Commercial Asbestos Surveyors

Commercial Asbestos Surveys for Businesses Across the UK

Asbestos Surveyors LeedsOur team of expert commercial asbestos surveyors operate nationwide and consult on commercial  projects across the UK including London, Manchester, Birmingham, Leeds, Bristol and Harrogate. We offer advice on corporate policy when undertaking asbestos surveys and assisting in preparation of your Asbestos Management Plan. It is this plan which is your legal requirement under the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012.

Bradley-Mason’s asbestos surveyors can undertake asbestos surveys of single or multi-site portfolios and manage the information online. Recent examples of a quick turnaround service include a portfolio of 95 sites for O2 Nationwide which were delivered within 3 weeks of instruction. Our client was very pleased with our performance and Galliford Try, the lead contractor on the project stated – “Our experience with Bradley-Mason was one of professionalism, enthusiasm and thoroughly good service. The team are a genuine pleasure to deal with”

 

Asbestos Surveys LeedsOur asbestos surveyors aim to offer added value to an asbestos survey by combining this with other services, e.g. an acquisition report or compliance audit. This offers savings in time and money and allows efficient implementation of any required works. By way of example we regularly undertake a Refurbishment survey as part of a retail project or store closure.

We act as asbestos surveyors for a wide variety of corporate clients, providing high quality, in depth asbestos consultancy services. Some of our past clients include Pizza Hut, KFC, ABB, Dixons Retail Ltd, Vodafone, O2, TK Maxx, Thorntons Plc and National Express Group Plc.
Whether you are in London, Manchester, Harrogate or Bristol, asbestos surveyors don’t come more qualified than those who work for Bradley-Mason. We can carry out surveys for any type of buildings, ranging from large tower blocks to small offices. With branches across the UK, Bradley-Mason can quickly respond to any urgent asbestos surveying requests.

If would like further information about the commercial asbestos surveys offered by our expert team, please feel free to contact us on 01423 534 604 or email us.

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When is a Commercial Asbestos Survey needed?

An asbestos management survey has to be in place for any non-domestic property built before 2000. This includes commercial office and retail space as well as industrial premises. If the property has any history of containing asbestos, the survey has to be re-inspected on a regular basis (typically once a year) and any recommendations actioned accordingly.

In addition, any commercial property built before 2000 that is earmarked for refurbishment or demolition requires a separate refurbishment and demolition survey. These are the regulations stipulated by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

At Bradley-Mason LLP, we have specialist commercial asbestos surveyors to deal with all types of commercial properties that may be suffering from ACM problems. Depending on various factors, including age and type of building, access and visibility issues, different types of survey may be suitable.

Management Survey (formerly Type 2 Asbestos Survey)

Minimally intrusive, this identifies and locates the presence of ACMs in a commercial building at the most basic level. It is used to assess the condition of ACMs and provides a risk assessment for any disturbance.

Refurbishment & Demolition Surveys (formerly Type 3 Asbestos Survey)

We use a trusted partner business to provide this service, we will happily advise you on this.

Before any work can take place to refurbish or demolish the building, a refurbishment and demolition survey needs to be completed. Used to identify and locate all ACMs in the property, with full access needed for inspection, this type of survey is intrusive and may cause damage.

Bradley-Mason’s team of expert surveyors and building consultants are experienced in dealing with commercial asbestos surveys for any type of commercial property – from small office buildings to large tower blocks. With regional offices across the UK, we can respond quickly to any urgent commercial asbestos survey enquiry. Management Surveys can be carried out by Bradley-Mason’s in-house team while we recommend a specialist firm to deal specifically with Demolition Surveys.

bradley-mason locations

We have worked with a large number of corporate clients, among them Pizza Hut, Thorntons, ABB Group, KFC, Vodafone, Dixons Retail Group, O2, TK Maxx and National Express Group.

Depending on client requirements, we can combine commercial asbestos surveys with other building services, such as acquisition reports or compliance audits. We routinely complete a refurbishment survey as part of a retail project or store closure.

Bradley-Mason LLP can also offer guidance on corporate policy to prepare your Asbestos Management Plan, as required by the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012.

Areas We Serve

From our Head Office in Harrogate, North Yorkshire, Bradley-Mason LLP operate on a nationwide basis, with commercial clients across London, Bristol, Manchester, Sheffield and Northern Ireland. Our specialist team of project managers and building surveyors brings a ‘hands on’ approach to every project, working with each individual client to ensure complete satisfaction.

Get In Touch

Contact Bradley-Mason LLP for the full range of commercial building consultancy and project management services. If you would like to discuss how our commercial asbestos surveys can help deal with your specific commercial property concerns, please call 01423 534604 or contact our Head Office.

 

Frequently Asked Questions


What is Asbestos?

Asbestos refers to a set of naturally-occurring fibrous minerals that were particularly prevalent in many kinds of construction between the 1950s and 1980s.

These minerals are heat and chemical resistant, non-flammable and strong, making them popular for use in insulation, fireproofing and reinforcing other components such as concrete and plastics.

