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					                              Environment, Sustainability and Community Safety Executive Group
                                                                                       11 June 2002

                                                                              Item 3 – Main Report



        SHORT LIFE WORKING GROUP ON ASBESTOS - DRAFT FINAL REPORT


                                             MAIN REPORT



 The work of the COSLA Short Life Working Group on Asbestos (SLWG) has assembled some
 extremely interesting information on all aspects of asbestos and the negative effect that this
 material can have on the lives of thousands of people. The project also addressed a wide range
 of asbestos management issues which include statutory duties, pressure on Local Authority
 resources and the advantages of a collaborative approach in appropriate areas, one example is
 asbestos awareness training. The working group have included a comprehensive list of
 recommendations. These are included in each section of the report. recommendations are also
 set out in a separate section for quick access. A number of the key points of the SLWG findings
 are included in this summary.

  In addition to the CAWR 2002, amendments to European Council Directive 83/447/EEC on the
     protection of workers from the risks related to exposure to asbestos at work will also help to
     secure a safer environment. It should be recognised, however, that these measures impose
     an increased burden upon Local Authorities in relation to the responsibility for managing
     asbestos in buildings.

 Financial burden
  One of the most significant findings of the working group on asbestos was that there is no
    available method of accurately calculating the total asbestos associated costs imposed on
    Local Authorities in Scotland.

  A regular topic of discussion within the working group was the limited information available on
    Local Authority asbestos-related expenditure.

  Councils can identify the costs of asbestos management and asbestos removal. They do not,
    however, systematically record other asbestos-related expenditure. This may include
    replacement costs, waste removal costs, decanting of pupils and teachers to alternative place
    of learning, decanting of tenants, loss of revenue to Council through closure of leisure
    facilities caused by an asbestos incident or removal project.

  There are the significant staff costs incurred through the utilisation of employees in various
    aspects of asbestos management.

     The working group made a number of recommendations on asbestos expenditure, recording
      methods and the need for additional funding to safely manage asbestos in Council premises.


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           The working group consider that a Local Authority asbestos consortium could provide
            benefits in respect of environmental safety, best practice and most cost-effective methods of
            asbestos management.

           The working group were satisfied that there is a great deal experience and knowledge of
            asbestos management issues within COSLA member Councils. This expertise could be
            utilised to bring benefits to all Local Authorities.

       The working group considered that It is important to provide a more accurate assessment of
        the financial burden placed on Councils in Scotland by the presence of asbestos in Local
        Authority premises.

             The costs of all asbestos-related work should be clearly identified and information easily
              extracted from capital contracts or single priced specification work.

             The Highland Council methodology should be considered as providing a model which can
              be developed to allow local government in Scotland to assess the financial burden placed
              on Local Authority budgets through the presence of asbestos in council premises.

             Recording methods should include timescales and degree of risk as they apply to individual
              asbestos projects with the Local Authority.

Asbestos in Schools
 Recent experience shows that there has been significant expenditure imposed on Councils
   throughout Scotland through the presence of asbestos in education premises (mainly schools).

       A recent study carried out by one Local Authority in Scotland found that over 90 per cent of the
        costs and 175 out of the 255 entries made were associated with asbestos-related work,
        including surveys, sealing and removal work carried out in schools and other educational
        establishments.

       The costs of removing damaged asbestos in ten schools ranged from £15,000 in the lowest
        example given to £3 million in the highest. Expenditure on these ten asbestos removal projects
        adds up to just under £8 million.

       The installation of new computer wiring, ongoing refurbishment and alterations contribute to
        the number of in asbestos incidents in schools.

       The presence of asbestos in schools should remain a high priority concern for Local
        Authorities in Scotland. COSLA may wish to consider an approach to the Scottish Executive in
        order to secure a discussion on the specific problems associated with the presence of
        asbestos in education premises (mainly schools).

Asbestos management
 It is essential that Local Authorities recognise the importance of developing a sound Corporate
   Policy for the management of asbestos containing materials (ACMs) in premises for which
   Councils are responsible, whether owned, leased or under local Council management.

       In respect of the duties under CAWR 2002 and other legislation including the Health and
        Safety at Work, etc, Act 1974 Local Authorities must consider the health & safety of tenants,
        employees, contractors, visitors, customers and members of the public within an effective
        asbestos management policy.

       Effective asbestos management policies must aim to ensure that the presence of asbestos
        does not present an exposure risk to any person. Procedures should be developed to


                                                                                                         2
    encourage an planned approach to asbestos management. Policies must include emergency
    plans for efffective response to unexpected asbestos exposures.

   The Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations 2002 place an explicit duty on people in control
    of buildings to keep an up to date record of the location and condition of asbestos containing
    materials and suspected ACMs.

   An asbestos register is a record of an asbestos containing material (ACM). There are no set
    criteria for creating an asbestos register but it should provide information which is readily
    available to maintenance workers and contractors. This is crucial to the effective management
    of asbestos in any building.

   The working group also examined the most appropriate method of dealing with asbestos
    containing textured coating materials which are applied to walls and ceilings. This is a
    particular problem associated with Local Authority housing. Detailed information and
    recommendations on this subject are included in the report.

   The working group also examined all aspects of surveying for asbestos-containing materials in
    Council premises, the duty to maintain an asbestos register and the need to monitor the
    condition of asbestos in situ.

Training
 The working group concluded that asbestos awareness training and guidance should be
   provided to all Local Authority staff who may be liable to come into contact with asbestos
   during the course of their employment. This would include Council employees who are
   responsible for the day to day management of Council properties. They will also require
   knowledge on the working methods of contractors.

   The working group concluded that a comprehensive, professionally developed and delivered
    programme of asbestos awareness, asbestos working and asbestos management training
    could be designed to further reduce the number of people who contract a fatal asbestos
    related disease. These improvements could be achieved through co-ordinated cross-council
    participation including the exchange of information and shared experience.

   The working group discussed the development of training focussed asbestos management
    policies taken forward through an adequately resourced training programme could assist in
    achieving a reduction in the number of asbestos-related accidents, incidents and emergencies
    occurring within the Local Authority sector. This could be facilitated through the promotion of a
    planned approach to asbestos management in buildings through the participation of
    maintenance workers, janitors, head teachers, unit managers, safety representatives and other
    appropriate personnel in a suitable Local Authority led training programme.

   The working group discussed a more detailed training programme which could be designed to
    meet the needs of electricians, plumbers, joiners and other maintenance workers who because
    of the nature of the functions that they perform at work are more likely to disturb asbestos-
    containing materials (ACMs) at work. This more advanced training could include practical, on
    the job, tuition. This would include training in the use of hand tools, power tools and all aspects
    personal protective equipment (how to use properly and why).

   The working group recommend the involvement of trade unions in all stages of asbestos-
    related training.

   The working group focussed on the training needs of young workers and apprentices.

   The merits of a college-based training module to meet the needs of workers who are likely to
    disturb ACMs in their occupation was discussed by the working group

                                                                                                     3
   The working group discussed accreditation to EN 45004 for organisations undertaking
    asbestos surveys will be available from UKAS. Accreditation to ISO 17025 for organisations
    sampling and/or analysing asbestos containing materials is also currently available from
    UKAS. There are no barriers to appropriate Local Authority employees achieving any of these
    required accreditation standards.

