Non-Domestic Properties

What are my responsibilities?

The duty to manage asbestos is contained in regulation 4 of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012. It requires the person who has the duty (ie the ‘dutyholder’) to:

  • Find out if there are asbestos containing materials present (most commonly requiring an Asbestos Survey).
  • Keep up-to-date, a record of the location and condition of identified/ suspected asbestos- containing materials (the Asbestos Register)
  • Assess the risk of anyone being exposed asbestos (Material, Priority & Risk Scores)
  • Prepare a plan that sets out in detail how the risks from asbestos will be managed (the Asbestos Management Plan)
  • Take the necessary steps to put the plan into action
  • Periodically review and monitor the plan and the arrangements to act on it so that the plan remains relevant and up-to-date
  • Provide information on the location and condition of the materials to anyone who is liable to work on or disturb them (Provide access to your asbestos register to visitors and contractors)

Who is the duty holder?

The dutyholder is the owner of the non-domestic premises or the person or organisation that has clear responsibility for the maintenance or repair.

What should I have to be compliant?

  • An up to date Asbestos Register
  • Priority and Risk Assessment scores
  • An up to date asbestos management plan
  • Suitably trained staff
  • Clear policies and procedures to manage and check for asbestos when carrying out work
  • Correct PPE and RPE if potentially coming into contact with asbestos
  • A face fit for any RPE used if potentially coming into contact with asbestos

Asbestos Register vs Asbestos Management Plan

A common mistake made by duty holders is assuming that because they have commissioned a Management Asbestos Survey they are now compliant.  This is not the case.

The Control of Asbestos Regulations (2012) places a ‘Duty to Manage’ on the dutyholder. Not a ‘Duty to Survey’ or a ‘Duty to Remove’.

The Asbestos Register is at its simplest a list of locations that contain confirmed or suspected asbestos.  It is typically included within an asbestos survey, and may be the result of a non-intrusive Management Survey or more intrusive Refurbishment/ Demolition survey.  We would always recommend that you get your survey carried out by a UKAS accredited inspection body, such as ourselves.

Having an up to date Asbestos Register, contained within your Management Asbestos Survey, is just one part of your Duty to manage.  Here are some things you should also be thinking about:

  • Have I read and understood the survey report?
  • Are there recommendations within the report that I need to act on?
  • How will I make the register available to visitors, staff and contractors?
  • How will I record who has checked the register and enforce checking it before works are carried out?
  • When will I commission the re-inspection of the register and who will do it?
  • When do I need a more intrusive survey and who will do it?
  • When do I need to remove asbestos and who will do it?
  • What training do I need to give my staff and contractors and who will do it?
  • When does this training need refreshing?
  • Who is responsible for managing contractors who might work with asbestos and what qualifications should we check that they have?
  • What do we do if we accidentally disturb or come across poor condition asbestos?
  • How do we record any exposure incidents and what information do we need to hold?

All of this should be included in your Asbestos Management Plan (AMP) which itself should be reviewed regularly and adapted as changes occur within your organisation.

When do I need a Refurbishment (R+D) survey?

Chances are that your current asbestos register is based on a Management (formerly known as a Type 2) Asbestos Survey.

This is a non-intrusive survey that will probably be fine for general redecoration but wont have gone beneath floorboards or fitted coverings, within wall cavities or above dropped ceilings.  It may also have caveated areas above 3 metres in height and exclude roofspaces or sub-floor ducts unless easily accessible.

A Refurbishment Asbestos Survey (formerly known as a Type 3) is a fully intrusive survey that will look at the areas affected by your project in detail.  This is a destructive survey and it should be anticipated that the surveyor will need to cut inspection holes within ceilings, walls and floors, as well as sealed boxings and ducts to uncover any asbestos that may be hidden beneath the surface.

Because it is a destructive survey we strongly recommend that you have this survey carried out once the area is vacant and decanted.

When do I need a Demolition survey?

As the name says the Demolition Asbestos Survey is required prior to demolition of any premises built before the year 2000. As with the Refurbishment Survey this is a destructive survey that will aim to find all asbestos within a building so that it can be safely removed before demolition works commence.

This is a destructive survey and it should be anticipated that the surveyor will need to cut inspection holes within ceilings, walls and floors, as well as sealed boxings and ducts to uncover any asbestos that may be hidden beneath the surface.

Because it is a destructive survey we strongly recommend that you have this survey carried out once the area is vacant and decanted.

Can Adams help with asbestos removal?

We certainly can.  Adams Environmental are independent of asbestos removal contractors and so can provide impartial specification production and tendering of asbestos removal works.  We can also assist with any analytical requirements of your project.

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