos information or register?

Check for previous reports, building registers or asbetsos remediation documents present. If reports are present, check any limitations and areas not accessed.

 

Are there comprehensive, reliable as-built records (health and safety files if post-2004)?

Record of inclusion or omission of ACMs in drawings and/or contract documents should be checked.

 

Is the building redundant and/or unoccupied?

Risk may be managed by preventing uncontrolled access, but emergency arrangements need to be considered. Building use can change, this is not a permanent solution and future use and planned change should be considered.

 

Have ACM’s been removed previously?

Care must be taken when assessing if asbetsos is present, regulations and guidance for asbetsos removal were not always as stringent as they are now. Ensure previous remediation works were carried out properly.  For example – where sprayed asbestos, protection of steelwork, has been used, there is the risk that overspray may remain in crevices, voids or even within the linings or fabric of the building.

 

Which asbetsos survey do I need?

To comply with the ‘Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012’, ensure that the correct asbestos survey is carried out to identify and enable management of the risk of any ACMs that are present. Asbetsos surveys are designed to locate and detail the extent and condition of any ACMs within a pre-2000 building. They will also outline any required remedial actions such as asbestos removal or encapsulation if required. The two types are;

Management Surveys

As a rule, asbestos management surveys and re-inspection surveys are non-intrusive, and are aimed at buildings under normal occupancy with minor maintenance works and access all accessible parts of a building.

Refurbishment / Demolition Surveys

Asbestos refurbishment surveys and/or asbestos demolition surveys need to be conducted prior to any work being undertaken to alter fabric, fixtures, fittings, or any major structural changes including demolition. These inspections are more intrusive and often include things like breaking through walls to access behind cladding, uprooting floor coverings and fixed ceilings.

 

We hope our brief guide above assists you as to whether an asbetsos survey is required or not. Next week we question the efficacy of asbetsos testing yourself with a home testing kit VS an appointment of asbetsos consultant.

Asbestos

Two prosecutions by the HSE highlight what asbestos refurbishment and asbetsos demolition surveys do and why they are needed.

The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012

To comply with the ‘Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012’, you must make sure that the correct asbestos survey is carried out to identify and manage the risk of any ACMs that are present within a building. Therefore, if you own or manage buildings build pre 2000, you need an asbestos survey. Following the survey an asbestos register is to be created, a suitable risk assessment to be carried out and a written plan to manage the risks identified by the materials present.

Intrusive asbestos surveys

Asbestos Refurbishment Surveys or Asbestos Demolition Surveys are required where the premises, or part of it, need upgrading, refurbishment, or demolition.

A Refurbishment / Demolition Survey aims to ensure that:

  • Nobody will be harmed by work on Asbestos containing materials in the premises or equipment
  • Such work will be done by the right contractor in the right way

The asbestos refurbishment and demolition surveys are fully intrusive, it involves destructive inspection to the fabric of the building to locate and identify all ACM’s before any structural work begins at a stated location or on stated equipment at the premises.

Case 1

Newnham College Cambridge was fined for failings that exposed employees and subcontractors to asbestos during refurbishment of a flat owned by the college.

Failings identified that employees and subcontractors were exposed to asbestos during refurbishment of a flat owned by the college.

Failings identified were.

  • No asbestos refurbishment survey was carried out prior to insulation debris being found
  • One employee did not have asbestos awareness training
  • One employee who contaminated his gloves and clothing with loose asbestos debris, spread asbestos from his clothing outside the flat

An investigation by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) found that there was inadequate planning and management of the refurbishment work.

On January 15, the College pleaded guilty to breaching Regulations 5 and 16 of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 and was fined £12,000 and ordered to pay costs of £4,450.28.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Sandra Dias said: “Asbestos surveys need to be carried out prior to refurbishment works which disturbs the fabric of a building. Asbestos is still present in hidden locations in buildings and needs to be located before work starts that could potentially expose individuals.”

Case 2

Labform Ltd, a specialist laboratory design and installation company, was fined following the exposure to asbestos of workers, pupils, and teachers.

Failings identified were.

  • Subcontractors disturbed asbestos as they were removing a wall and channelling the floor.
  • Asbestos exposure to asbestos of workers, pupils, and teachers occurred
  • No asbestos survey either refurbishment or demolition asbestos survey was undertaken.

The company was fined £22,400 plus £11,700 costs for four breaches of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012.