   In addition to the technically based asbestos training the working group considered
    compensation, advocacy and other support services. This could include training module
    designed to meet the specific needs of asbestos victims, their families and carers. Welfare
    rights, civil compensation and access to information could be greatly improved and extended
    through training aimed at appropriate Local Authority employees, Law Centres, Citizens Advice
    Bureaux and Trade Unions.

   The working group recognised that Local Authorities are responsible for a significant proportion
    of building contracts, maintenance work, refurbishment, demolition carried out in Scotland. A
    training programme could assist in achieving a tangible reduction in the numbers exposed to
    asbestos in the course of this work.

Matters so included in the SLWG report are the appointment of contractors. There is a
comprehensive section of the report covering this topic and making a series of recommendations.
There are a number appendices which contain relevant information on the legal and technical
aspects of asbestos. Also included, in full, is the Highland Council report which has been very
influential in the direction at certain points in the project.




                                                                                                  4
                                               INTRODUCTION
    The Short Life Working Group on Asbestos (SLWG) was established at the Leaders Meeting on 27
    April 2001 in Clydebank. The main reasons for establishing the working group were the need for a
    consistent approach and pursuit of joint interests by local authorities in managing the legacy of
    asbestos in Scotland. An additional concern was the need to address how councils can meet the
    expenditure required for asbestos-related tasks.
      The SLWG is led and resourced by West Dunbartonshire Council. Its terms of reference and an
       initial work plan were adopted at the inaugural meeting on 23 August 2001 in Edinburgh. The
                   main aspects of the working group’s remit can be summarised as being;
       To consider the ill health, social and economic legacy of asbestos use in Scotland and local
                    government’s involvement in tackling problems arising from asbestos use.
     To review arrangements and consider local authority best practice in asbestos related matters.
     To make the case for the health care, social and economic burdens of asbestos to be
        adequately met through external funding from the Scottish Executive and (or) other sources as
        relevant.
    
       The working group has attempted to identify best practice in the appointment of contractors.
    This includes assessing the health and safety standards of contractors who apply to carry out
    asbestos-related work for local authorities, and checking that the appropriate licence (if required) is
    held for the category of work being carried out. Scrutiny of contractor-related issues should help to
    provide a more consistent set of standards and costs in council contracts.

    Asbestos will remain a significant problem for local authorities in Scotland, through its impact on
    the health of our citizens, the legal duties in managing asbestos in Council properties, and the
    additional financial burden placed on councils by stricter asbestos regulations. For these reasons
    the working group acknowledge the need for a sustained collaborative response from Local
    Authorities to asbestos-related matters.

    The working group discussed the merits of a organising a Local Authority asbestos conference on
    the roles and responsibilities of Councils. A conference would allow COSLA to raise the profile of
    the asbestos issue and highlight the pressure placed on resources by the presence of asbestos

    The working group consulted a number of organisations during the course of the project. These
    included the Public Health Institute of Scotland (PHIS), the Scottish Centre for Infections and
    Environmental Health (SCIEH), Common Services Agency; Information and Statistics Division
    (ISD); Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC), Health and Environment Department, General
    Municipal and Boilermakers (GMB); Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE), University
    of Stirling; Occupational & Environmental Health Research Group; Welfare Rights Representation
    Unit, West Dunbartonshire Council;




                                                                                                         5
                                  ASBESTOS: Research and Epidemiology

Research Findings
Asbestos related deaths in this country could exceed 250,000 over the next 25 years according to
research led by Dr. Julian Peto, Professor of Epidemiology at London University. A recent paper
predicted that male mesothelioma deaths in Western Europe will increase from 5,000 per year in
1998 to a figure of around 9,000 per year by the year 2018.1 Peto et al indicate that those most in
danger will include men born around 1945-50 and that one in 150 of all men born in these years
will eventually die of mesothelioma. It is also estimated that for every asbestos-induced
mesothelioma death, there will be two asbestos-induced lung cancer deaths. The risk to men born
since 1955 is not yet clear. The problem is that plumbers, carpenters, electricians and others
working on buildings containing asbestos, those involved in renovation asbestos removal personnel
and those workers involved in demolition may still be experiencing heavy exposures to asbestos
dust.2

It is estimated that for men born in the 1940‟s, those most at risk to industrial exposure,
Mesothelioma may account for 1% of all deaths. This death toll is expected to rise steadily from
exposure to asbestos which occurred in the 1960s and 1970s. The victims are almost exclusively
working class men and women. Research carried out by the GMB trade union found that of the
590 members of their killed through work-related deaths between 1981 and 1995, 266 (45%) died
as a result of being exposed to asbestos dust in the workplace.3 According to another report,
every day eleven people die in the UK due to working with asbestos4

Every year in the UK 4,500 people die from asbestos-related diseases, and by 2020, it has been
estimated that the substance will be responsible for over 10,000 deaths a year. According to a
report published by the Trades Union Congress (TUC) in the four years between 1997 until 1991
18,000 people, more than the 14,000 killed on the roads have died in Britain as a result of working
with asbestos.

Most fatalities occur in areas traditionally associated with shipbuilding, manufacturing, railway
engineering, and dockyards. No part of the UK is immune from the legacy of asbestos.

Deaths in each region of Great Britain between 1997 and 2001

Scotland 1800
Wales 564
South West England 2040
Greater London 1800
South East England 4596
East Anglia 1488
Midlands 2352
Yorkshire and Humberside 1632
North West 1872
Northern England 1344


Similarly, no part of Scotland is immune from the legacy of asbestos. In the report published in
April 2001 Mapping the misery of asbestos in Scotland, the Scottish Trades union Congress
(STUC) ranked the 15 hardest hit Local Authorities in Scotland by the death rate per million people
to show where the asbestos legacy is hitting the hardest.


1
    Peto et al, The European mesothelioma epidemic, British Journal of Cancer, volume 79, pages 666-672.
2
    Hazards, issue 65, 1999.
3
    GMB, 1995, Safety Representatives Guide, Preventing Exposure to Asbestos, page 15.
4
    Labour Research, April 1997, Volume 86, Number 4, page 7.

                                                                                                           6
   1)         West Dunbartonshire 108 deaths
   2)         Renfrewshire              144 deaths
   3)         Inverclyde                  60 deaths
   4)         Argyll and Bute             60 deaths
   5)         Moray                       48 deaths
   6)         East Lothian                60 deaths
   7)         South Lanarkshire         156 deaths
   8)         Dundee City                 72 deaths
   9)         North Lanarkshire         144 deaths
   10)        North Ayrshire       60 deaths
   11) =      Glasgow City        252 deaths
              Highland                    84 deaths
   12)        East Ayrshire               48 deaths
   13)        Fife                      132 deaths
   14)        South Ayrshire              36 deaths

This information indicates that problems associated with asbestos are not confined to the West of
Scotland.




