The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 (CAR 2012):
Changes to the control of asbestos regulations have come into force as of 6th April with the introduction of The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 (CAR 2012).
The words “friable” and “without deterioration of non de-graded material” have now been added to Regulation 3(2) which defines the types of work required to be notified, that requires medical examination and record keeping.
Duty holders now need to be mindful of a new requirement to notify some types of non-licensed work to the HSE using a similar regime to current licensable work.
Previously works were either deemed licensed or non-licensed, but now there is a third category for duty holders to consider – notifiable non-licensed work (NNLW).
A 3 year transition period will apply for medical examinations to be carried out for those parties concerned and the HSE is currently looking at ways to expand the range of medical personnel permitted to do this.
Here in summary are details of the changes and the requirements that are unchanged.
• Some non-licensed work must now be notified to the relevant enforcing authority.
• Brief written records should be kept of non-licensed work, which has to be notified e.g. copy of the notification with a list of workers on the job, plus the level of likely exposure of those workers to asbestos. Air monitoring is not required, if an estimate of exposure can be made based on experience of similar past tasks or published guidance.
• By April 2015, all workers and the self-employed doing notifiable non-licensed work with asbestos must be under health surveillance by a Doctor. Workers who are already under health surveillance for licensed work need not have another medical examination for non-licensed work. However, medicals for notifiable non-licensed work are not acceptable for those doing licensed work.
• Some modernisation of language and changes to reflect other legislation, e.g. the prohibition section has been removed, as the prohibition of supply and use of asbestos is now covered by the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals Regulations 2006.
Staying the same
• Where existing asbestos containing materials are in good condition and unlikely to be damaged, they may be left in place. Their condition must be monitored and managed to ensure they are not disturbed.
• Clients responsible for the maintenance of non-domestic premises, have a ‘duty to manage’ the asbestos in them, to protect anyone using or working in the premises from the risks to health caused by exposure to asbestos.
• Building or maintenance work in premises, or on plant or equipment that might contain asbestos, must identify where the asbestos is and its type and condition and then assess, manage and control the risks.
• Requirements for licensed work remain the same: in the majority of cases, work with asbestos needs to be done by a licensed contractor. This includes most asbestos removal, all work with sprayed asbestos coatings and asbestos lagging and most work with asbestos insulation and asbestos insulating board.
• Non-licensed asbestos work requires effective controls.
• The control limit for asbestos at 0.1 asbestos fibres per cubic centimetre of air (0.1 fibres/cm3). The control limit is not a ‘safe’ level and exposure from work activities involving asbestos must be reduced to as far below the control limit as possible.
• Mandatory training for anyone liable to be exposed to asbestos fibres at work. This includes maintenance workers and others who may come into contact with or disturb asbestos (e.g. cable installers), as well as those involved in asbestos removal work.
Emplyers, landowners, businesses and public organisations owe a duty of care to the their employees, their constituents, the public and their friends to ensure that asbestos and its related hazardous materials are removed and disposed of correctly, and safely. Do not risk peoples lives and possibles fines/imprisonment.
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