A HSE inspector commented “exposure to asbestos was a serious and well-known health risk, so it was essential that duty-holders took suitable and sufficient measures to prevent the disturbance, spread and exposure to asbestos.

Failing to take action to identify asbestos while planning work, and to ensure that any contractors who may disturb asbestos are aware of the location and type of asbestos present, and not taking appropriate measures to protect the health of others, is totally inexcusable”.

 

The two recent cases show satisfactory asbetsos refurbishment and asbetsos demolition surveys are not being undertaken.

Asbestos refurbishment and demolition surveys provide accurate information on the location, amount, and condition of asbestos-containing materials within a property and are a legal requirement prior to starting refurbishment or demolition works.

If you or someone you know are planning on undertaking a refurbishment or demolition project get them to contact Summit Environmental.

 

Summit Environmental – your partner in asbestos compliance. 

 [email protected] – 0203 874 9530

Asbestos management and compliance in schools.

Is your school compliant with the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012?

A large number of schools and other public buildings contain asbestos – often in the fabric of the building. Its presence alone should not cause concern, provided it is managed properly. Many schools, built before 2000, will contain asbestos, of the 29,000 schools in Britain, more than 75% contain asbestos. School buildings may contain asbestos if any part of them was built before 2000.

Nurseries, schools, colleges and universities are not obliged to tell you if their premises contain asbestos. Do you know about the buildings your children, friends and families attend contains asbestos?

Asbestos what is the risk?

Asbestos that is in good condition and unlikely to be damaged or disturbed is not a significant risk to health. The Department for Education referred nearly 700 schools in England to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) as they did not provide evidence that they were managing asbestos in line with regulatory requirements.

The most likely way asbestos containing materials (ACM’s) will create a risk in schools is when they are disturbed or damaged through maintenance, repair or construction activities. Disturbance could also occur by an accidental football or a thrown bag if asbestos is not managed satisfactorily within high footfall areas.

 

What to look out for?

Asbestos-containing materials within schools (ACM’s) include:

  • Asbestos lagging, thermal insulation on pipes and boilers
  • Sprayed asbestos used for thermal insulation to ceilings and void spaces
  • Asbestos-insulating board (AIB) used for fire protection, thermal insulation, wall and ceiling tiles and partitioning in classrooms
  • Floor coverings such as lino’s and floor tiles
  • Cement materials used for sheeting, roofing and guttering
  • Textured coating and finishes to walls and ceilings
  • Woven materials to electrics

 

Who is at risk?

School caretakers are a particular group at risk due to the nature of their work, eg drilling and fixing. Other contractors may be at risk while undertaking maintenance or installation work, while at the school. If asbestos is disturbed during such work, there is a risk that fibres will be released and create risk to others in the school. This fibre release increases the risk of exposure to asbetsos of anyone using the school buildings such as staff and pupils.

This means that teachers and pupils are unlikely to be at risk in the course of their normal activities in a school where the asbestos has been identified and a safe management strategy is in place.

 

Who is responsible for asbestos management in schools?

Anyone who has responsibility for the maintenance and/or repair of non-domestic premises, including schools, is a ‘dutyholder’ as defined in Regulation 4 of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012.

For community schools, community special schools, voluntary-controlled schools, maintained nursery schools and pupil referral units, this could be the local authority. For academies, free schools, voluntary-aided and foundation schools, it will be the school governors. For independent schools, it may be the proprietor, governors or trustees.

 

The dutyholder’s responsibilities?

The duty holder must assess and manage the risks from asbestos to employees and others that may be likely to disturb asbetsos. They must also ensure that anyone who is likely to work on, or disturb, asbestos is provided with information about its location and condition. This is enabled by;

  • The ‘management survey’ this will identify if any asbestos-containing materials are present within the school.
  • Assess the risks associated with ACM’s in your school. Assess the material type, condition, location and likelihood of fibre release.
  • Devise an Asbestos Management Plan (AMP’s). The asbestos management plan identifies the risks posed by the asbestos present in the property and sets out procedures to control them. The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 states that “all duty holders with known or presumed asbestos within their premises must have an effective written asbestos management plan in place.
  • Make sure staff, visitors and contractors know the risks and precautions they need to take.
  • Keep the management of asbestos in your school under review. This will include a review of the management plan, re-inspection surveys, training for staff, remediation of high risk items.

 

What can you do and how can Summit Environmental help?