                                                                                                    7
ASBESTOS: a financial burden on local government

 One of the most significant findings of the working group on asbestos was that there is no
 currently available method of accurately calculating total asbestos associated costs imposed on
 Local Authorities in Scotland. A recurring topic of discussion within the working group was the
 limited information available on Local Authority asbestos-related expenditure. In the main,
 Councils can identify the costs of asbestos management and asbestos removal. Councils do not,
 however, systematically record other asbestos-related expenditure. This may include
 replacement costs, waste removal costs, decanting of pupils and teachers to alternative place of
 learning, decanting of tenants, loss of revenue to Council through closure of facilities caused by
 an asbestos incident or removal project; there are also the significant staff costs incurred through
 the utilisation of employees in various aspects of asbestos management.

 It is important that steps are taken to provide a more accurate view of the financial burden placed
 on local government in Scotland by the presence of asbestos in Local Authority premises. It is
 estimated by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) that throughout the UK 4.4 million buildings
 still contain asbestos, of these, nearly 2 million are in the non-domestic sector. It is clear from the
 significant amount of information available to the working group that the incoming Control of
 Asbestos at Work Regulations 2002 (CAWR) and supporting Approved Codes of Practice
 (AcoPs: L27 & L28) will have a significant impact on the management of asbestos in buildings.

Estimates of the initial costs of compliance with CAWR 2002 can be made based on figures
included in the Health and Safety Commission consultative document. The average initial costs of
compliance indicated by HSE for a school are £3,360. The average initial costs of compliance
indicated by HSE for a public building are £1,409.
 An ad hoc calculation for two categories of premises based on HSE figures for one Council is set
out below.

Schools:                        188 x £3,360          £631,680
Public Buildings :              700 x £1,409                £986,300
Total initial costs of compliance:                          £1,617,980

Councils, in their various roles and capacities will have a greater degree of responsibility and
statutory duty imposed upon them. HSE continues to emphasise the health risk to those in
maintenance and building related trades. Local Authorities must also consider the general public,
teachers, pupils as well as workers actually engaged in maintenance, alteration and refurbishment.

 Councils should record an accurate and detailed register of total expenditure incurred on
 asbestos surveying, management and removal and all other associated costs. This would include
 a full record of replacement costs. One of the most common examples of this is the removal of
 damaged asbestos containing ceiling tiles. If a ceiling is to be removed due to unsafe asbestos
 not only the removal associated costs but also the replacement costs should be quantified and
 recorded. If the original work carried out is required because of unsafe asbestos, replacement
 costs (new ceiling, new lighting, decoration costs, staff time etc.) and would not be required if the
 asbestos problem was not present. An accurate and detailed Council wide register of asbestos-
 related expenditure could provide Local Authorities with information on total spending on
 asbestos.

 Removal of asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) from a housing project was carried out in one
 Council operating a planned approach. This required liaison with tenants and other measures to
 be taken. A policy of providing tenants with full information assisted in the smooth running of the
 operation. The working group examined the methods employed by West Lothian Council in two
 asbestos removal contracts. These examples raised issues of best practice in asbestos removal
 by looking at case studies of actual situations which had been managed by the Council. A major
 asbestos removal operation in a large number of council houses required the decanting of
 tenants and other measures to be taken. In this project, a significant proportion of the total costs

                                                                                                      8
(£400,000) was spent on decanting of tenants, providing information and on additional insurance
premiums. It was fully explained to them at local meetings organised by the Council why they
had to be decanted from their homes and why other safety measures were put in place. Despite
the inconvenience caused the arrangements were widely accepted by those affected. A well-
produced information leaflet was distributed to tenants prior to the work commencing. This
experience indicated that a policy of openness and providing full information to tenants in the
housing project had proven to be successful in reassuring the tenants that the best available
methods were in operation and that community safety was the key factor considered by the Local
Authority during what was undoubtedly a stressful time.

An asbestos removal operation within a community theatre had its own unique set of problems
and a comparison was made between the two projects. In addition to the costs associated with
asbestos management and removal there was also the issue of lost revenue due to closure of
the theatre during the long period required to safely remove asbestos dust in very difficult
circumstances exacerbated by the location of the hazardous material.

The working group also examined two asbestos removal operations which took place within
another Council. The first example was an observation of an emergency (unplanned) asbestos
removal operation in a swimming pool. This resulted from the avoidable actions of an
unsupervised (and untrained) electrician. The other project was the planned replacement of
lighting in a leisure centre. The project at the leisure centre required the removal of an asbestos
ceiling and its reinstatement. This work was carried out during a planned closure of the centre
the ceilings were removed, replaced and the lights renewed. These projects illustrated the
increased costs and timescales associated with unplanned (emergency) asbestos removal
operations compared to pre-planned projects.

A detailed discussion of the methodology and content of the Highland Council asbestos report
took place. It was agreed that this type of recording system could be developed as a general
model of quantifying total costs incurred to Local Authorities through asbestos
surveying/removal/management. The detail contained in the Highland Council asbestos report
would tend to suggest that asbestos in schools should remain a priority for Local Authorities in
Scotland.

Discussion took place around the costs of using external consultants in asbestos work. It was
agreed that local authorities should record and quantify the total actual costs involved with
asbestos contracts. The model utilised by Highland Council appears to provide a starting point
for the development of a future method of recording how much the material, asbestos is costing
councils in Scotland.

It was fortunate during the work of the COSLA Short Life Working Group on asbestos that the
work of an officer in Highland Council was made available. This information included asbestos
survey costs, removal costs and some other costs associated with asbestos management,
including training costs. All of the projects included in the „asbestos diary‟ were in schools
libraries, leisure facilities and other Council premises. A high percentage (93%) of work was
carried out in schools and other educational premises. The information from Highland Council is
extremely helpful but it does not provide costing for all asbestos projects carried out by the
Council.

The contents of the Highland Council asbestos report and information from other Local
Authorities would tend to confirm that asbestos in schools should remain a priority for Councils in
Scotland because of the significant amount of asbestos-related work which is required to be
carried out on a regular basis in education premises.

Recovery of Costs
The Short Life Working Group on Asbestos carried out a detailed examination of product liability
and the legal implications. West Lothian Council elected members and Council Officers assisted

                                                                                                      9
 throughout this process. The subject of legal action against companies who had been involved in
 contracts which had resulted in asbestos containing materials (ACMs) being used within the
 structures of council-owned properties was discussed. A comprehensive paper was submitted to
 the working group on legal liabilities as they arise under common law, legislation and contractual
 agreements. General consensus concluded that pursuance of companies in order to recover
 what were in fact financial losses did not fit in favourably with legal precedent and that it would
 not be helpful for local Authorities to pursue this as a general policy. On a cost benefit analysis,
 the probable financial returns to councils would not be sufficient to justify the efforts required in
 following this path. The matter of taking action now against a solvent company, which remained
 in existence, was agreed to be different from identifying an insurance liability from decades past.
 It was felt, however, that the option of litigation would only apply in a very limited set of
 circumstances. The working group foresaw little opportunity of recovering significant sums, cost
 effectively, from the manufacturers and suppliers of asbestos, or any professional indemnity
 insurers on a systematic basis.

