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Topic Title: Asbestos in electrical fittings
Topic Summary: How to verify if it is .......
Created On: 26 April 2013 07:17 PM
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 26 April 2013 07:17 PM
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dbullard

Posts: 1166
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Evening all,

After hard day at the coal face I now have time to post this question.

At 5 pm last night I received a call from a school asking if I could "Quote" for some work, I attended as arranged this morning and met the person who requested the works, Any way I entered the mans position and was met with a 50 year old installation, with some obvious recent editions and a copy of the defects from a recent EICR listing the observations of which the "A" word was almost the first word on the report.

Now I have taken a few pictures of the installation in question and have a fair picture of what I would describe as Asbestos shards or dust, I understand the difficulty with Identifying from a pic but others may have had a simillar experience with the "A" word.

The area in question is limited to below the higher length of trunking and below some old BILL switch gear which has what I would assume is Asbestos rope hanging out, no drilling has taken place in the mains position above these items so it must have come from within a small area above as the spread is very localised because of the weight of the dust.

Hope the links are of help, I have not had a great amount of dealings with Asbestos thankfully and this looks like nothing that I have seen before.

Text
Just a couple of pics but the whole area is visible

edit : my links are being removed will try a bit later

Regards

Daren

-------------------------
..... Dont pee in my pocket and tell me its raining ......


www.quest-electrical-sw.co.uk

Edited: 26 April 2013 at 07:31 PM by dbullard
 26 April 2013 07:31 PM
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OMS

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It may well be - that age of switchgear almost certainly had gaskets and arc shields that were asbestos containing materials (ACM's).

It may not be from the switchgear though - what's the room ceiling made of ?

In any event, the school has a duty to manage it.

Have you consulted with the asbestos register holder, viewed the register etc.

from there, it's easy enough to get it analysed at a lab and you have a definite answer.

In the absense of a CDM coordinator, work on the principal you are a designer and advise them of thier duties under the CDM regulations.

That will generally (as a minimum) require them to get a refurbishment and demolition survey (the old type 3 survey) undertaken by a licenced body

From there, a plan for removal can be devised.

It's a royal pain in the a**e from my side of the fence - but I don't have to go in there - the contractor does. So I make damn sure that my duty is met and that the client meets thiers so the contractors get to have a "safe" environment to work in and don't end thier days prematurely with an appaling lung disease, cancers or both - it's not an elegant way to go, trust me.

If it is just loose debris, then vacuuming via a HEPA filter will deal with it as a temporary measure - but that again is a job best left to those who know what they are doing.

If I'd come across it in similar circumstances, I'd be escalating it via the school to the LEA - it's the only way you can act within the legislation.

Don't guess, get it tested and act from there - HSE just love these type of cases - I've been caught in the middle of it before and it just soaks up time and resource - so start off on the right foot

Regards

OMS

-------------------------
Failure is always an option
 26 April 2013 07:35 PM
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SKElectrical

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The client has a duty by law to provide you with comprehensive asbestos report. I know this is so widely ignored its not funny (one of the main reasons I have stopped commercial installation to a large extent).
If in doubt, assume it is. Please don't take anybody's advice based on them viewing photos. Share your concerns with the client and ask them to foot the bill of testing it - you can even bag it and send it off. It's not that expensive - less than £200.
 26 April 2013 07:35 PM
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dbullard

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Cheers OMS

I will only take the correct course of action and as it is the schools / LA problem I can help to a certain extent.

At this moment I cant upload any links to my photo bucket account ??? unless the IET are undertaking some kind of maintenance.

You have a PM


Regards

Daren

-------------------------
..... Dont pee in my pocket and tell me its raining ......


www.quest-electrical-sw.co.uk
 26 April 2013 07:38 PM
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dbullard

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The only room not on the School asbestos register is ...........The Mains Intake and distribution room !!!!!!!

Im going back on Monday to take some more pictures and a quick measure up for the estimates required, I will also contact a local asbestos removal company for their advise.

Kind Regards

Daren

-------------------------
..... Dont pee in my pocket and tell me its raining ......


www.quest-electrical-sw.co.uk
 26 April 2013 07:39 PM
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SKElectrical

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Originally posted by: OMS

vacuuming via a HEPA filter


You don't own one of these. Do not vaccum it as you will spread the dust.
 26 April 2013 07:41 PM
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OMS

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I've seen the pics via quoting your OP - no PM yet

As I said - just escalate to the school - they can go up from there.

Don't do anything else at all - don't offer to test it, manage or give any further advice in any way shape or form.