In the 1970s, loose asbestos fibres were linked to several severe and fatal lung diseases resulting in them being phased out of use through the 1980s in most applications.

Why is it dangerous?

Asbestos fibres can break down to microscopic airborne particles, that become very easy to inhale, even when wearing personal protective equipment. These particles stick to the lining of the lungs and can cause respiratory problems, even years after exposure.

It’s important to note that asbestos only poses a significant risk when it becomes damaged and fibreas become loose.

Asbestos materials that are properly maintained are not a danger, and only pose a significant risk when they are damaged or disturbed and fibres are released into the air and subsequently inhaled.

It is recommended that, if it is undamaged and unlikely to be disturbed, material containing asbestos should be left in place, if necessary sealing it with paint or plastic film.

What does it look like / how can I tell if my commercial property has asbestos, and what to do

Any industrial, commercial or domestic premises built before 2000 may contain asbestos.

Some asbestos is noticeable, or easily identified. Commonly found in:

Fire blankets, AIB panels, pipe lagging, insulation. Also artex

However this list is not exhaustive and it can be hard to tell what is an asbestossy material. Exercise caution.

floor tiles, pipe lagging, textured paints (Artex), internal partitions, central heating systems, roofs, gutters, rainwater downpipes, cement cladding, fire protection to structural steelwork, fuse boxes, bitumen products and many, many more.

The important thing is to stop working, and carry out a risk assessment. You must undertake a risk assessment before conducting any work on asbestos materials, to determine if the work should be conducted by a licences asbestos contractor. You need information, instruction and training to deal with asbestos.

What is the “duty to manage” asbestos?

The duty to manage asbestos is a legal requirement under the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 (Regulation 4). It applies to the owners and occupiers of commercial premises (such as shops, offices, industrial units etc) who have responsibility for maintenance and repair activities. In addition to these responsibilities, they also have a duty to assess the presence and condition of any asbestos-containing materials. If asbestos is present, or is presumed to be present, then it must be managed appropriately. The duty also applies to the shared parts of some domestic premises.

What is an asbestos survey?

Provides accurate information about the location, type and amount of asbestos and asbestos containing materials (ACMs) in the premises. The survey will involve sampling and analysis to determine the presence and significance of ACMs in your premises.

The report will tell you where any ACMs are in the building, the kind of asbestos they contain and the condition of the materials, to determine the level of risk.

Are they all the same?

The first and most common is the asbestos management survey. This is carried out to identify asbestos, carry out a material risk assessment for each positive occurrence, complete a priority assessment if required and produce an asbestos register in an easy to read format thus helping the duty holder to fulfil their duties.

The second type is the pre-demolition survey which is done in order to identify any asbestos containing materials so that they may be removed prior to the building being demolished.

There is a variation of the pre-demolition survey and this is called a refurbishment survey.  As the name suggests this is done to a building or specific area of a building prior to any works being undertaken. This is so that any effected asbestos can be removed.

No, there are three different types of Asbestos Survey:

  • Asbestos Management Survey (formally type 1 and type 2 asbestos survey) – Its purpose is to locate as far as reasonably practicable, the presence and extent of any suspect ACMs in the building.
  • Pre-Refurbishment Asbestos Survey (formally type 3 asbestos survey) – A pre-refurbishment asbestos survey is needed before any refurbishment or demolition work is carried out.
  • Pre-Demolition Asbestos Survey (formally type 3 asbestos survey) – A pre-demolition asbestos survey is needed before any demolition work is carried out.

The type of Asbestos Survey most appropriate will be dependent on client/property specific requirements and will be established during the survey planning phase.

Note – The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 requires that the condition of asbestos-based products needs to be re-inspected regularly and records updated accordingly. The frequency of the asbestos inspection regime must not exceed 12 months.

Why do I need a survey?

All commercial sites must be deemed safe for employees, visitors and the general public. Each premises will have a named person who is responsisble for managing this safety, referred to as the dutyholder.

This includes being aware of any risks on the premises, including the presence of asbestos. Once identified, it is the dutyholder’s (job) to ensure ongoing safety to everyone entering the premises.

The main reason you need an Asbestos Survey is to protect any person, especially workmen, from accidentally exposing themselves and others to asbestos fibres.

If your building was constructed or altered prior to 2000, your building may contain one or more of some 3000 products manufactured that contain asbestos and therefore you will need a survey.

Within the Control of Asbestos Regulations (CAR) 2012 it clearly creates a “Duty to manage asbestos” and to manage asbestos you need to know you have got it.  The asbestos survey identifies asbestos and assists the duty holder in the compilation of the management plan.

If you allow persons to disturb asbestos in your property unknowingly you are breaking the law as well as putting the health of those persons and your employees at risk.

There are many documented instances of builders, plumbers and electricians drilling through innocuous panels, or cutting into pipe insulation, only to discover later that a potentially lethal mistake has been made.

The ‘Duty to Manage’ (Regulation 4) in the Control of Asbestos Regulations (CAR) 2012, is specifically designed to tighten up the law to reduce the risk from asbestos materials present in buildings.

The reason why this is done is to help prevent the loss of lives through lack of knowledge on the whereabouts and condition of asbestos-containing materials.