 Consortium
 The working group discussed the costs of using external consultants in asbestos work. It was
 noted that there were a number of examples of unsatisfactory outcomes in relation to the working
 practices of consultants in asbestos contracts. The working group considered that there could be
 a strategy for reducing costs through the shared experience of Councils. A Local Authority
 consortium dealing with asbestos issues including training and the exchange of information could
 provide a vehicle which could facilitate this initiative. It was agreed that there are employees who
 possess significant expertise and experience within Local Authorities who could be utilised in
 asbestos management matters. The further development of Local Authority staff may require
 training to accredited standards in certain functions. The consortium option may provide benefits
 in respect of environmental safety, best practice and most cost-effective methods in certain areas
 of asbestos management. Economies of scale, which can be realised, and initiatives which avoid
 the duplication of resources across councils would be of universal benefit to participating
 authorities. Insurance implications of consortium working may require further examination.

 CAWR 2002
 CAWR 2002 will create an explicit duty to assess and manage the risks from asbestos. Local
 Authorities must take reasonable steps to determine the location of materials likely to contain
 asbestos. The person or persons responsible for surveying the premises have to use a high level
 of subjective assessment, and need adequate training, experience and time to carry out the
 survey. It is important that procedures used for conducting the survey, assessing and
 documenting the findings are clearly recorded. Organisations offering an asbestos survey
 service to Local Authorities should be able to comply with the standard set out in EN 45004
 (General criteria for the operation of various types of bodies performing inspection).
 Accreditation to EN 45004 for organisations undertaking asbestos surveys will be available from
 UKAS. Accreditation to ISO 17025 for organisations sampling and/or analysing asbestos
 containing materials is also currently available from UKAS United kingdom Accreditation
 Service). There are no barriers to appropriate council employees achieving any of these required
 accreditation standards. It should be established whether Council employees can, on some
 occasions, provide a safer, more flexible and cost effective alternative to consultants.

Recommendations
1) The HSE have recently published an Incident Cost Calculator proforma sheet (please refer to
   INDG 355 “Reduce Risks – cut costs, the real cost of accidents at work” (ISBN 0 7176 2337 8)
   from HSE Books). Completion of this form following any asbestos incident would provide an
   estimate of direct/incidental costs and staff time spent dealing with the outcomes of an
   asbestos event. A copy of completed sheets should be forwarded to the individual Local
   Authority‟s Asbestos Coordinator for recording purposes.

2) The costs of all asbestos-related work should be clearly identified and information easily
   extracted from capital contracts or single priced specification work. A standard proforma needs

                                                                                                   10
   to be developed for completion by Contract Administrators and forwarding to the Council‟s
   Asbestos Coordinator for recording purposes.

3) Individual local authorities should consider using The Highland Council „asbestos diary‟
   methodology as a model which will allow local government in Scotland to gather accurate
   information on the financial burden placed on Local Authority budgets through the presence
   of asbestos in Council premises.

4) Recording methods should include timescales and degree of risk as they apply to individual
   asbestos projects with the Local Authority.

5) Local Authorities should be advised to adopt an asbestos cost recording method which covers
   all Council departments and services.

6) Investigate European funding opportunities in conjunction with the COSLA Brussells office.

7) An approach should be made to the Scottish Executive in order secure financial assistance to
   meet the financial burden place on Local authorities in Scotland through the presence of
   asbestos in Council premises.

8) A Local Authority asbestos consortium should be established in order to provide benefits in
   respect of environmental safety, best practice and most cost-effective methods of asbestos
   management.

9) The presence of asbestos in schools should remain a high priority concern for Local
   Authorities in Scotland. An approach should be made to the Scottish Executive in order to
   secure assistance.

10) Owner occupiers should be made aware of best practice if their properties are among those
    requiring asbestos-related work to be carried out. This may include providing a list of
    approved contractors and a summary of the consequences of engaging inappropriate
    contractors.

11) The production of a comprehensive advice brochure which deals with asbestos in the home
    should be considered. A short publication could cover a wide range of the asbestos-related
    issues which may cause concern to tenants and home owners.




                                                                                                 11
                                    ASBESTOS IN SCHOOLS

Recent experience
There are 2,278 publicly funded primary schools and 389 publicly funded secondary schools in
Scotland. Managing asbestos in schools is given high priority status by Local Authorities
throughout Scotland. Recent experience shows that there has been significant expenditure
imposed on across Councils Scotland through the presence of asbestos in education premises
(mainly schools).

It was reported in the 1970s that of the 13,000 new schools built in the UK between 1945 and
1974, asbestos could be present within the structures of 8,700 school buildings. In the 1980s a
survey by the Inner London Education Authority (ILEA) found that two-thirds of its school buildings
contained asbestos. London Hazards Centre argue that key factors which cause anxiety are the
uncontrolled release of fibres caused by the occupants normal activities, structures prone to
vibration, heavy use, heat abrasion from central heating systems and repeated cleaning and
refurbishment work over the years. Trade unions representing teachers and ancillary workers in
schools have long been concerned about the presence of asbestos in schools

In 1994, there were 20,409 primary schools, 3,428 secondary schools and some 2,500
independent schools in the UK. A report published by the Institute of Environment and Health
(IEH) produced a matrix of assumed use of asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) in schools. The
IEH findings were produced using experience of asbestos surveys. The research addresses the
construction period and the principal asbestos products used in the construction of school
buildings. It is unlikely that prior to 1903 asbestos materials would be used in the construction of
schools. However, heating systems are quite likely to have been replaced or refurbished since
1903 and it is possible that the replacement systems would have been lagged with asbestos
(chrysotile) if the work was carried out prior to 1975.

   Construction period                   Principal asbestos products used on construction

Pre-1903                      Lagging in replacement heating systems
                              Roofing in new/temporary accommodation
                              (mainly chrysotile)

1903-1945                     Lagging in heating systems, asbestos cement roofing (mainly
                              chrysotile)

1945-1964                     Lagging in heating systems, asbestos cement roofing, some partition
                              walls, ceiling panels (Asbestolux); some amphibole lagging and
                              sprayed coating in the early 1960s;
                              Use increased during this period

1964-1975                     Lagging in heating systems (amosite and chrysotile), asbestos-
                              cement roofing and partition walls (chrysotile), amosite board
                              partitions and ceiling panels, amphibole sprayed coatings (fire
                              prevention and acoustic insulation)

1975-1995                     Very little asbestos used in new buildings, some asbestos-cement
                              sheeting used externally

The IEH comment that extensive use was made of sprayed coatings (amphiboles), Asbestolux
ceiling panels, and asbestos board (amosite) and asbestos cement partitioning in the system-built




                                                                                                  12
buildings constructed in the 1960s. The report goes on to indicate that these system-built buildings
might thus be considered to pose a relatively „higher risk‟ of exposure to asbestos.5

Asbestos-related work in schools
A recent study carried out by one Local Authority in Scotland found that over 90 per cent of the
costs and 175 out of the 255 entries made were associated with asbestos-related work, including
surveys, sealing and removal work carried out in schools and other educational establishments. In
another Council a study found that 39 per cent of schoolrooms contained asbestos. Asbestos
containing materials were found to be present in, one form or another, in 95 per cent of secondary
schools, 94 per cent of primary schools, 60 per cent of special educational needs schools and in
fifty per cent of nursery schools in this Local Authority. In another Council two schools which had
asbestos removed in the 1970s were thought to be free of potential exposure. However, during
surveys it was found that the loft areas remained contaminated. Costs of the remedial works were
£110,000 and £163,00 respectively. One of these schools also required having asbestos removed
from ducts, which cost an additional £96,000.

