HBE Asbestos SurveyA handyman has been prosecuted after releasing asbestos fibres while refurbishing a kitchen at a flat in Birmingham.

Inspectors from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found the general handyman, had removed partition walls containing asbestos insulating board at the premises.

The Magistrates’ Court heard the handyman had wrongly assumed he was dealing with asbestos cement, which does not require specialist contractors to remove it, and went ahead with the job. As a result, both he and the tenant were potentially exposed to asbestos dust.

He spread asbestos debris in the kitchen, on the communal stairs and loaded the removed pieces of asbestos insulating board into his car. By law it should have been disposed of by an approved carrier of asbestos waste.

The incident was discovered when a licensed asbestos removal contractor, who was working elsewhere in the building, spotted pieces of asbestos outside and alerted the HSE. The court heard the area and the handyman’s car had to be decontaminated.

Source: HSE