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Asbestos : Quick Facts

Published by Safety Net Team

March 23, 2022

Asbestos: Quick Facts

  • Breathing in air containing asbestos fibres can lead to asbestos-related diseases including the fatal diseases asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma.
  • Under the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 there is a specific duty on the owners of properties to manage asbestos if present.
  • Duty holders (eg owners, occupiers and managing agents) have to assess whether asbestos or asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) is, or is suspected to be, in non-domestic premises.  
  • The duty holder must determine the risk posed by the asbestos of the ACMs or presumed ACMs in their premises.
  • The size of the fibre, its diameter, the concentration of fibres and the length of time of exposure to asbestos will all affect the risk of developing disease.
  • Where exposure to asbestos cannot be avoided, employers must introduce control measures to reduce the risk as far as reasonably practicable. A written plan must be prepared that identifies the areas of concern and the necessary control measures.
  • Work with asbestos, subject to certain exemptions where the exposure is sporadic and of low intensity, cannot be undertaken unless the employer holds a licence granted by the Health and Safety Executive, if it considers it appropriate.

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