When it comes to asbestos removal, there are some specific EPA rules and guidelines that need to be followed. Asbestos is highly harmful material, and if you have any damaged or deteriorated asbestos features on your property, you would need to remove it without delay.
But this is quite a specific job and one that’s best left to qualified professionals. If you have asbestos features on your property, it’s also essential that you be aware of some basics about asbestos removal.
This is where SafeWork comes in. It is NSW’s workplace & safety regulator. They offer:
- Comprehensive advice on improving health and safety in the workplace
- Provide licences as well as registration for all types of potentially dangerous work
- Investigate workplace incidents while enforcing work health & safety laws in New South Wales
More than a third of the country’s economic output today comes from NSW. It also means that the work that this regulator does to ensure that workplaces are safe is very crucial. If you are a business or employer, it’s your responsibility to manage asbestos in the workplace. Here are the guidelines that you need to follow.
SafeWork Asbestos Removal Guidelines
Breathing in asbestos fibres is hazardous to health. It can cause mesothelioma, asbestosis, and lung cancer. The risk of contracting any of these diseases increases significantly when a larger volume of fibres are inhaled. If a person is a smoker, that increases the risk of getting lung cancer from the inhalation of asbestos fibres.
Those that suffer from health problems due to inhaling asbestos have typically been exposed to extremely high levels of asbestos for very long. The symptoms usually appear only 20-30 years post initial exposure.
If the asbestos fibres are in some stable feature such as fibro, they don’t pose that much of a risk. However, if the fibro is disturbed or damaged in some way, that can loosen the fibres, and they can become airborne, which poses a risk to people’s health.
If you believe that you or anyone in your workplace has been exposed to any level of asbestos, these are the steps that need to be followed:
- Stop all work immediately
- Report the incident immediately to your immediate manager
- Minimise the disturbance of the area and the material
- Inform all other workers to prevent access until this hazard is contained
- Establish an exclusion zone using warning signs and barricades to restrict access to the entire contaminated area completely
- Consult a licensed and qualified asbestos assessor to offer immediate advice on how to make the area safe. You should also obtain information regarding decontamination as well as proper disposal of clothing and other materials (as asbestos waste), from them
- Immediately contact SafeWork NSW on this number 131050 and report the incident.
- Contact certified asbestos professionals to undertake the removal works at the contaminated area and ensure the area is safe.
- SafeWork recommends that health monitoring needs to be supervised or undertaken by a registered medical practitioner who has experience in health monitoring. This should be done as soon as it’s practical and safe to do so after the exposure.
- The regulator also recommends that you register your details and specifics on the National Asbestos Exposure Register.
We at BreathEASY are an asbestos removal company that has been approved by the Australian Government. We handle projects of any shape and size. For any information on our services, contact us at02 8093 5461 or request a free quote through this form.