One of the core services offered by Safeline Environmental is asbestos surveys. These surveys reveal whether there is a need to dispose of and remove asbestos on a property.
What is an asbestos survey?
If you suspect asbestos is present on your property, you should have an asbestos survey carried out. This survey will tell you whether asbestos is present, whereabouts it is located, how much you have and the kind of asbestos-containing materials you need to deal with.
Once the survey has been completed, a risk assessment and management plan can be completed. During the survey, asbestos-containing materials will be sampled and analysed. Surveying can only be completed by a competent professional who has sufficient experience in this area.
Different types of surveys
Most people are unaware of the type of asbestos surveys that are required or the standards and limitations of each of the types of the survey. There is no “one size fits all”, asbestos surveys (HSG 264) are split into two basic types of survey:
HSG 264 Asbestos Management Surveys
A management survey is a standard asbestos survey, the purpose of which is to locate, where practicable, the presence of any suspect ACMs in the building which has the potential to be damaged or disturbed during normal occupancy. This Survey needs to include foreseeable maintenance and any further installation. Management asbestos surveys generally will involve minor intrusive work and some disturbance of the suspected asbestos.
The extent of intrusion will vary between premises, i.e., it will depend on factors such as the type of building, the nature of construction, accessibility etc. A management asbestos survey includes an assessment of the condition of the various ACMs and their ability to release fibres into the air if they are disturbed in some way. This ‘material assessment’ will give a good initial guide to the priority for managing ACM.
HSG 264 Asbestos Refurbishment and Demolition Surveys (Fully Intrusive Inspections)
A refurbishment and demolition survey are needed before any refurbishment or demolition work is carried out, the survey will be fully intrusive and involve destructive inspection, as necessary, to gain access to all areas, including those that may be difficult to reach. A refurbishment and demolition survey may also be required in other circumstances, e.g., when more intrusive maintenance and repair work will be carried out or for plant removal or dismantling.
Refurbishment and demolition surveys are intended to locate all the asbestos in the building, and it is a disruptive and fully intrusive survey that may need to penetrate all parts of the building structure. Aggressive inspection techniques will be needed to lift carpets and tiles, break through walls, ceilings, cladding, and partitions, and open up floors which may include asbestos, and, in these situations, controls should be put in place to prevent the spread of potential asbestos debris.
Refurbishment and demolition surveys should only be conducted in unoccupied areas to minimise risks to the public or employees and ideally, the building should not be in service, and all furnishings removed. The ‘surveyed’ area must be shown to be fit for reoccupation before people move back in. This will require a thorough visual inspection and, if appropriate (e.g., where there has been significant destruction), reassurance air sampling with disturbance. Under no circumstances should staff remain in rooms or areas of buildings when intrusive sampling is performed.
Are asbestos surveys required by law?
The answer is “it depends on the circumstances”:
- Yes - where you have a property and you are undergoing maintenance, refurbishment, or demolition and asbestos could be disturbed and pose a risk to staff, the public and everybody else. This applies in particular, where you do not have the required information to reduce or eliminate that risk
- No – where the above does not apply
What legislation currently applies for the need for surveys for asbestos?
The current applicable legislation for the need for a survey is “The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 (CAR)”. The three applicable regulations, which can be assessed/managed through a survey for asbestos are:
- Regulation #4 - Duty to manage asbestos in non-domestic premises
- Regulation #5 - Identification of the presence of asbestos and
- Regulation #6 - Assessment of work which exposes employees to asbestos
How to select an accredited organisation
UKAS is the official body that is responsible for accrediting all asbestos-related work in the UK, this includes surveys. Accredited UKAS organisations can be found and verified on the UKAS website.
Safeline Environmental is a UK-wide asbestos services company (with close proximity to the West Midlands and East Midlands). We work to HSG-264 standards and are also fully accredited to UKAS ISO-17020.
What types of surveys can Safeline Environmental provide?
Safeline Environmental can provide professional Asbestos Surveys and services at all levels as required.
Booking a survey with Safeline Environmental
Why not contact us to book an asbestos survey? You can contact us through any of the following methods: