Although asbestos has been outlawed in the UK since 1999, the dangerous chemical can still be found in homes across the country.
For many years, asbestos was used in the construction industry because of its many beneficial features. The substance is good for soundproofing and insulation, and it may be ground into powder and used to strengthen concrete mixtures and coatings to give them more strength and longevity.
Unfortunately, asbestos may be extremely harmful to human health if it is in an improper state. In fact, it may wreck havoc on any demolition or large-scale renovation project. But why is it dangerous now when it isn’t at other times?
We’ll look at why asbestos is so deadly during demolition operations and why you should take precautions to avoid it.
When is asbestos the most hazardous?
Asbestos is well-known for being a highly hazardous substance. Asbestos is still widely used in residential, commercial, and industrial buildings throughout the UK, although it is not usually known that it is only dangerous when it is in poor condition or has been damaged.
When asbestos filaments are able to enter the air, it is harmful. They can be inhaled into the lungs, where they are nearly impossible to
remove and can cause long-term damage.
If a building or a portion of a building is demolished without proper asbestos testing, asbestos fibres may be released into the air.
Because asbestos poses a significant risk during demolition, it is critical that you plan your demolition carefully. Asbestos reports, which describe the location and condition of any asbestos contained in a building, are usually already in place.
You should not, however, assume that these reports are still accurate. Asbestos’ state can worsen, posing issues for your demolition job.
Anyone in charge of the demolition has a duty of care to any demolition employees, as well as anyone else on the premises, to ensure that they are protected from asbestos exposure.
If asbestos-containing dust is released into the air during a demolition, dealing with it can be extremely difficult. At this point, the only
options are to keep testing the air quality and wait for the fibres to settle.
Surveys of Refurbishment and Demolition
A Refurbishment and Demolition Survey is required if you are doing any type of refurbishment or demolition on a property.
Type 3 asbestos surveys, as they were previously known, use destructive and invasive technologies to determine the extent of asbestos in a building’s fabric. Roof voids, wall interiors, solid floors, and undercrofts will all be assessed during this type of survey.
If asbestos is discovered during the survey, you may need to take precautions before proceeding with the demolition process. This may require asbestos removal.
We are the experts in testing for asbestos. Give us a call.