As a result of the extensive use of asbestos as a building material, asbestos is frequently found within many existing workplaces.
Have a look at the HSE's step-by-step guide which will take you through the process
What are the duties relating to Asbestos?
Under the 'Control of Asbestos Regulations 2006', those person(s) in control of buildings have a duty to manage the asbestos that is contained within it. These Regulations specifically require those who are in control of the premises to:
take reasonable steps to determine the location of materials likely to contain asbestos;
presume materials to contain asbestos, unless there are good reasons not to do so;
make and maintain a written record of the location of the ACMs and and presumed ACMs;
assess and monitor the condition of ACMs and presumed ACMs;
assess the risk of exposure from ACMs and presumed ACMs and prepare a written plan of the actions and measures necessary to manage the risk (e.g. the ‘management plan’); and
take steps to see that these actions are carried out.
You must notify the Council of any licensed asbestos removal work by completing a HSE ASB5 Notification Form.
Do I need to have a survey?
No - the duty to manage is not a duty to survey, however you may find a proper asbestos survey by a competent person useful in discharging your duty.
Who should I contact to carry out a survey?
The council does not provide a service for inspecting or surveying for Asbestos.
All surveys must be carried out by a competent person and in accordance with the HSE Guidance HSG264: Asbestos; the survey guide. To carry out an asbestos survey for someone else the surveyor must have a qualification issued by the British Occupational Hygiene Society (Proficiency Module p402).
An accreditation scheme for organisations who undertake asbestos surveys has been developed by the 'United Kingdom Accreditation Service' (UKAS). Contact the UKAS Information Desk for accreditation and technical enquiries as follows:
You will need to check that the individual/company have the appropriate accreditation to undertake surveys and to take samples.
Who will deal with asbestos issues in the Council?
The Food and Occupational Safety team deal with all issues that arise in occupied commercial premises, as per the details below.
The Environmental Protection Team address asbestos issues for all commercial and industrial premises where no one is working, i.e. abandoned & derelict premises. Environmental Protection will locate an owner and then serve an abatement notice on the owner to get any material containing asbestos cleaned up and disposed of correctly.
The Environmental Safety and Health Team can investigate asbestos issues for commercial and industrial premises, including abandoned and derelict premises. Where asbestos is considered to pose a risk to public health, Environmental Safety and Health will seek ownership details and then may serve an abatement notice on the owner to require any material containing asbestos cleaned up and disposed of correctly. Where asbestos issues are not considered to pose a risk to public health, the matter may be assessed in terms of workplace health and safety in premises where health and safety matters are enforced by the local authority. Where health and safety matters are not enforced by the local authority, this would need to be referred to the Health and Safety Executive.
If you live in a council housing and are concerned, you should report it to council housing.
Or if you rent or own your own home, you should contact private sector housing.