Asbestos Management Plan
The use of asbestos in building construction was common practice until its prohibition in 1999. Any building constructed or renovated before the year 2000 therefore could potentially contain asbestos based materials. Asbestos is extremely dangerous if inhaled which can cause life threatening diseases. Asbestos fibres can be released into the atmosphere if disturbed and it is vital therefore to know where in a building asbestos exists in order to prevent accidental disturbance. To prevent building users and contractors coming into contact with asbestos surveys to discover it’s presence are undertaken and a management plan put in place to ensure it is safely managed.
What is an Asbestos Management Plan?
An Asbestos Management Plan is compiled following the discovery of asbestos based materials in a building. In order to comply with Regulation 4 of The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 the Duty Holder of the building must ensure that a management plan is in place to effectively and safely manage any asbestos that exists in the building.
The management plan should detail the extent of any asbestos present, the type of asbestos , it’s condition and what measures are to be taken to ensure building occupants, maintenance staff and contractors do not become exposed. The plan should also detail the names of persons responsible for implementing and reviewing the plan and what is to be done in the event of an emergency.
The Plan should be made available to all staff and outside contractors who have the potential of accidentally coming into contact with the asbestos.
It is the Duty Holder’s responsibility to ensure their building, with ACMs, has a comprehensive Asbestos Management Plan available to all staff, contractors and building users. Asbestos Management Plans must be regularly reviewed and updated to reflect the vulnerability and condition of any ACM’s ,(Asbestos Containing Materials,) present.
Why is an Asbestos Management Plan Needed?
If asbestos is present in a building there is a legal requirement to comply with Regulation 4, (Duty to Manage), of The Control of Asbestos Regulations. Not only is it mandatory to comply with these regulations an Asbestos Management Plan is vital for the safety of building occupiers and maintenance staff.
Asbestos doesn’t always need to be removed and can remain in situ provided it can be safely managed however, where ACMs are present, anyone who may come into contact with them must be informed and aware. Similarly, ACMs must be monitored and re-surveyed at least annually to check that it’s condition has not deteriorated and become more hazardous.
It goes without saying that asbestos is dangerous and potentially harmful when disturbed. Illnesses such as Mesothelioma, lung cancer, and Asbestosis can be caused by exposure to asbestos fibres. These illnesses are caused by inhalation of microscopic fibres released into the air when ACMs are disturbed. The illnesses may not appear until many years after exposure. The HSE estimate that asbestos is currently responsible for the deaths of approximately 5,000 people annually in the United Kingdom.
It is essential therefore that ACMs are identified, monitored, and it’s presence made aware to users and contractors of a building within an Asbestos Management Plan.
Who is the Duty Holder?
Usually the building owner or person designated to deal with building matters is the Duty Holder responsible for creating and maintaining safe working conditions for users of the building.
Their role is to find out where ACMs are, how much there is, and the condition of the asbestos, using trained contractors to safely undertake the survey. From the initial survey risk to occupants can be assessed and documented in the Asbestos Management Plan. Once the Plan is created it is the Duty Holder’s responsibility to ensure it is implemented and reviewed on a regular basis.
Is an Asbestos Management Plan a Legal Requirement?
If ACMs are found then an Asbestos Management Plan is required in order to comply with Regulation 4 of Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012. Failure to comply with the HSE regulations can result in fines of up to £20,000 and/or imprisonment for up to 12 months.
Find out more about the HSE Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 with this helpful guide.
What does an Asbestos Management Plan Contain?
Once ACMs are discovered and it becomes necessary to compile a Management Plan there are certain issues that the Plan must address. From documenting location and condition to implementing Asbestos Awareness Training an Asbestos Management Plan should be a comprehensive document covering the following elements :-
- An outline of who is responsible for the management of ACMs in the building (Duty Holder)
- Detailed reports of the location, amount and condition of the ACMs
- Directions for safety measures
- Strategies for how ACMs will be managed and monitored with future surveys
- Schedules of work which may disturb ACMs
- Plans for Asbestos Awareness Training
- Emergency Procedures in case anything goes wrong
If you are unsure what to include in your Asbestos Management Plan, consult the experts. Casa Environmental Services are experienced asbestos service providers, from surveying to management. Find out more about how we can assist you with your Asbestos Management Plan.
Get Started with Casa Environmental Services
Whether you want an Asbestos Survey or Asbestos Awareness Training, Casa Environmental Services can help you. Our specialists have many years’ experience in surveying, management, and analytics, providing you with comprehensive services. We can help you every step of the way; from skilfully finding and carefully testing ACMs, to sourcing a reliable and safe removal.
Get in contact with our specialist team today.