Summit Environmental can provide:

  • Independent assessments
  • Asbestos management and refurbishment surveys
  • Asbestos re-inspection surveys
  • Asbestos exposure investigations
  • Asbestos management plans
  • Asbestos remediation management
  • Consultancy and advice

 

If you have concerns regarding asbestos in schools or other premises where asbestos may be present, Contact us at [email protected] for more advice or information.

 

Recent articles include

https://www.theguardian.com/education/2019/jul/04/700-english-schools-reported-over-asbestos-safety-concerns

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2019/07/03/asbestos-found-nearly-half-local-authority-run-primary-schools/

https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/asbestos-danger-5000-primary-schools-17325850

Summit Environmental become CHAS Accredited

Summit Environmental recently applied for CHAS accreditation, today we received our certificate!!

For those not in construction, what exactly is CHAS accreditation?

CHAS Accreditation

CHAS stands for the:

  • Contractors
  • Health and Safety
  • Assessment
  • Scheme

What does CHAS do?

The purpose of CHAS is to help both buyers and suppliers in the assessment of health and safety competence.

How do you get CHAS?

CHAS undertook a rigorous vetting process in which our health and safety procedures and our track record for safe practice were examined.

Our Commitment?

Our CHAS accreditation confirms our commitment to Heath and safety by completing annual assessments showing we are maintaining the high levels of health and safety management required and affirms our dedication towards maintaining good health and safety standards.

For more information on our accreditation, asbestos or hazardous material testing, consultancy or risk management contact us at

http://www.summitenvironmental.co.uk

[email protected]

 

 

Compliance with The Control of Asbestos Regulations (CAR, 2012)

The Control of Asbestos Regulations (CAR, 2012)

The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 covers work with asbestos, and licensing of asbestos-removal activities. Regulation 4 contains an explicit duty on the owners and occupiers of non-domestic premises, who have maintenance and repair responsibilities, to assess and manage the risks from the presence of asbestos.

The ‘duty to manage asbestos’ requirements of regulation 4 of CAR 2012 do not normally apply to domestic premises. However, the requirements do apply to common parts of premises, including housing developments and blocks of flats. Examples of common parts would include foyers, corridors, and lifts and lift shafts, staircases, boiler houses, vertical risers, gardens, yards and outhouses.

What is the Duty?

The duty requires you to manage the risk from asbestos by:
 Finding out if there is asbestos in the premises (or assessing if ACMs are liable to be present and making a presumption that materials contain asbestos, unless you have strong evidence that they do not), its location and what condition it is in;
 Making and keeping an up-to-date record of the location and condition of the ACMs or presumed ACMs in your premises;
 Assessing the risk from the material;
 Preparing a plan that sets out in detail how you are going to manage the risk from this material;
 Taking the steps needed to put your plan into action;
 Reviewing and monitoring your plan and the arrangements made to put it in place; and
 Setting up a system for providing information on the location and condition of the material to anyone who is liable to work on or disturb it.

How do dutyholder’s comply?

There are four essential steps:
 Find out whether the premises contain asbestos, and, if so, where it is and what condition it is in. If in doubt, materials must be presumed to contain asbestos
 Assess the risk from asbestos present in the premises
 Make a plan to manage that risk and act on it
 Provide this information to other employers (eg building contractors) who are likely to disturb any asbestos present, so that they can put in place appropriate control while the work is being done.

Summit Environmental….your partner in asbestos compliance!

We can guide you through your asbestos management process and help you comply with your legal obligations.
 Asbestos surveys – identify asbestos in your premises by way of completing surveys; management, refurbishment or demolition.
 Asbestos management plans – develop and implement and effective plan to ensure you are managing your asbestos effectively.
 Asbestos re-inspections – following identification of asbestos materials, we complete annual re-inspections and monitor and report on the asbestos previously identified.
 Training – asbestos awareness, management training and CPD sessions
 Asbestos remediation scoping, tendering and remediation management – Once identified, we will advise you on the best way to deal with asbestos in the most efficient, safe and cost-effective way.

What is ‘asbestos abatement’ and ‘asbestos remediation’?

What is ‘asbestos abatement’ and ‘asbestos remediation’?

Some Asbestos Containing Materials (ACM’s) are more vulnerable to damage and therefore more likely to release fibres than others. ACM’s which are in good condition, sealed and/or repaired are unlikely to be disturbed and can be left in situ. When ACM’s are disturbed, they are likely to release airborne fibres which can then pose a risk to health.

