Builders, carpenters, electricians, joiners, plasterers, plumbers, and roofers, are just some of the trades being urged to take the risks of asbestos seriously. That’s the message from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
The workplace regulator has launched a new campaign to raise awareness of the risks associated with the dangerous substance. The campaign, called Asbestos and You, will target all tradespeople with a focus on younger workers in trades who have recently joined the industry.
HSE wants to reach construction workers who started their careers after the use of asbestos was banned by 1999. The regulator is concerned the length of time it takes for symptoms to develop after asbestos exposure could lead to a perception among today’s younger workers that it is something that only impacts older people who were working before the ban.
Five thousand people a year still die from asbestos related illnesses and asbestos can still be found in buildings built or refurbished before the year 2000. Asbestos containing materials were used extensively in the construction and maintenance of buildings in Great Britain from the 1950s until they were banned.
That means construction workers of all ages could still be exposed to asbestos fibres today.
HSE’s chief executive Sarah Albon said: “Asbestos exposure in Great Britain is still the single greatest cause of work related deaths. We are committed to protecting people in the workplace and reducing future work related ill health.
“Everyone working in construction today, of any age, must take the risk from asbestos seriously. Asbestos is dangerous when not maintained in a safe condition or if physically disturbed without the right measures in place to avoid fibres being released into the air.”
If asbestos fibres are inhaled, they can cause serious diseases such as mesothelioma, asbestos related lung cancer, asbestosis, and pleural thickening. Construction tradespeople of any age are at significant risk if they disturb materials containing asbestos during repairs and refurbishment.
More information about the HSE campaign can be found at: Asbestos & You Work Right to keep Britain safe, additionally, we can offer an asbestos awareness course:
The course will cover- the concept of the health effects of being exposed to asbestos, (mesothelioma, asbestosis), statistics surrounding asbestos, historical uses of asbestos and its properties, the types of asbestos that can be found, common found locations of asbestos, legislation surrounding asbestos, types of surveys that can be taken to find & control asbestos, emergency procedures for the discovery of asbestos, notification of removal & and how to remove asbestos. The course will also include videos and case studies to help ensure students have an interactive course. Call 01634 260631 for more information and to book or visit https://www.lighthousesafety.co.uk/training-courses/bespoke-training/asbestos-training/