Asbestos Survey

Richard Benwell is a qualified asbestos inspector and his work is regulated by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and the surveys offered are in accordance with HSG264 – Asbestos: The survey guide, we can assure customers of our ability to perform asbestos surveys.

We can advise on which type of asbestos survey is required, and discussing the methods and procedures involved in carrying out an appropriate assessment of asbestos containing materials suspected to be present.

The purpose of the asbestos survey is as follows:

  • to help manage asbestos in the duty holder’s premises.
  • To provide accurate information on the location, amount and condition of asbestos containing materials (ACMs)
  • To assess the level of damage or deterioration in the ACMs and whether remedial action is required
  • To use the survey information to prepare a record of the location of any asbestos (‘asbestos register’) and an asbestos plan of the building/s
  • To help identify all the ACMs to be removed before refurbishment work or demolition

It is best practice to carry out the sampling aspects of an asbestos survey when the building is least occupied, for example after normal working hours, at weekends or even better when the property is vacant. Asbestos can be an emotive and sensitive issue, and although our surveyors will always be as unobtrusive as possible whilst carrying out the necessary asbestos inspection, it is often best to arrange the work in such a way as to minimise disruption and undue concern.

There are 2 different types of asbestos survey: Asbestos Management Surveys and Refurbishment & Demolition Surveys. An Asbestos Management Survey will be required during the normal occupation and use of the building to ensure continued management of the asbestos containing materials (ACMs) in situ. A refurbishment or demolition survey will be necessary when the building (or part of it) is to be upgraded, refurbished or demolished.

In either case, the planning of the on site survey work needs to be given serious consideration. Asbestos related matters often evoke an alarmist reaction and this needs to be factored in when arranging site works.

  • 1. Asbestos Management Survey (previously type 1 & 2 asbestos surveys)

An asbestos management survey is the standard asbestos survey. Its purpose is to locate, as far as reasonably practicable, the presence and extent of any suspect asbestos containing materials (ACMs) in the building which could be damaged or disturbed during normal occupancy, including foreseeable maintenance and installation, and to assess their condition. Asbestos management surveys will often involve minor intrusive work and some disturbance. The extent of intrusion will vary between premises and depend on what is reasonably practicable for individual properties, i.e. it will depend on factors such as the type of building, the nature of construction, accessibility etc. An asbestos management survey should include an assessment of the condition of the various asbestos containing materials (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 asbestos containing materials (ACMs) as it will identify the materials which will most readily release airborne fibres if they are disturbed.

  • 2. Asbestos Refurbishment & Demolition Surveys (previously type 3 asbestos surveys)

An asbestos refurbishment and demolition survey is needed before any refurbishment or demolition work is carried out. This type of asbestos survey is used to locate and describe, as far as reasonably practicable, all asbestos containing materials (ACMs) in the area where the refurbishment work will take place or in the whole building if demolition is planned. The asbestos 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. An asbestos refurbishment and demolition survey may also be required in other circumstances, eg when more intrusive maintenance and repair work will be carried out or for plant removal or dismantling.

There is a specific requirement in CAR 2012 (regulation 5 “An employer shall not undertake work in demolition, maintenance or any other work which expose or is likely to expose his employees to asbestos in regards to any premises”.

To arrange an asbestos survey or for further information please contact Richard on 0800 2888 669

(courtesy of the Health & Safety Executive)