We don't - we just advise the client of his duty and see that they are met.

the legal wrangling regarding asbestos is horrific - we won't go near it, and we aren't adverse to taking risk for reward if we think we can pass it on or manage it - that particular one we won't take on though - at any cost

regards

OMS


Regards

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Failure is always an option
 26 April 2013 07:42 PM
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sparkingchip

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 26 April 2013 07:49 PM
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OMS

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Originally posted by: SKElectrical

Originally posted by: OMS



vacuuming via a HEPA filter





You don't own one of these. Do not vaccum it as you will spread the dust.


If it is just loose debris, then vacuuming via a HEPA filter will deal with it as a temporary measure - but that again is a job best left to those who know what they are doing.


Regards

OMS

-------------------------
Failure is always an option
 26 April 2013 07:50 PM
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dbullard

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Thanks for the link .............

All printed for when I return on Monday, and I will ask them to arrange testing of the items involved and liaise accordingly.

All suggestions most welcome.

Regards

Daren

-------------------------
..... Dont pee in my pocket and tell me its raining ......


www.quest-electrical-sw.co.uk
 26 April 2013 08:00 PM
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OMS

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All suggestions most welcome.


Don't go back in there until it's resolved would be my suggestion

Start pricing up for a nice new modular switchboard and a load of din rail terminals in adaptable boxes to start the D&B of what has to be Phase 1 of a rewire

regards

OMS

-------------------------
Failure is always an option
 26 April 2013 08:06 PM
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dbullard

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It is a thing of beauty eh OMS, the report is not that great, no earth continuity on most of school lighting .................. etc etc etc, old slip tube in concrete and 50 years of corrosion.

I picked up a Hagar general catalogue today for inspiration ......

Many thanks

Daren

-------------------------
..... Dont pee in my pocket and tell me its raining ......


www.quest-electrical-sw.co.uk
 26 April 2013 08:08 PM
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sparkingchip

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I have looked at your photos http://photobucket.com/user/QU...library/?sort=3&page=1 and it is a hazard that needs treating as asbestos, any dust is dangerous.

However that is some serious shedding of fibres, is there a hole in the wall or ceiling allowing air to blow through a enclosure with asbestos rope or fuse pads in it? Are there rats or squirrels chewing boards up? Whatever is going on the whole area needs locking up and sealing pending action, it has to be spreading into the rest of the school unless this is a completely separate building.

Advise and consult, don't get a hoover out or sweep it up.

Andy
 26 April 2013 08:19 PM
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dbullard

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Originally posted by: sparkingchip

I have looked at your photos http://photobucket.com/user/QU...library/?sort=3&page=1 and it is a hazard that needs treating as asbestos, any dust is dangerous.



However that is some serious shedding of fibres, is there a hole in the wall or ceiling allowing air to blow through a enclosure with asbestos rope or fuse pads in it? Are there rats or squirrels chewing boards up? Whatever is going on the whole area needs locking up and sealing pending action, it has to be spreading into the rest of the school unless this is a completely separate building.



Advise and consult, don't get a hoover out or sweep it up.



Andy



Andy,

Where the dust and debris is placed is directly beneath an old switch fuse with the rope partially visible, no drilling has taken place, no drafts, no building voids or ventilation, no squirrels or vermin, it is very localized, I have never seen anything like it, and I been around a bit .

I am going back Monday morning after a weekend of Asbestos swatting armed with as much info as possible.

Regards

Daren

-------------------------
..... Dont pee in my pocket and tell me its raining ......


www.quest-electrical-sw.co.uk
 26 April 2013 08:52 PM
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savcab

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it is the clients responsibility to inform you of any potential risks via the asbestos register. if the room is not included then you must presume it is asbestos. as such you should inform the client that you suspect that it is potentially asbestos and it should be tested. until it is confirmed no further works should take place.

the bill royal type of switchgear will almost certainly have compressed asbestos rope seals and as such has a higher risk rating n the asbestos matrix. The removal of such materials requires notification to the Hse and the location vacuum sealed etc. the asbestos will then be removed by an approved asbestos removal firm.

the debris around the switchgear looks well spread around and in quite a copious amount. unlikely it's asbestos but you should treat it as such until proved otherwise.

there is also a possibility that asbestos fibres will be present on the busbar top as there appears to be some newish FP in the fire switch so asbestos could have been disturbed by others previously. the bill switches will again almost certainly have asbestos flash pads in the fuse holders some of which are 85% asbestos.

my advice is to get the client to update there asbestos register by getting it tested before you do anything else.

hope this helps a bit.
 18 February 2014 11:38 AM
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mudassar1

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Here's the scenario - I am a governor of a large secondary school that converted to Academy Status around a year ago. There is now a discussion, and that is all it is, around whether the LEA might "take" the asbestos register as they initially created it.....
My thoughts are; if they do take the register then we will simply copy it and continue. There are no technical issues with the register, it's very good.
Why would they? They have no need of it - it's the school buildings and they've been transferred to the new body. Surely the register should transfer along with ownership of the buildings?
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