Asbestos was once a common material in commercial construction, used for its fire-resistant properties and insulation benefits. However, we now know that asbestos exposure can lead to serious health problems, including mesothelioma, lung cancer, and asbestosis.
The good news is that there are now regulations in place to protect workers and the public from asbestos exposure. If you own or manage a commercial property, it's important to be aware of the requirements for dealing with asbestos.
Here's a quick overview of what you need to know
If your property was built before 1980, it's likely that asbestos was used somewhere in the construction. Even if you're not sure if there's asbestos present, it's always best to assume that there is and take appropriate steps to protect yourself and your employees.
There are strict regulations around the removal of asbestos. If you need to remove asbestos from your property, you must use a licensed asbestos removalist. The removal process must be carried out in accordance with strict guidelines to ensure everyone's safety.
If you don't need to remove asbestos from your property, you still need to take steps to manage it. This includes regular inspections, maintaining the asbestos in good condition, and having a plan in place in case of emergency.
Asbestos is a serious health hazard, but it's also a legal liability. If someone is injured or becomes ill as a result of exposure to asbestos on your property, you could be liable for damages. This is why it's so important to take responsibility for managing asbestos on your property.
If you're not sure where to start, there are plenty of resources available to help you. The first step is to get in touch with your local authority to find out what regulations apply in your area.
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that has been used in a variety of commercial products for its resistance to heat, fire, and chemicals. Asbestos fibers are also extremely durable and resistant to breakage, making them ideal for use in insulation and other building materials.
While the use of asbestos in commercial products has declined in recent years due to health concerns, it is still present in many older buildings. If you own or manage a commercial property built before the 1980s, there is a good chance that it contains asbestos.
As a property owner or manager, you are responsible for ensuring that your building is safe for occupants and workers. This includes making sure that any asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) are properly managed and maintained.
There are a few key things you need to know about commercial asbestos requirements and regulations:
Asbestos must be disclosed: If you know or suspect that your property contains asbestos, you are required to disclose this information to potential buyers or tenants. This disclosure must be made in writing, and it must include details about the location of the asbestos and what type of ACM it is.
Asbestos must be tested: If you plan to renovate or demolish your property, you must have an asbestos survey conducted prior to starting work. This survey will identify any ACMs that need to be removed or repaired.
Asbestos must be removed by a licensed contractor: If asbestos is found on your property, it must be removed by a licensed asbestos abatement contractor. This contractor will follow specific protocols to safely remove the asbestos and dispose of it properly.
Asbestos must be disposed of properly: Once asbestos has been removed from your property, it must be disposed of at an approved landfill site.
Asbestos waste must be clearly labeled and properly packaged to ensure that it is not spread to other areas.
As a property owner or manager, it is your responsibility to ensure that your building is in compliance with all commercial asbestos requirements and regulations. By taking these steps, you can help protect the health of your occupants and workers, and avoid potential penalties.