My day yesterday was a busy one of dog walk in the very cold weather again. I returned to make Lunch of baked jacket potato, red cabbage and apple chutney.
Then I started baking and didn’t stop. A scone round, Scones, Hot cross buns and a loaf. Im terrible for getting flour everywhere so I had a lot of washing up to do.
The kitchen all cleared up and all the baking done. The house smelt lovely but when I took the hot cross buns out of the oven they looked great– but they are for tomorrow so we will just have to drool.
Heather Von St James and Christine Winters at the ADAO Conference where Christine spoke for IATP. Christine has let me print her speech as a personal interview here .
“United Kingdom Ban Asbestos Efforts: Where Professionals and Patients Unite”
Good Afternoon Ladies and Gentlemen. My name is Christine Winter, IATP Chair Person.
IATP is delighted to be attending the 9th Annual ADAO Asbestos Awareness Conference.
At ADAO’s request our presentation this year focuses on RESPONSIBILITY and ACCOUNTABILITY … Across several areas that are impacted by asbestos products that lead to asbestos exposure.
Duty to Manage
I want to focus on one area first “Duty to Manage” This law covers all non-domestic buildings, protecting people in the workplace, the common/public areas social housing, in hotels, retail premises and outlets, effectively all buildings that are for public use be it for employment or pleasure.
On the 22nd March 1974 the Secretary of State for Employment introduced the Health and Safety at Work Act (abb HASWA 1974); this act of Parliament gained Royal Assent on the 31st July 1974
Regulation/ statutory Instrument
On the 21st of November 2002 the UK Parliament introduced a new Regulation specifically for the management of asbestos in the built environment; referred to as Regulation 4 the Duty To Manage asbestos in non-domestic properties.
Approved Code of Practice
It had a lead in of 18 months and as such became absolute on the 21st May 2004, this has meant duty holders in the UK have had almost a decade to identify, asses and manage ACM’s in the fabric of the buildings for which they have a legal duty to manage, it is estimated the UK has half a million non-domestic premises containing asbestos.
The question is this, given nearly ten years of the legal duty to manage asbestos in the UK. Has all the asbestos been found and under a management plan or been removed?
The answer is a resounding no!!!
To this very day there are employees (workers) exposed to asbestos dust/ fibres at work and they will not know it, neither will their employers nor their clients, even though the employers and the clients have legal duties and responsibilities where asbestos poses a health hazard.
An unfortunate consequence of workers being exposed and going home contaminated is that family members also end up being exposed to the deadly affects asbestos fibres in the lungs.
There are almost 2,500 new cases of Mesothelioma in the UK each year. This number is expected to rise by 100-120 a year until at least 2015, given current trends and forecast as to the management, abatement and education for those who present exposure risks in their employment. (source TUC) this will take the expected mortality rate to in excess of 10,000 per annum, ladies and gentlemen I put it to you that this figure even if one! Is unacceptable.
When the figure I have espoused too is transferred to a global population the future mortality rate is to be measured in the hundreds of thousands globally and this is only for the known world.
Who is the Duty Holder?
The duty-holder in this case means every person who, either by contract or tenancy, has an obligation of any kind to maintain and/or repair non-domestic premises, in other words, workplaces. It also applies to the means of access and egress of a building or workplace.
But the regulation spreads the duty even wider by saying that even if there is not a contract, a person who has control over a workplace or part of it also carries that responsibility.
That seems clear enough but things do get a little more confused when there is more than one occupier or duty-holder. The duty holder may well be the landlord, tenant or a managing agent, depending on the circumstances, and of course there may well be more than one tenant. An example may be old warehouses that have been converted to offices or workshops. The extent of responsibility will be determined by the extent of the person’s or organisation’s obligation to maintain and repair the premises.
The regulation also includes a duty to cooperate, which applies widely. This will, for example, require an employer who is a tenant to allow a landlord to gain access to a building to carry out a survey. Also a building surveyor or architect who had plans which show information on the whereabouts of asbestos would be expected to make these available to the duty holder at a reasonable cost.
Information and training
In order to do this the employer and/or duty holder will need information, instruction and training to ensure that they are carrying out their responsibilities properly. They also need to ensure that employees and others have received appropriate information, instruction and training to ensure that they can comply with the requirements of the duty holder.
This is covered by Regulation 10; one must not separate a set of Regulations as though they are separate individual Regulations, what I mean by this is there are 35 Regulations that make up CAR2012 in the UK, 3 days before travelling to the USA I listened to a Parliamentary broad cast whereby a legal person trained in law sprouted that Regulation 4 does not document training, well of course it would not as Regulation 10 specifically outlines what the legal requirement is regarding asbestos and asbestos exposure from a information, instruction and training perspective is.
The duty to manage requires those in control of premises to:
take reasonable steps to determine the location and condition of materials likely to contain asbestos;
presume materials contain asbestos unless there is strong evidence that they do not;
make and keep an up to date record of the location and condition of the ACMs or presumed ACMs in the premises;
assess the risk of the likelihood of anyone being exposed to fibres from these materials;
prepare a plan setting out how the risks from the materials are to be managed;
take the necessary steps to put the plan into action;
review and monitor the plan periodically; and
Provide information on the location and condition of the materials to anyone who is liable to work on or disturb them.!!!!
I will finish this slide with this statement. Given all the Laws, Approved Codes of Practice (which carry a legal status in the British courts) and guidance’s which are established and have been qualified by many prosecutions within the UK Are people being exposed to asbestos in the UK?
The answer is yes!
My husband is a trainer in the asbestos industry within the UK, a person with knowledge, experience of asbestos in the built environment, its management and removal is exposed to asbestos at work, this year 2013 on attending a client’s site to undertake asbestos training which precludes the use of asbestos for training in section 3 of CAR2012 the prohibition regulations, asbestos was in abundance in very poor state within the clients building fabric, the ACM was/is a pre formed section also hard set insulation on hundreds of meters of pipe insulation, all contained within the confines of a very large basement area.
Typical uncontrolled fibre release from lagging material with typical Amphibole content of 85% is in the order up to 100 f/cm³ (fibres per cubic centimeter), the average adult human lung capacity is +- 1.4 litres to 1.6 litres for a non smoker, (given there are 1000 cubic centimeters per litre) we would be looking at 104,000 to 106,000 fibres per breath, at what point does the exposure to asbestos become fatal? Unfortunately medical science cannot answer that question.
What is known if one does not breathe asbestos in then asbestos cannot pose a risk to health.
Ban it. Manage it. Remove it.