The term ‘asbestos abatement’ is used to refer to procedures that are used to control fibre release from asbestos containing materials in a building, or to remove the materials entirely. Remediation can include removal, encapsulation by way of over boarding or encasement and finally repair.
‘Asbestos abatement’ and ‘asbestos remediation’ is a specialist service and should only be undertaken by competent contractors.

How do you know the company you are appointing is competent?

Damaged asbestos or a legacy issue?

Many removal jobs in the past were not carried out to a high specification and quantities of asbestos debris may remain in an area supposedly now free of asbestos. A number of buildings are also still requiring surveys, once identified asbestos management and often remediation is required.

Summit Environmental and Asbestos Remediation Management

Managing an asbestos repair or removal contract can be a time-consuming and complex business. We work for our clients and ensure we provide appropriate guidance to our client. Our advice and consultancy services can be based around;

• Enabling and Planning – Writing asbestos removal specifications and tender documentation, completing tenders and appointment of approved Licensed Asbestos Removal Contractors (LARC’s). This can also include audits and vetting of method statements and plans of work.

• During – Full site management and supervision of contractors, with provision of UKAS accredited asbestos fibre air monitoring.

• On completion – We can update asbestos registers following works and complete site audits and investigations.

Contact us at Summit Environmental if you have asbestos that needs management, remediation management during removal or any of our bespoke services above.

Asbestos survey

What is asbestos surveying?

What is asbestos surveying?
The purpose of an asbestos survey is to help manage asbestos in the duty holder’s premises. The survey has to provide sufficient information for an asbestos register and plan to be prepared, a suitable risk assessment to be carried out and a written plan to manage the risks to be produced.

What is an asbestos survey?
An asbestos survey is a visual inspection of a property or premises for asbestos, samples may need to be taken to identify is materials contain asbestos.

What are the types of asbestos survey?
There are two main types of asbestos survey to identify asbestos containing materials (ACM’s) within properties;

Management Survey
The purpose of an asbestos management survey is to manage ACM’s during the normal occupation and use of premises.
A Management Survey aims to ensure that:
• Nobody is harmed by the continuing presence of ACM in the premises or equipment
• That the ACM’s remain in good condition
• That nobody disturbs it accidentally
The Survey must locate ACM’s that could be damaged or disturbed by normal activities, by foreseeable maintenance, or by installing new equipment. It involves minor intrusion and minor asbestos disturbance to make a Materials Assessment.

Refurbishment / Demolition Survey
The Refurbishment / Demolition Surveys are required where the premises, or part of it, need upgrading, refurbishment or demolition.
A Refurbishment / demolition Survey aims to ensure that:
• Nobody will be harmed by work on ACM’s in the premises or equipment
• Such work will be done by the right contractor in the right way
The asbestos survey must locate and identify all ACM’s before any structural work begins at a stated location or on stated equipment at the premises. It involves destructive inspection and asbestos disturbance.

Do you know if you have asbestos in your premises? Contact Summit Environmental to find out.

asbestos
sampling

What is asbestos and why is it dangerous?

WHAT IS ASBESTOS?

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral and was widely used in the construction of buildings. Asbestos was included in a huge number of construction products, for a very diverse range of uses, often centred around fireproofing or insulation purposes.

Is asbestos not a historical problem?

Asbestos is still widely present today. Potentially any building built or refurbished before the year 2000, may contain Asbestos Containing Materials (ACM’s). Do you know if your building contains Asbestos Containing Materials?

WHY IS ASBESTOS DANGEROUS?

When asbestos containing materials are damaged or deteriorate with age, they can release fibres into the air. The shape and size of the fibres released enables them to penetrate deep into the lungs. Once they reach the lungs they can lead to asbestos related diseases, such as;

  • Mesothelioma
  • Asbestosis
  • Pleural thickening
  • Asbestos related lung cancer

WHAT TO DO?

Having as asbestos survey completed can identify if asbestos is present within your premises. Identification, by way of sampling and assessment of materials within a building that may contain asbestos, can reduce the risk of damage occurring to materials that may present. Once identified, any materials identified that contain asbestos should be recorded and monitored on an asbestos register. This greatly reduces the risk of a potential exposure to asbestos by occupants of the premises.

Asbestos identification by way of asbestos survey

HOW CAN SUMMIT ENVIRONMENTAL HELP?

Summit Environmental Limited can complete asbestos management surveys, asbestos refurbishment surveys and asbestos demolition surveys to locate materials that may contain asbestos in your premises.