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IET factfile: Health and Safety - Asbestos

A health and safety briefing provided by the IET.

A set of regulations “The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2006 (Statutory Instrument No. 2739)” came into force on 13 November 2006. The Regulations bring together the three previous sets of Regulations covering the prohibition of asbestos, the control of asbestos at work, and asbestos licensing. The regulations:

  • Continue to prohibit the importation, supply and use of all forms of asbestos.
  • Continue the ban the second-hand use of asbestos products such as asbestos cement sheets and asbestos boards and tiles.
  • Include the ‘duty to manage asbestos’ in non-domestic premises.

The ban on asbestos only applies to new use of asbestos. Existing asbestos containing materials that are in good condition may be left in place. However under the duty to manage asbestos their condition must monitored and managed to ensure that the materials are not disturbed.

The Regulations require mandatory training for anyone liable to be exposed to asbestos fibres at work. This includes maintenance workers and others who may come into contact with or who may disturb asbestos (e.g. cable installers) as well as those involved in asbestos removal work.