Problems in one school began when electrical rewiring was carried out and damaged ceiling tiles
containing asbestos were identified. Work commenced to ensure that they were made safe.
Contractors were hired to replace some of the tiles during a holiday period. Although this was
carried out, debris, which contained asbestos, was later found lying in four classrooms. This
resulted in action from the Health and Safety Executive who stepped in and shut the school. Pupils
were moved temporarily to another school, the building was closed for several months and
£600,000 was required to deal with the problem.

Estimates of the initial costs of compliance with CAWR 2002 can be made based on figures
included in the Health and Safety Commission consultative document. The average initial costs of
compliance indicated by HSE for a school are £3,360.
 An ad hoc calculation based on HSE figures for one Council‟s schools is set out below.

Schools:                          188 x £3,360             £631,680

A survey carried out by the GMB trade union in the north east of England found that in six schools
the confined spaces of the boiler houses contained damaged and friable asbestos and there were
high concentrations of asbestos-containing dust. Many of the school kitchens, which were
surveyed during the study, were found to have asbestos containing materials which were in a
damaged state.

Asbestos removal costs in 10 schools in Scotland were recently reported. The schools under
scrutiny were built between 1906 and 1975 the costs of removing damaged asbestos ranged from
£15,000 in the lowest example given to £3 million in the highest. Expenditure on the ten asbestos
removal projects adds up to just under £8 million. In another two schools, removal outlay in each
case was estimated to be the cost of a new building. The installation of new computer wiring has
contributed to an increase in these types of asbestos incidents in schools. Throughout the
asbestos removal operations included within this report, three thousand children have been
removed from their classrooms because of the presence of asbestos.

Some examples of asbestos work required in schools include;

   A Type 3 survey carried out for a feasibility study to refurbish one High School cost over
    £12,000 and involved taking 500 samples for analysis.

   Costs of surveys of large schools (1999 figure) were averaging about £1,750


5
 MRC Institute for Environment and Health, 1997, Fibrous materials in the environment, ISBN 1 899110 17 8, page
72.

                                                                                                              13
   Removal of limpet asbestos and large numbers of asbestos insulating board ceiling tiles to
    school classrooms cost over £10,000.
   Removal of a large amount of asbestos insulation board wall cladding to a school stairwell and
    classrooms cost over £10,000.
   Removal of asbestos insulation to pipework underneath classrooms cost over £15,000.
   Removal of asbestos insulation and wall cladding prior to demolition of school Horsa huts cost
    nearly £5,000.

Conclusions
The above examples indicate that it is not only the large capital projects which can run into
hundreds of thousands of pounds (and more) that need to be addressed by local government in
Scotland. It is also this routine asbestos management which is required due to the fabric of the
buildings and the ongoing cycle of maintenance, alteration and refurbishment. The presence of
asbestos in schools should remain a high priority concern for Local Authorities in Scotland.
COSLA may wish to consider an approach to the Scottish Executive in order to secure a
discussion on the specific problems associated with the presence of asbestos in education
premises (mainly schools).




                                                                                               14
                ASBESTOS MANAGEMENT, SURVEYING AND CONSULTANCY

The Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations 2002 and new supporting Approved Codes of
Practice: the impact on local government

The increase in deaths caused by asbestos and the situation of those workers involved in
demolition, maintenance, repair and refurbishment and workers such as plumbers, electricians,
joiners, computer and telecommunications engineers is a problem throughout the European Union.
A quarter of those now dying from asbestos-related diseases were employed in the building
industry at some time during their working lives. Building maintenance and repair workers continue
to be at risk when carrying out work on construction materials which contain asbestos. This is a
problem for Local Authorities due their responsibilities for the upkeep and maintenance of public
buildings, schools, social housing and leisure facilities.

At present Local Authorities have different degrees of compliance with regard to existing asbestos
regulations. Hopefully, assisted by the findings of the COSLA Short Life Working Group on
Asbestos these issues can be addressed from a more positive, unified base and best practice in
key areas can be developed by Local Authorities in Scotland.

It is clear from the significant amount of information contained within the various HSE consultation
documents and the wide range of responses generated that the incoming Control of Asbestos at
Work Regulations 2002 and supporting Approved Codes of Practice will have a significant impact
on the management of asbestos throughout the UK. HSE continues to emphasise the risk to those
in maintenance and building related trades. Local Authorities must also consider the general
public, teachers, pupils as well as workers actually engaged in maintenance, alteration and
refurbishment.

It is proposed that the Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations 1987, 1992 and 1998 amendment
regulations together with the proposed new amendments contained in the consultative document
should be consolidated into one complete set of regulations; The Control of Asbestos at Work
Regulations 2002 (CAWR).

The Government, Health & Safety Commission (HSC) and the Health & Safety Executive (HSE)
are determined to take all necessary action to reduce the risk of people being exposed to
asbestos. The new regulations bring;

      A new duty to manage asbestos
      Implementation of the asbestos requirements of the Chemical Agents Directive (CAD).
      Proposals associated with accreditation for the analysis of materials to identify asbestos.
      Proposed amendment to the Health & Safety (Enforcing Authority Regulations)1998.

Background details
It is well documented that because asbestos has thermal insulation, fireproofing and other physical
and chemical properties, it was used widely by industry for many years. In buildings for example,
asbestos was used in cement cladding, gutters and pipes; fireproof sprays on structural steelwork;
insulating boards in service ducts, walls, partitions and ceilings, finishes such as textured
coatings, floor and roof tiles, pipe and boiler lagging. It has been reported that 140,000,000
square metres of insulating board which contains Amosite (brown asbestos) was used in the UK
most of which is still in place in buildings. It is estimated that 4.4 million buildings still contain
asbestos. Of these, nearly 2 million are in the non-domestic sector. It is estimated by HSE that 50
new laboratories and 15 existing laboratories will need to become accredited to cope with the
demands of CAWR 2002.




                                                                                                     15
 Asbestos, if it is in good condition and remains undisturbed, will cause no harm. It is when this
material is disturbed or damaged that it releases fibres which if breathed in, are harmful to health
and can lead to a range of asbestos-related diseases, including mesothelioma and lung cancer.

The most significant risk of exposure will be from asbestos in areas where maintenance, alteration
or refurbishment is carried out on a regular basis. It is reasonable to assume that this will have a
greater impact on Local Authorities than most other organisations due to the quantity of and range
of buildings for which Councils have responsibility. HSE indicate that asbestos in a very poor
condition might be disturbed simply by somebody just walking past. Problems which often emerge
in schools and other multi-user council properties highlight the significance of CAWR 2002 and the
extent of Local Authority responsibility.

Asbestos in situ
The advice of the Institute for Environment and Health is worth consideration in the context of
routine removal of asbestos products found within the structures of housing stock and other
buildings.