And then what?

After the survey results, you can prepare an asbestos risk register

What is the asbestos risk register?

Important log of how you are managing the asbestos (or presumed asbestos) on your premises.

or presumed to be, in your buildings. This management plan must contain current information about the presence and condition of any asbestos in the building. The asbestos risk register will therefore need to be updated on a regular basis (at least once a year). To do this you should make:

  • regular inspections to check the current condition of asbestos materials
  • deletions to the register when any asbestos is removed
  • additions to the register when new areas are surveyed and asbestos is located
  • changes to the register (at any time asbestos-containing materials are found to have deteriorated)

The risk register can be kept as a paper or electronic record and it is very important that this is kept up to date and easily accessible. Paper copies may be easier to pass on to visiting maintenance workers, who will need them to know the location and condition of any asbestos before they start work. Electronic copies are easier to update and are probably better suited for people responsible for large numbers of properties or bigger premises.

What is the control limit?

The control limit refers to the concentration of asbestos fibres in any localised atmosphere, measured and averaged over a continuous period of four hours, in accordance with the 1997 World Health Organisation’s recommended method. At the moment, the control limit is 0.1 asbestos fibres per cubic centimetre of air (0.1 f/cm3). The control limit is not a ‘safe’ level and work activities involving asbestos should be designed to be as far below the control limit as possible. HSE has progressively tightened the control limit since 1987.

Work involving some lower risk asbestos-containing materials (eg asbestos cement products and textured decorative coatings, among others) can be carried out if a risk assessment demonstrates that the control limit will not be exceeded and that any exposure to asbestos is expected to be ‘sporadic and of low intensity’. The control limit for this type of non-licensed work is 0.6 asbestos fibres per cubic centimetre of air (0.6 f/cm3), measured over a ten-minute period. Any work which is likely to result in exposures at or above this level cannot be considered to be sporadic and of low intensity and should therefore only be carried out by a licensed contractor.

What if I don’t have a survey carried out?

You can just assume the worst and take steps to apply full precautions for potentially ACMs. It’s less troublesome and more proportional to have an asbestos survey carried out so you don’t go overboard. The person responsible for the commercial premises much arrange a survey if ACMs are suspected.

If you are the duty holder for a commercial property and you do not have an asbestos survey, you are liable to prosecution.

Failure to comply with the new asbestos regulations may also mean that a prohibition notice is placed on your buildings – effectively closing you down until your workplace is confirmed safe.

How much will a survey cost?

The cost of an asbestos survey will depend on the size and age of your building, however we always aim to deliver maximum value by combining an asbestos survey with another service where possible. This saves you money, time and offers better efficiency in large projects where several reports can be produced and implemented in a smaller time frame.

What’s an asbestos management plan?

This is usually achieved by producing an asbestos management plan.

The asbestos management plan is a formal record of the state of all known asbestos on a site, with both control measures to eliminate or reduce the risk from each occurrence, and perhaps a longer-term plan to remove the risk altogether, by having the asbestos removed in a properly-controlled manner.

Being able to demonstrate that you know and can quantify your risks with regard to asbestos could reduce current and future costs and liabilities.

Ultimately, by removing the asbestos from a premises, you could increase its value (by removing the liability associated with its presence).

Can I get rid of the asbestos in my building?

Removal of high-risk ACMs should only be done by a licensed contractor. These include asbestos insulation boards, panels and lagging, which are more likely to release fibres into the air than asbestos cement or vinyl floor tiles for example.

There are strict guidelines for handling asbestos waste. It must be clearly labelled, and contained in double-wrapped packaging to ensure no fibres are released in transit. Typically this involves a red inner bag that id marked with asbestos warning labels, and a transparent outer bag with asbestos warning labels. Asbestos materials should not be broken down into smaller pieces for disposal. They should be carefully transported to a licensed disposal site (contact your local authority).

It is recommended that, if it is undamaged and unlikely to be disturbed, material containing asbestos should be left in place, if necessary sealing it with paint or plastic film.

Asbestos in schools


What is an asbestos survey?

An Asbestos Management Survey is an effective way to help you manage asbestos in your premises by providing accurate information about the location, amount and type of any asbestos-containing materials (ACMs).

What is the asbestos register?

The Asbestos Register is a document that lists all identified (or presumed) asbestos in a workplace. The Asbestos Register must record any asbestos or asbestos containing materials (ACM) that has been identified or is likely to be present at the workplace from time to time.

Just how dangerous is asbestos? A Asbestos is a mineral substance that can split into many tiny fibres. When present in the air, these fibres can be inhaled into the lungs where they may lodge. If sufficient fibres are inhaled they can lead to diseases such as asbestosis, lung cancer and another type of cancer called mesothelioma. Crocidolite (blue asbestos) and amosite (brown asbestos) pose a greater risk than chrysotile (white asbestos), which is the most common type of asbestos found in buildings. The exposures encountered by members of the general public outdoors or in their homes are very low and unlikely to present any risk. Nevertheless, it is wise to take precautions if you are handling any substance you suspect may contain asbestos.