The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2006 came into force in November 2006.
These Regulations bring together the three previous sets of Regulations covering the prohibition of asbestos, the control of asbestos at work and asbestos licensing.
The Regulations prohibit the importation, supply and use of all forms of asbestos. They continue the ban introduced for blue and brown asbestos in 1985 and for white asbestos in 1999. They also continue to ban the second-hand use of asbestos products such as asbestos cement sheets and asbestos boards and tiles; including panels which have been covered with paint or textured plaster containing asbestos.
Duty to manage asbestos
The Asbestos Regulations also include the 'duty to manage asbestos’ in non-domestic premises which gives a clear duty to identify and manage asbestos containing materials, this places the responsibility on anyone responsible for non-domestic properties, ranging from building managers, land lords to main contractors.
Are you a dutyholder?
According to the ACOPL127 the ‘dutyholder’ includes employers and the self-employed if they have responsibilities for maintaining or repairing non-domestic premises and the owner of those premises whether they are occupied or vacant. The duties in the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2006 will rest with the person in control of maintenance in the non-domestic premises, whether that be the occupier or landlord.
This will involve carrying out an inspection of the building. Ideally, an independent expert can be appointed from a specialist organisation to undertake this work. (Note the task can be delegated but not the legal responsibility). The results of the inspection should indicate the locations of ACMs, the risk of fibre release from the material, the condition of the material and how likely they are to be damaged. This information must then be recorded in an asbestos register and be maintained on site for the life of each building and must be available, for example to any visiting contractor to prevent accidental exposure. The register should be periodically updated.
If you are a duty holder and require further assistance in managing your asbestos risk or producing your survey do not hesitate to contact us for professional advice and assistance.