Many Public Sector buildings contain Asbestos, however the general public are increasingly aware of the sheer number of public access buildings which contain this material.
The spot light has continued to shine on asbestos within public sector buildings following the news articles covering the prosecution of Belfast City Hospital over Asbestos failings, through to the recent scare at the Royal Liverpool hospital’s records storage facility; not to mention the issues concerning asbestos in Welsh and Northern Irish Schools and historical buildings across the UK, including the Houses of Parliament.
It is common for buildings constructed before the year 2000 to contain asbestos. Indeed a recent FOI request has uncovered that over 1000 Council-owned buildings in North Wales alone contain asbestos. However there is a growing fear amongst the general public about dangers within the buildings which could lead to a mass hysteria and demands to remove all asbestos materials in public buildings.
As UKAS Asbestos surveyors and management specialists, we know that Asbestos containing materials in buildings are safe as long as they are properly managed. The costs relating to the removal of asbestos in public buildings and offices would run into the millions for both the public and private sector. In this economic climate, this is not a cost that the UK or Ireland can consider, so we’re calling for all businesses and organisations located in buildings constructed before 2000 to listen to the HSE’s campaign and to take responsibility for clarification on whether Asbestos containing materials are contained within their buildings.
Remember ignorance will not protect the health of your work force!