Asbestos awareness – what must employers do?
Employers must ensure that employees and other persons are informed of the dangers, hazards and risks involved and of any precautions that should be taken. Asbestos training will inform employers of exactly how to do this.
Asbestos training courses provide employers with the knowledge required to keep their employees safe.
Employees must be provided with:
- Asbestos awareness training
- Safe Work Method Statements including emergency procedures.
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) (available for use if required)
- Facilities to safely wash and remove PPE and clothing before they leave the workplace (if required to handle ACM)
Employees are to be notified in writing if asbestos work is being carried out.
All persons must be warned, by the use of signs, labels or other similar measures, of the presence of asbestos or asbestos-containing material in a place at which work is being carried out around asbestos.
Employers must identify, and implement measures to prevent any disturbance of asbestos-containing material while work is being carried out. For example, if asbestos is encapsulated, or sealed, the employer cannot allow any asbestos fibres to be released into the air – they must seal off the asbestos and areas where it exists.
An employer must ensure that procedures are in place for:
• The cleaning of premises at which asbestos work is carried out;
• The laundering and cleaning of personal protective equipment used for asbestos work;
• The containment of asbestos waste; and
• The disposal of asbestos and asbestos-containing material safely according to Environmental Protection Authority standards and guidelines (e.g. disposed of to a legitimate hazardous waste facility).
An employer must ensure that no asbestos-containing material, including asbestos cement, is reused in connection with the carrying out of construction work.
An employer must not allow the use of high-pressure hoses to clean the surface of asbestos-containing material, including asbestos cement or any structures that consist of or contain asbestos, during the carrying out of construction work.
As you can see, asbestos training is a very valuable tool for helping to keep workplaces safe from the hazards of asbestos. If you work in the building industry you may be required to complete your asbestos awareness training. Asbestos training coursescan be completed online.
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