       Existing asbestos in good condition must, where applicable, be managed in situ. Where
       asbestos materials are damaged and fibre release is occurring, removal is justified if this
       would result in a reduction in exposure. A general policy of asbestos removal would result
       in more, not less, exposure and is therefore strongly discouraged. It is recognised that
       judgement relating to the management of asbestos material must include a consideration
       of the perception of risk as well as the risk itself. (Fibrous Materials in the Environment,
       1997, Institute For Environment And Health, University of Leicester, page 5)

It should be emphasised that this is a short and middle term strategy because in the long term,
there will always be deterioration of the asbestos in buildings and this is not a perception but a real
risk. Hence a managed approach to dealing with asbestos is required by Local Authorities rather
than a non-managed approach.


Research findings
Each year around 5,000 deaths in the UK caused by asbestos. The Scottish Trades Union
Congress (STUC) report that between 1997 and 2001 there were around 1,800 deaths caused by
asbestos in Scotland. Research confirms that the largest group of workers at risk from asbestos
exposure are those in maintenance and building related trades such as joiners, plumbers,
electricians and cablers. These occupations are particularly vulnerable because, very often, they
unknowingly work on asbestos containing materials (ACMs). In addition, there are the people who
are the users of, and those who work in, or are educated in these premises. This is a problem for
Local Authorities due their responsibilities for the upkeep and maintenance of public buildings,
schools and leisure facilities. Building maintenance and repair workers continue to be at risk when
carrying out work on buildings which contain asbestos. It is with this information in mind that HSC
developed its proposal for a „duty to manage‟.

The new duty will require;

      Reasonable steps to be taken to determine the location and condition of materials likely to
       contain asbestos.
      A presumption that materials contain asbestos unless there is strong evidence that they do
       not.
      A written record to be made of the location and condition of the asbestos or presumed
       asbestos in premises
      A risk assessment to be made
      A plan to be prepared which sets out how the risk is to be managed
      Implementation of the plan
      Passing on of information about asbestos containing materials to those who need it

                                                                                                    16
       Monitoring and reviewing arrangements to be in place including keeping a check on the
        condition of asbestos and presumed asbestos containing materials (ACMs).

The Duty Holder: key issues from HSE consultation process

1. Who the Duty Holder should be for the new „duty to manage‟

2. Which premises the regulation should apply to; In the original proposal the Duty Holder was
   identified as the „Employer in control of premises which they occupy and in which persons
   work‟. The HSC has found it is difficult to come up with one definition which applies to Duty
   Holder and covers every situation. However, it is recognised that unless the Duty Holder is
   clearly defined and appropriate; difficulties will arise. HSC has therefore developed a revised
   proposal to address the concerns raised.

While the main Duty Holder remains as the employer in occupation of premises in which persons
work, the new regulations will additionally;

   Place the duty on the employer to ensure that the requirements of new Regulation 4 are
    carried out.

   Introduce a duty on all other parties who have, by virtue of any contract or tenancy, an
    obligation in relation to the maintenance, alteration or repair of the premises.

The „other parties‟ referred to above will include owners of buildings, managing agents, surveyors,
architects and others. The extent of this duty will be determined by express or implied terms in
leases or contracts between the parties. The revised Approved Code of Practice (ACoP) provides
some examples of how this would work in different situations. The ACoP approach is consistent
with Section 4 (3) (a) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. (HSWA) which contains general
health and safety duties for persons who have control, to any extent, over non-domestic premises
used as workplaces.

Chemical Agents Directive
The requirements of the Chemical Agents Directive (CAD) which was adopted by the European
Council of Ministers on 7 April 1998 should be considered in conjunction with the incoming Control
of Asbestos at Work Regulations (CAWR). This Directive deals with minimum requirements for the
protection of the health and safety of workers who deal with asbestos and other chemical agents.
The safety requirements of CAD will be covered by CAWR 2002.

The duty to manage
The „duty to manage‟ requires the passing on of information regarding the location and condition of
ACMs to „every person liable to disturb it‟. This includes the emergency services. This is intended
to keep the main focus of the regulation on protecting people most at risk. Special emphasis is
placed on those workers employed in maintenance and building related trades. This should also
include anybody who is likely to come into contact with asbestos, if it is disturbed. The resulting
increased awareness could help reduce unnecessary alarm and avoid pressure to remove
asbestos that is actually in good condition and is unlikely to be disturbed. This removal which may
have a lower priority could create unnecessary risk and costs. It could also create a delay in
carrying out asbestos-related improvements which are more urgently required.

These aspects of the regulations may have minimal effect on many organisations. However, the
scale of activity which could be required by Local Authorities may be significant. It should be noted
that the diversity and range of buildings for which local councils are responsible contributes to the
enormity of this task.

There is a duty to carry out risk assessments of work which has the potential to expose employees
to asbestos. This requires that assessments be reviewed regularly. Competent and adequately

                                                                                                     17
trained Council employees would preclude the need to hire consultants to carry out the initial risk
assessment function and subsequent reviews.

Accidents, incidents & emergencies
There is a duty which deals with accidents, incidents and emergencies. This includes the need to
protect the health and safety of employees from accident, incident or emergency related to the use
of asbestos in a work process or to the removal or repair of asbestos materials. Asbestos incidents
are a common cause for concern. Councils‟ relationship with personnel employed in public
buildings (including schools), parents and the general public can be strained through
misinformation and poor public relations skills. Suitable asbestos awareness training could help to
reduce adverse outcomes during and after an asbestos incident.

Openness
Experience shows that a culture of transparency, openness including the free distribution of
„asbestos information‟ materials reinforces the trust which is required on all sides to manage the
risks presented by asbestos. It is also important that Local Authority personnel understand fully the
perception of risk which can be present through misinformation, poor information and a patronising
attitude to people who are concerned by the very presence of asbestos in the built environment in
which they, or family members live, work or are educated.

In the event of an accident, incident or emergency related to unplanned release of asbestos the
Local Authority must ensure that they carry out certain immediate steps. They should mitigate the
effects of the event, restore the situation to normal, and inform any person exposed to asbestos.

There may be advantages for Local Authorities both in terms of environmental safety and cost
effectiveness if there was public access to appropriate facilities for the removal of low level, non-
commercial asbestos waste. Perhaps the most common example is the garden shed which has a
corrugated asbestos roofs. This matter requires further consideration by individual Local
Authorities.

Appropriate Premises: the new duty
The new duty applies to non-domestic premises. However it should be noted that the common
parts of premises, whether they be commercial buildings, housing developments or blocks of flats,
are included. Some respondents to the HSE consultation process thought that the duty should be
extended to individual domestic dwellings, particularly those in the social rented sector which has
a high rate of maintenance work activity. The main argument for inclusion, was that the risks to
workers undertaking maintenance activities in individual flats or houses within the social housing
sector are comparable with those working on commercial or industrial premises. The logic being
that workers should therefore be offered similar standards of protection. This issue will be
considered separately by HSC in a future consultation process.

