Asbestos in Soil – Surveys, Risk Assessment & Removal

Asbestos in soil has been causing big challenges for many years. If this asbestos isn’t dealt with effectively, the results can be catastrophic. However, the level of risk largely depends on the kind of material that is resent in the soil. Read on to find out more about asbestos in soil, creating an asbestos management plan for soil and what you can do if you suspect you are facing this problem.

Where is asbestos contamination in soil typically found?

The vast majority of asbestos in soil is found in brownfield sites. Asbestos can be found on soil due to previous demolition work or because imported crushed materials have not been screened for asbestos efficiently. Asbestos may also be found in soil because ACMs or asbestos containing materials have been dumped illegally. This can occur at brown field and greenfield sites. Ground contamination spread can also occur from former asbestos plants and facilities, and asbestos can also be mixed with burnt materials after fires.

If you have contaminated soil, it is important to know if it contains asbestos

If you have contaminated soil, it is important to know if it contains asbestos

Is asbestos in soil dangerous?

If asbestos contamination in soil is left undisturbed, the level of risk to humans is normally negligible. However, there are many reasons why asbestos fibres may be disturbed and sent into the atmosphere. Disturbance can occur during site work, investigations and when vehicles move through contaminated areas. We can help if you need to have an asbestos soil survey carried out.

What does ‘friable’ mean?

The term ‘friable’ refers to how the likelihood that an ACM will give off airborne fibres. The more disturbance occurs, the greater the likelihood of asbestos exposure becomes. It’s possible for all kinds of asbestos to be found within soils. These can include asbestos lagging, insulation products, asbestos insulation board and loose-fill asbestos insulation.

What are some examples of lower risk asbestos materials?

Examples of asbestos-containing materials that are deemed to pose a lower risk to the public include floor tiles, textured coatings, and asbestos cement. Asbestos is still killing 5000 people in the UK, so it certainly shouldn’t be regarded as a thing of the past.

Are asbestos fibres always visible in soils?

No. Sometimes the fibres are not visible to the naked eye. This can happen because materials have been broken down and crushed into tiny fragments. A laboratory test will need to be carried out if you suspect that asbestos is present within the soil, but it is not visible.

What should I do if work needs to be carried out on asbestos contamination in soil?

You have a legal duty to make sure that these works are carried out safely and do not harm anyone likely to be involved in the project in some way. These people can include not only yourself and your contractors but visitors to your site and people living close by. If you’re not sure what your obligations are when it comes to asbestos contamination in soil, help is available. Safeline Environmental can help you remain compliant with laws surrounding asbestos.

How Safeline can help

At Safeline, we have a great deal of experience when it comes to working with asbestos in soils. We have incredible knowledge of this subject and can help you deal with all levels of contamination. Environments that we have worked in include small homes to former asbestos factories. You can rest assured that we always prioritise the safety of our clients throughout each part of the process.

Asbestos soil testing from Safeline

We are here to test, assess and investigate your environment to determine whether asbestos contamination in soil is present and remove it if necessary. You will receive a comprehensive view of our findings and detailed information on the risks associated with any asbestos that we detect. We will also provide you with in-depth advice on what to do next if asbestos is found on your site. The testing will inform you what kind of asbestos is present in your soil, the specific location of the asbestos and its density.

Let Safeline sample and test your soil

Let Safeline sample and test your soil

Why choose Safeline?

There are many great reasons for choosing us if you do suspect that asbestos is present on your site. We have been a leading player in our field for many years and were first set up by two highly experienced analysts. We are incredibly proud of our attention to detail, the standard of workmanship, record keeping, training and flawless customer service standards. Our asbestos removal business is run to analytical laboratory standards.

Who uses Safeline?

At Safeline, we have a highly diverse customer network. We offer a nationwide service, with our clients including insurers, claims management companies, schools, hospitals, and large international enterprises. Why not get in touch with Safeline at your earliest opportunity if you do suspect you have asbestos contamination in soil and wish to find out more about the level of risk that you’re facing. We’re also here for you if you need an asbestos soil survey, asbestos management plan for soil or asbestos removal service.

Contact Safeline

You can reach us by completing the form on our site, by calling us on 01299 251083 or by sending a message to We’ll get back to you as quickly as we possibly can.



Image Credits: Wikipedia and Gary Rogers