Asbestos Legal Requirements
Duty to Manage
The duty to manage the risk from asbestos came into force on 21st May 2004. This duty now falls within Regulation 4 of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012.
The duty to applies to all non-domestic premises. Such premises include all industrial buildings, commercial or public buildings such as factories, warehouses, offices, shops, hospitals and schools.
Non-domestic premises also include those ‘common’ areas of certain domestic premises, such as purpose-built flats or houses converted into flats. The common areas of these premises include foyers, corridors, lifts and lift-shafts, staircases, roof spaces, gardens, yards, outhouses and garages – but would not include the individual flats themselves. Common areas do not include rooms within a private residence that are shared by more than one household, such as bathrooms, kitchens etc. in shared houses and communal dining rooms and lounges in sheltered accommodation.
In the domestic sector local authorities and housing associations have the responsibility for very large numbers of properties which need a range of maintenance and repair work as well as general improvement and upgrading or occasionally demolition. This will be subject to Regulation 4 when these such premises become work places i.e. appointing contractors to carry out any work activities involving disturbing the fabric of the building.
These works can include electrical rewiring, structural repairs and alterations, replacement windows, central heating, insulation, renewal of bathroom and kitchen fittings or complete renovations. The work may be necessary on individual or small numbers of premises (eg emergency work due to fire/water/storm damage) or on large numbers where there are major improvement or upgrading schemes.
R.T.A. working in conjunction with the client can formulate the comprehensive detailed Management Plan which complies with their mandatory duties within current legislation Regulation 4 “Duty to Manage” of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012.
Identify who is the Duty Holder
The duty holder is someone who has the responsibility for the maintenance and / or repair of the non-domestic premises through a contract or tenancy; this could be a the head teacher, governors or local authority Where there is no contract or tenancy the duty falls to the person who is in control of the premises.
What are the responsibilities of the Duty Holder?
The requirements are placed on ‘dutyholders’, who should:
- take reasonable steps to determine the location of materials likely to contain asbestos;
- presume materials to contain asbestos, unless there are good reasons not to do so;
- make and maintain a written record of the location of the A.C.M’s and presumed A.C.M’s;
- assess and monitor the condition of A.C.M’s and presumed A.C.M’s;
- assess the risk of exposure from A.C.M’s and presumed A.C.M’s and prepare a written plan of the actions and measures necessary to manage the risk (ie the ‘management plan’); and
- take steps to see that these actions are carried out.
To manage the risk from A.C.M’s, the dutyholder will need to:
- keep and maintain an up-to-date record of the location, condition, maintenance and removal of all A.C.M’s on the premises;
- repair, seal or remove A.C.M’s if there is a risk of exposure due to their condition or location;
- maintain A.C.M’s in a good state of repair and regularly monitor their condition;
- inform anyone who is liable to disturb the A.C.M’s about their location and condition;
- have arrangements and procedures in place so that work which may disturb the A.C.M’s complies with CAR 2012; and
- review the plan at regular intervals and make changes if circumstances change.