This is part two of our two-part blog on asbestos at work. Here we’ll go through how you can reduce the risk of asbestos and what you should do if you find suspicious material while you are at work.
Reducing the risk of asbestos
Working in a building with asbestos is not inherently dangerous. In fact, many homes and places of work have asbestos in them without ever posing a risk. The key issues are whether or not the asbestos is in good condition and whether it has been disturbed. Untouched asbestos won’t cause any health problems but if the fibres are allowed to get into the atmosphere it can have very serious consequences.
The best way to reduce the risk of asbestos is to leave it alone. If it is in poor condition, however, it can start to deteriorate which can also be hazardous. In this situation, steps may need to be taken to have the material removed.
I think I’ve found asbestos, what should I do?
If you think that you have discovered asbestos in your workplace, remember first that you should never try to deal with it yourself. If it is undisturbed then you should leave it alone and alert your employer or manager to its presence. If the material has been disturbed you should exit the area immediately and get your employer to put up signs indicating that asbestos has been released. You should then follow medical advice on cleaning as well as washing or disposing of clothes. It will then be up to your employer to take further steps to deal with the issue.
Calling in the professionals
Any time that you encounter asbestos that either you or your employer were not aware of, it’s vital that the experts are called in. Get in contact with asbestos specialists and they will be able to offer you asbestos surveys to identify the extent of the material and also provide removal services if they are necessary.