Lead-in period: the new regulations
HSC has allowed a lead-in period for the development of supporting accreditation and personnel
certification scheme for surveyors. This is required particularly by those organisations with larger
property portfolios, for example, Local Authorities, to plan for the incoming regulations. CAWR
2002 will become law in September of this year.
 HSC/HSE is proposing a lead in period of 18 months, so that the effective date for enforcing the
new duty will be in the Spring of 2004 with the accreditation required to carry out bulk sampling to
be in place by Summer 2004.

HSC/HSE is anxious that organisations start to plan early to manage the risk from asbestos in their
premises. HSE have already started a campaign to raise awareness of the new duty. They are
also actively encouraging the development of accreditation and personnel certification schemes for
asbestos surveyors. These schemes will set the standards to which surveys must be carried out
by trained and competent staff. If these schemes prove successful, consideration will be given to


                                                                                                    18
introducing a legal requirement for Duty Holders to use only accredited/certified organisations or
individuals to carry out asbestos surveys.

Approved Codes of Practice
The management of asbestos in premises deals with the status of an Approved Code of Practice
(ACoP) which provides advice on how to comply with Regulation 4 of the Control of Asbestos at
Work Regulations 2002 (CAWR). The ACoP gives advice on the preferred means of compliance
with the new Regulation. This advice has a special legal status. If a Duty Holder is prosecuted for
a breach of health and safety law and it is proven beyond doubt that they did not follow the
relevant provisions of the ACoP, it will need to be shown that they have complied with the law in
some other way. If not, a court will find them at fault. The ACoP deals with the following issues;

       Duties under Regulation 4 of CAWR to manage the risk from asbestos
       Who has a duty to manage asbestos?
       What has to be done and how?
       Delegating the work
       Finding asbestos materials and assessing their condition
       Assessing the risk
       Managing the risk and preparing a plan
       Managing asbestos left in place
       Monitoring arrangements
       Duties of owners, managing agents and others
       Obligations of contractors

Timescales, compliance & costs

   The proposed ACoP does not require a survey to identify ACMs to be undertaken in all cases
    before the specified two year period. There is the option of undertaking a „presumptive‟ survey
    in which material could be treated as if it could possibly contain asbestos, and the risks
    assessed on this basis. If the building is in good condition and, for example, it was apparent
    that ACMs are overlaid or sealed with what is clearly not an ACM, then no further action need
    be taken until work commences which is likely to disturb any asbestos present. The condition
    of all asbestos in situ should be regularly monitored and any changes recorded.

   For schools, healthcare facilities, public buildings and places of worship, a specialist survey
    must take place at some point over the next five years. For commercial and retail premises, it
    is estimated that the majority will have to undertake a specialist survey within five years of
    CAWR 2002 coming into force.

   Total undiscounted costs to all non-residential sectors are estimated at £5.1 billion in total
    between 2000 and 2050. This is equivalent to £3.2 billion in present (year 2000) values.

   There will be increased public expenditure on asbestos-related matters due to the incoming
    regulations. The total initial costs of implementing the new regulations are estimated at £3.1
    billion, around 85% of which will be incurred by the retail/industrial sector. HSE indicate that
    spread over 5 years the initial costs of around £625 million per year would be in the region of
    4% total UK spend on repair and maintenance each year.

   Initially, principal costs will be incurred in providing adequate training for anyone likely to
    disturb asbestos as part of their work. This could be a very wide constituency as far as local
    councils are concerned. The burden placed on local government finances and manpower
    resources due to the implementation of the incoming asbestos regulations could be significant.

   A comparison of the number of Local Authority owned/managed buildings in proportion to the
    total number of buildings in Scotland which contain asbestos may give an clear picture of the

                                                                                                     19
   scale of the statutory responsibility placed upon Local Authorities under the duties imposed by
   CAWR 2002.

Local Authority: roles and responsibilities
In view of the role and responsibilities of Local Authorities appropriate asbestos-related training
must be considered as a measure which will prevent or reduce exposure to asbestos. This would
allow for the development of suitable training modules to meet the specific needs of local
government. Economies of scale could be achieved on a cross-council basis through minimising
the duplication of resources in this area. External sources of funding for this type of training should
be explored.

Local Authorities must ensure that adequate information, instruction and training is given to those
employees who are or are liable to be exposed to asbestos. This covers a wide range of risk and
perceived risk. A programme of asbestos awareness training at several levels would assist local
councils in relaying accurate and up to date information to employees in a direct and cost-effective
manner.

Accreditation
HSE encourage the development of accreditation and personnel certification schemes for
asbestos surveyors. Local Authorities should consider the advantages of council employees being
trained to United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) required standard which allow them to
carry out asbestos surveys under the new regulations. Potential improvements in service provision
should be measured against past performances and costs of external operatives. There are no
barriers to appropriate council employees achieving required accreditation standards. A Local
Authority survey team could be better placed to facilitate a planned approach in a number of areas
of asbestos management.




                                                                                                    20
                                    THE ASBESTOS REGISTER

Purpose and Benefits
An asbestos register is a record of an asbestos containing material (ACM). The register may be a
note that an ACM has been identified or a more detailed record which describes the type of
asbestos and the extent and condition of the material.

There are no set criteria for creating an asbestos register but it should provide information which is
readily available to maintenance workers and contractors and is crucial to the management of
asbestos in any building.

The proposed amendments to the Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations place an explicit
responsibility on people in control of buildings to keep an up to date record of the location and
condition of ACM‟s and suspected ACM‟s.

An asbestos register will form an effective part of a Local Authority‟s health and safety procedures,
satisfying legal requirements, and resulting in reduced asbestos exposure of employees, visitors
and contractors, when well organised and used.

Asbestos information should be available at the start of all building maintenance or refurbishment
projects to minimise disruption and adequately manage health and safety during the course of
ensuing works.

Where major projects are proposed asbestos information required for the health and safety plan
under the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 1994 can be efficiently produced.

Content and Operation
For small buildings, the register may contain only a few entries which can be held in a ring binder.
For complex sites or multiple buildings where a central source of information is desired it may be
more suitable to adopt a computer based register with spreadsheet, database and computer aided
design facilities.

Certain topics may be worth including in an introduction section of the register covering: -

                              In-house asbestos procedures
                              Comment on frequently used materials
                              Any limitations of the register
                              Glossary of specialist terms

While the condition and location of asbestos in a building or on a site will be the basis of a register,
it is reasonable to include details on the asbestos type and the extent of the material. It is
important that ACM‟s which may be present in plant and equipment in and around a building are
not overlooked. The register must be managed and kept up to date with information which is
clear and easily accessed otherwise its value is diminished.

The individual or group appointed to compile the register and collate information should have
knowledge of asbestos and buildings related issues in order to understand the implications of
collated information. For example, where asbestos has been identified or removed it is possible
that asbestos exists in similar areas of a building.

The asbestos register is part of health and safety procedures and should be designed to take into
account and integrate with other systems used by an organisation such as computer aided design
and asset registers. The following list provides an outline of the information which may be
included in the register.



                                                                                                     21
Minimum information

          Asbestos location
          The form of the material
          Confirmed or suspected
          Quantity
          Condition


Best Practice Information

                            Use of area/room containing asbestos
                            Dimensions of the material
                            Inspection status of all areas/rooms
                            Access restrictions
                            Sample reference and Analysis
                            Friability and Material Type
                            Protection in place
                            Labelling in place
                            Photographic records
                            Drawings
                            Accessibility of material
                            Air flow
                            Management recommendation


Sources of Information
Information that can be used to compile the register can be obtained from several sources.

