What Is An Asbestos Survey?28th February 2017
If you’re carrying out any structural work on your property, or are planning to have a building demolished, an asbestos survey will identify any asbestos-containing materials and allow you to plan for their safe removal.
Many commercial buildings throughout the UK still contain asbestos in varying amounts, and the failure to account for this during construction work is one of the main causes of asbestos exposure. In this article, we’re looking at asbestos surveys, including what they are, why they are important and how to go about getting one.
An asbestos survey is designed to help you identify, track and manage the amount of asbestos in your business premises before construction, demolition or refurbishment. Asbestos exposure often occurs when asbestos-containing materials are disturbed without knowledge. Because asbestos needs to handled delicately at all times, not carrying out an asbestos survey means putting people at risk of uncontrolled and widespread asbestos exposure.
An asbestos survey doesn’t only locate and identify asbestos in your property, it also allows you to assess the risk involved with the asbestos, and form a detailed plan of action to ensure its safe removal and disposal.
What happens during an asbestos survey?
The goal of an asbestos survey is to locate and identify asbestos in your property. Once this has been achieved, the asbestos itself will be tested to determine its type and condition.
Due to the delicate nature of asbestos, a qualified professional is required to carry out a full asbestos survey, and this should only be done before any structural work is carried out.
The surveyor will work thoroughly to locate all asbestos-containing materials throughout the building. They will inspect every area of the building, focusing in particular on locations that were typically known to be constructed with asbestos – ceiling and pipe insulation, for example.
A survey needs to be recorded in detail. The surveyors will take photographs of all suspected asbestos-containing materials they find. Once all potential asbestos has been located, samples will be taken and sent off for analysis. Once the results come back, you will gain a clear idea of as to the amount of asbestos in the property, and a report will be drawn up. This report details all the findings of the survey, as well as recommendations on how to proceed safely.
When is an asbestos survey needed?
For non-domestic properties constructed before the year 2000, an asbestos survey is required so that you have an informative record of the asbestos in your building, which allows for a risk management plan to be designed.
An asbestos survey is also required when carrying out any refurbishment or construction on these non-domestic properties, of if demolition is planned. Asbestos only becomes harmful when it is disturbed, so any building work should be treated as an asbestos risk.
If asbestos is found in your property, or has been found in a previous survey, you have a duty to carry out regular checks on the asbestos levels in the building. This is so that you can keep your asbestos-management plan and and asbestos risk register up to date.
What kind of asbestos survey do I need?
There are two typical types of asbestos survey:
- The management survey
- The refurbishment/demolition survey.
The management survey is carried out to manage asbestos during normal, everyday use of a non-domestic property. This survey: identifies any asbestos in the building, assesses the risk of disturbing/exposing asbestos fibres during normal occupation, details the condition of any asbestos containing materials.
A refurbishment/demolition survey needs to be carried out by a competent surveyor before a building undergoes full or part refurbishment, development or demolition. This survey identifies all the asbestos-containing material in the building, and is the first step in ensuring the safe handling and removal of asbestos during a structural project.
It is of absolute importance that this kind of survey is carried out by a qualified, competent asbestos expert, and that no work is carried out on the building until results of the survey have been delivered and a plan of action devised.
Asbestos Waste Solutions provide efficient, reliable and comprehensive asbestos disposal for properties throughout the UK. Our modern transfer station provides an alternative disposal option for asbestos, and we also carry out a thorough asbestos identification and quantification service. To find out more about all of our asbestos services, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our friendly team today.This entry was posted in Asbestos in the Home. Bookmark the permalink.