Renovating a commercial property? You might need an asbestos refurbishment survey

Asbestos-refurbishment-survey

Many of our country’s older buildings contain high levels of asbestos, and with the common change of building use we’ve seen over the last few decades – banks into restaurants, for example, or warehouses transformed into craft centres – an asbestos refurbishment survey has become an integral part of the renovation process.

These vital surveys protect the health and safety of construction workers and site visitors, and ensure compliance with important health and safety regulations. The Control of Asbestos Regulations, 2012, places a ‘duty to manage’ asbestos in non-domestic building on certain individuals, typically those in charge of building maintenance.

Asbestos use in the UK

The use of this carcinogenic substance, which historically took precedence in the construction industry as a fireproofing and insulating material, is now banned in the UK but its continued presence in the general fabric of many buildings is a matter of great concern.

So if you’re planning to renovate a commercial property, how do you comply with the law and what do asbestos refurbishment surveys involve?

Asbestos refurbishment surveys minimise the risk to health

To comply with asbestos legislation you need to find out where all asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) lie within the areas of your building to be refurbished, and identify their type. Materials might include asbestos cement products, for example, or partition walling that contains the substance.

An asbestos refurbishment survey is intrusive and destructive by nature, and will disturb any asbestos present, which is why the building must be unoccupied until certified fit for reoccupation.

Key aspects of an asbestos refurbishment survey

Detailed scope of works

This is needed to inform the extent of the survey.

Confirmed refurbishment plans

Refurbishment plans will determine the specific areas for surveying. This is likely to include ‘hidden’ areas such as within the building’s walls or floor voids, behind cladding, and underneath floor coverings.

Removal of furniture and other items

Removing furniture and other items from the areas to be surveyed allows easier access for surveyors. Steps should also be taken to minimise the spread of debris wherever possible.

Examination and air-testing

Following a survey the area will be checked for the presence of asbestos dust and fibres, by visual examination and potentially air testing, prior to the area being certified fit for reoccupation.

Asbestos testing

Any samples of materials suspected of containing asbestos will be tested to confirm their makeup.

Refurbishment survey report

All findings are detailed in a comprehensive report, allowing you to develop an asbestos register and an asbestos plan if you don’t already have them.

Asbestos remediation

A consultation takes place, and professional advice provided on asbestos remediation where necessary.

An asbestos refurbishment survey may also be needed if specific parts of your building require extensive maintenance or repair that affects its fabric. Acorn Analytical Services are asbestos experts and offer a full range of asbestos surveys, including a management survey, an asbestos refurbishment survey, and an asbestos demolition survey.

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.

Need Help? Request a Call Back

Request a call back from one of our expert Asbestos Consultants who will help you identify what you need

More Asbestos Articles

JANshutterstock 1381443422 sml

Weird locations and uses of asbestos

In this blog we’re looking at the weird and wonderful locations and uses of asbestos that we’ve come across. Asbestos was used everywhere and thousands of different materials had asbestos added to them. Kent cigarettes One example that springs to mind is the old American Kent cigarette brand which contained asbestos in their filter. The …

Read MoreWeird locations and uses of asbestos

Joe Gore 6 scaled e1609755591688

Focus on our Birmingham Office lead Joe Gore

Back in November we were thrilled to reveal we had launched a new office in Birmingham which is being expertly led by Asbestos Consultant Joe Gore. Joe has been incredibly busy working on a wide variety of projects across the West Midlands since then but we caught up with him to find out how he …

Read MoreFocus on our Birmingham Office lead Joe Gore

Acorn Analytical Services Asbestos Solutions commecial photography 55

Why you should use lockdown to deal with your asbestos

So here we are entering a New Year. Traditionally, a time for optimism and new beginnings but this week’s announcement of the latest national lockdown left many businesses reeling. Almost a year on from the first national lockdown you could be forgiven for thinking we’re living through some kind of strange Groundhog Day but the …

Read MoreWhy you should use lockdown to deal with your asbestos

Acorn Analytical Services Asbestos Solutions commecial photography 36

Don’t fall foul of the law – make sure you get the correct Asbestos Survey

At Acorn Analytical Services we invest a lot of time into making people aware about the dangers of asbestos for two key reasons. One is the human cost – exposure to asbestos can cause life-changing illnesses and incurable cancers – and the second reason is the cost it poses to businesses. It is so important …

Read MoreDon’t fall foul of the law – make sure you get the correct Asbestos Survey

Acorn Analytical Services Asbestos Solutions commecial photography 28

£2bn Government gold rush could be an asbestos minefield

This autumn, the Government launched a new scheme to promote home insulation. It is subsidising home insulation ventures with grants of up to £5,000 which can be used to install insulation, double glazing, smart controls and more. This is great news for the environment and for the economy however, we do have concerns about it. …

Read More£2bn Government gold rush could be an asbestos minefield

Collage e1608286815218

Fighting back against asbestos-related cancer

Acorn Analytical Services is backing a new campaign aimed at putting asbestos and asbestos-related diseases in the national spotlight to raise awareness and eradicate the material and the devastating conditions it causes. Campaign group, Action Meso, is uniting those impacted by mesothelioma – an incurable but preventable cancer caused by asbestos – to give them …

Read MoreFighting back against asbestos-related cancer

scientist 2141259 1920 e1607618409539

Don’t become an asbestos-related death statistic

Anyone who follows our activities at Acorn will know that we are dedicated to raising awareness about the dangers posed by asbestosis. We regularly release informative podcasts, blogs and have produced a number one best-selling book called Asbestos The Dark Arts to show businesses and individuals why it is so important to manage their asbestos …

Read MoreDon’t become an asbestos-related death statistic

birthday 1835443 1920

From small Acorns grow great asbestos management companies

Despite all the challenges that 2020 has thrown at us we are pleased to be ending the year on a high. It is with great pleasure that we can say this month Acorn Analytical Services has celebrated its 20th anniversary. The business first set down roots in the north of England two decades ago and …

Read MoreFrom small Acorns grow great asbestos management companies

WP 6441 Original 39554 scaled e1606141093410

Celebrate Your Unique Talent

Did you know every year November 24th is observed as Celebrate Your Unique Talent Day? No matter how unique or different your talent is, today is the day that you are encouraged to share it with others. Here at Acorn we aren’t shy about our talent. We are the leading experts when it comes to …

Read MoreCelebrate Your Unique Talent

JG Brum Small

Acorn Opens New Birmingham office!

We have some exciting news… We have expanded with the opening of a new Birmingham office! The new office is located on Bristol Road South and will be led by Joe Gore (pictured) and staffed by people from the Birmingham area. Not only will this new office help us to better service our existing clients …

Read MoreAcorn Opens New Birmingham office!