Assist welcome changes in Asbestos Regulations – CAR 2012
Assist today welcomed the Health and Safety Executive’s changes to the Control of Asbestos Regulations, saying this could affect up to 730,000 workers in the UK.
Changes to the Control of Asbestos Regulations come into force today (6 April 2012) following amendments to bring the UK legislation in to line with the minimum standards of the EU Asbestos Worker Protection Directive.
The biggest change affects the current "Non-Licensable" work on asbestos. This category represents the vast majority of all work carried out on asbestos within the UK, affecting some 1.8m workers annually. The "Licensed" category of work on asbestos – affecting some 9,000 workers - is not intended to be affected.
The "Non-Licensable" category will be split into two and an additional category will be created which will be termed "Notifiable Non-Licensable Work" (NNLW). This will sit between the current "Non-Licensable" and "Licensable" categories. Works that fall into this category must be: notified, each worker exposed must have medical surveillance every three years and the employer must maintain a register for each worker of the type and duration of work done with asbestos - to be kept for 40 years along with copies of all medicals.
Ian Guest, Director Assist Facilities Management commented:
“We welcome these measures as they reflect the highly specialised nature of the work which is carried out by asbestos operatives at all levels, and the huge beneficial effect their work has on the health of the public at large. These changes also enhance the professional standing of the asbestos management industry.”
He went on to say:
“The outcome will be far-reaching and wide. The HSE estimates that there are around four million properties in the UK that contain asbestos. Within these properties the HSE estimate that several million notifications will be required by the new category each year; involving some 730,000 workers.”
Read the full regulations here: www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2012/632/pdfs/uksi_20120632_en.pdf