What is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a naturally occurring silicate mineral mined from rock that was imported into the UK since 1870 during the Industrial Revolution. Over the years, due to its properties Asbestos had many applications and was used in building infrastructure, textiles, electrical appliances and many other applications. However, Asbestos has damaging effects on an individual's health when the fibres are inhaled, sometimes fatal, if not managed properly. Asbestos is the biggest occupational killer in the United Kingdom.
Asbestos can be found in any building constructed or refurbished before the year 2000 sometimes even post 2000. Workers who disturb the fabric of buildings during maintenance, refurbishment, repair, installation and related activities may be exposed to asbestos every time they unknowingly work on ACMs or carry out work without taking the correct precaution. The purpose of managing asbestos in buildings is to prevent or, where this is not reasonably practicable, minimise exposure for these groups of workers and other people in the premises. To prevent this exposure, a survey might be needed to confirm the presence of asbestos in the building, so that an assessment can be made about the risk it presents and appropriate measures put in place to manage those risks.