Asbestos: How learning your ABC could help us to save lives

It's time to learn your asbestos ABC

At Acorn Analytical Services we have one very simple message – ABC – or Asbestos Before Construction.

It’s a simple message but it’s also an important one.

Before carrying out building work of any kind you must check for the presence of asbestos first. Not doing so could have potentially serious implications for the health of those around you, or at the very least lead to a costly fine as logistics giant, Eddie Stobart discovered earlier this month.

On November 4, the company was fined £133,000 by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) for an incident that happened in 2018. Excavation work at one of its sites in Cheshire led to the disturbance of Asbestos Containing Materials (ACMs), potentially putting staff at risk. A subsequent investigation by the HSE also found that a survey hadn’t been carried out and that staff hadn’t received the correct training.

The company, which has since said it is ‘fully committed to health and safety’ pleaded guilty, was fined £133,000 and ordered to pay costs of £9,260.

Always remember your ABCs

The thing to remember about asbestos is that it is all around us – in our offices, factories, shops, schools, hospitals and even our homes.

While its use has been banned in the UK for more than 20 years, it’s hidden away, in the very fabric of many older buildings, and you wouldn’t know it’s there unless you go searching for it.

And that’s where the team of experts at Acorn Analytical Services come in.

If you are carrying out building out work of any kind in the near future we would recommend a full asbestos survey to check for the presence of this hidden killer.

If your survey is clear, you’re good to go. If asbestos is found, we can give you all the information you need to make sure it is managed safely and within the latest regulations.

If you’re carrying out work on your premises and you know asbestos is present, you’ll need our specialist advice to help you navigate your project safely.

Asbestos air testing helps you to monitor the particles in the air, before, during and after work has been completed to ensure the safety of everyone on site. We can also provide mobile laboratories to ensure you have immediate results.

It’s never too late to learn

If you employ staff whose work could potentially lead to the disturbance of asbestos – we’re thinking maintenance staff, plumbers, electricians, demolition and construction workers and roofers, to name just a few – the right training is essential.

We’re fully accredited by the UK Asbestos Training Association (UKATA) and our training sessions are designed with tradespeople in mind. We give you all the information you need to avoid accidental disturbances as well as raising awareness of the dangers of asbestos more generally.

After the initial training session has been completed, refreshers should be carried out annually to ensure staff remain compliant with the latest regulations. You’ll receive a UKATA training certificate within 24 hours of passing your course and our experts are always on hand to answer any questions you may have.

All of our trainers have at least ten years’ experience in the asbestos industry and are approved by UKATA.  

With Acorn Analytical Services you’re always in safe hands.

Acorn is a professional asbestos consultancy helping organisations deal with compliance using surveysair testing, and removal management. 

Please call one of the team, or use the online form to obtain your free quotation. If you would like further information or advice on asbestos and asbestos training, contact the team on 0844 818 0895 or Contact Us

Neil Munro

I work in a dual role at Acorn Analytical Services focused primarily on growing and leading the business from our Northampton office base. My focus is on overseeing all sales, marketing and financial activities from Northampton. I assist clients with high-level asbestos management strategies and training. Together with Ian Stone I host our weekly podcast – Asbestos Knowledge Empire and I'm Co-author of Asbestos The Dark Arts and Fear and Loathing of Health and Safety.

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