Asbestos Surveying – When is it Necessary?
Dealing with something as volatile as asbestos is best left to the professionals. Asbestos isn’t always harmful, but in certain circumstances it can be deadly. It’s vital that you take responsibility for your building, home or workplace and learn everything you can to protect yourself, your friends, colleagues and loved ones.
Often there’s no reason for action, but it all starts with getting an asbestos surveyor to give you that invaluable safety and peace of mind. But when is it necessary to hire a surveyor, and how do you know if you need one or not? Here’s a short guide to provide you with all the essential information you need to make your next move.
Know Your Enemy
To understand whether or not it’s necessary for you to hire a surveyor, it might be helpful to understand a little bit of background. Too many workplaces have had workmen, builders, electricians and plumbers suffer from the dangers of damaged asbestos because of negligence. The gravity of the situation requires no complacency, and immediate action.
The majority of people have heard of asbestos, and know that it poses a threat to the physical health of those around us. Exposure and inhalation of the fibres can, in most cases, be fatal. When asbestos is in good condition though, it doesn’t pose any problems. For around 30 years, from the mid 1900′s, asbestos was used in buildings for fireproofing and insulating, and it was very effective as a material. It is now banned for use because of the realised dangers, but it is still present in buildings that are in regular use today.
Worth the Risk?
If your building was constructed after the year 2000 then you needn’t worry, the laws and legislation in place would have prevented any of the harmful material being used in the build.
Asbestos surveying is important as asbestos is a very dangerous substance.
Finding out when your building was started or finished will help you to determine whether or not you need a survey. If you discover that your building needs one based solely on when it was built, you’ll need an ‘Asbestos management survey’. The survey is completed at least once a year to monitor the condition of any asbestos found. As we’ve previously stated, there is no danger if the material is untouched, unbroken and in perfect condition. It is only when damaged that the dangerous fibres are released. Since buildings in regular use may have its occupants, or even tradesmen or builders in contact with areas that asbestos could be used in, it’s important to regularly check to make sure that nobody is at risk.
How do you spot the material though? You may already have seen it, walked on it, beside it and under it without even knowing. Since asbestos is used in so many different ways, it’s hard to know the risk without hiring a professional surveyor. The expert will be able to identify any source of the material, in the form of ceiling tiles, floor tiles, fire prevention equipment and drainage.
Asbestos surveying is a good task to do if you think you may have an asbestos problem.
The Law Says Always
While it is essential and wise for every eligible building to have an annual survey, it isn’t as much of a choice as you might think. Since lives are at stake – and there is nothing more important than our safety and wellbeing – it’s actually now a legal requirement to have a survey. Keeping an asbestos register and updating it regularly via a survey, and taking any action they deem needed is not just necessary, it’s against the law not to.
While it might be a cost you hadn’t anticipated, there is absolutely nothing that exceeds the cost of our health. Taking asbestos surveying seriously is always necessary, and taking any action needed can and will save lives.
Armed with a little more knowledge than before, it’s time you know exactly where you stand with asbestos. While the seriousness of the risk is always heavily emphasised, you can have peace of mind if you let the experts do their jobs, and treat or dispose of any threats. Let professional teams monitor your safety so you don’t have to, and ensure a great working and living environment, not just for those around you, but for yourself too!
- Asbestosis and Mesothelioma | eLocal(elocallawyers.com)