Designers plans and specifications will often indicate where asbestos products were to be installed
in the construction of a building. Documentation should also be available for work which has
involved the repair or removal of asbestos either as remedial work or as part of a refurbishment
project.
Where the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations apply to a project, records of work
with asbestos should be contained in the health and safety file.

Long standing employees, particularly maintenance workers or building inspectors, may know of
asbestos material or recall when removal work took place. Similarly, contractors with whom an
organisation has had a long relationship may have records or knowledge of asbestos based
materials.

Information on equipment such as kilns, commercial kitchen appliances, etc. may be available and
details of asbestos products within heater units and boilers have been published by
manufacturers. Material analysis reports which have been carried out may be limited to basic
data however such reports can be used as an indication of asbestos presence requiring further
investigation.

   Underlying and supporting an accurate asbestos register is the information provided by an
    asbestos site survey.

Control and Maintenance
The purpose of any procedures relating to the management of the register should be to ensure
that an up to date copy of information is available for any one who requires it. Procedures should
be put in place for access, maintenance and update. The existence of the register should be well
publicised with the aim of encouraging its use.

                                                                                                22
As well as maintenance workers and contractors, enquires for information from the register should
also come from those concerned with planning works, such as architects, designers and
surveyors.    The information may need to be given out urgently at any time of the day to
emergency services such as the fire brigade therefore consideration needs to be given to ease of
access in such circumstances. When information is given out in response to an enquiry the
following should be included: -

   the location and condition of asbestos.
   date the information was last updated
   comment on common materials or areas of concern
   limitations of the information

Consistent Approach
A consistent approach should be adopted for updating the register with a documented procedure
to ensure uniformity of updates. Update information may be generated from a number of sources.
Where an asbestos management scheme includes regular inspection of material, this information
should be fed back into the register. Contractors should be advised of the need to update on
materials and if, during the course of work, they suspect asbestos materials may be present, this
information should go into a register update.

Any works carried out where the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 1994 apply
will generate a health and safety file detailing remaining asbestos materials and including copies of
analytical reports and inspections. Almost every feature within the register should be considered
updateable and will include: -

          identification of „new‟ asbestos materials
          removal or remedial works to existing materials
          change in area reference or use
          comments on „common materials‟ where more have been identified




                                                                                                  23
                               MANAGEMENT OF CONTRACTORS

Introduction
It is the task of Local Councils, as enforcing authorities, to help ensure that contractors fulfil their
statutory duties to employees, other workers and members of the public. The scale of this
undertaking can be seen from the information contained within the Health & Safety Executive‟s
Health and Safety Statistics for 2000/1.This document indicates that 36 workers died due to
accidents at work in Scottish workplaces, 13 of these in construction and 8 in the service sector.
This represents a 9% increase in Scotland on the previous year. These deaths were preventable,
and, combined with the 2720 major injuries and 658 cases of prescribed industrial diseases in
Scotland, provide a focus for attention and subsequent action which can result in improvements.
(249 of the ill health cases relate to lung disease, including asbestos-induced diseases). It has
been repeated many times before that behind every one of these statistics there is a history of
unacceptable pain, suffering and costs to those who have been killed, or maimed through
inadequate health & safety measures being in place. The Lord Chancellor is on record as saying
that someone injured by a breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 is no less a victim
than someone who is assaulted. In this context exposure of employees, other workers and
members of the public to asbestos dust is equally unacceptable.

The same HSE report lists 1328 enforcement notices (24% in construction and 16% in service
sector) served in Scotland for breaches of health and safety legislation and 114 convictions. This
information, including names of convicted companies, is available on the HSE website and can be
used in determining the suitability of contractors for inclusion in an approved list of contractors.

Local Authorities can implement a wide range of measures to maintain and improve health and
safety standards in Council contracts. In addition, their role as enforcers of health and safety
legislation in certain sectors means they hold important information on prospective contractors‟
health and safety performance. The Health and Safety Executive/ Local Authorities Enforcement
Liaison Committee (HELA) is now considering making information concerning enforcement action
taken by Local Authority Enforcement Officers available in the same way as data concerning HSE
enforcement action.

Under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and the Management of Health and Safety at Work
Regulations 1999 Councils have a duty to ensure the safety of those persons who are not Local
Authority (LA) employees, as well as to protect the safety and health of Council employees who
could be affected by the unsafe act of a contractor. These duties are explicit in the Construction,
(Design and Management Regulations) 1994 (CDM).

RHSS
The Government‟s Revitalising Health and Safety Strategy (RHSS) acknowledges that clients,
local authorities in particular, are in a good position to demand that contractors demonstrate
conscientious standards of health and safety when tendering for contracts and in the course of
awarded contracts. Local Authorities are expected to be exemplars of health and safety and to
share the benefits of their experience and position to influence and assist smaller employers to
improve their standards. (High accident rates result in more expensive contracts that fail to deliver
on time). Action Point 19 of the RHSS makes reference to the need for a Client‟s Charter which
would include targets to drive up standards on health and safety. This is already in place in
England. The vetting and monitoring of contractors are vital tools in achieving this objective. The
extension of invitations for asbestos awareness training to contractors‟ employees may be another
appropriate example of this.

Action Point 20 of RHSS refers to the measures that will be taken by the Local Government
Construction Task Force to ensure that health and safety will be factored into construction
procurement by local government. Action Point 21 of the strategy states that HSE will produce

                                                                                                     24
guidance for Government Departments and other public bodies on how to achieve exemplary
standards of health and safety in construction projects with which they are involved. This is a very
positive development and one which will be welcomed by organisations who continually work
towards achieving improvements in the field of health & safety.

RHSS goes on to suggest that contract specifications should make explicit reference to health and
safety requirements where appropriate and that companies that have previously performed badly
on health and safety should be excluded form further tendering opportunities until such a time as
they can demonstrate acceptable levels of improvement.

It is emphasised throughout the strategy that safety must be a significant factor in the awarding of
contracts. Recently, one Local Authority in Scotland carried out a study examining health & safety
practices of contractors who were engaged in a number of Council contracts. Fifteen construction
sites were visited by a Local Authority inspector, unannounced. In twelve of the 15 there were
unsafe practices occurring and improvement or prohibition notices were issued.

Sitesafe Scotland

The Sitesafe Scotland Committee is Scotland‟s Local Government Construction Task Force.
Sitesafe has developed a Construction Safety Action Plan to co-ordinate and drive the
requirements of Revitalising Health and Safety construction activities in Scotland.

Clients Action Points include the following:

   To implement the Action Plan in the HSE Working Well Together Campaign

   To adopt a policy of respect for people in construction with respect to site conditions, welfare,
    training and certification

   To standardise contractor selection criteria to include health and safety competence and
    demonstration, including occupational health provision and existence of competent health and
    safety assistance

   To collect health and safety performance data

   To provide client leadership in procurement and supply, identifying risk and how best to
    manage it

Vetting of contractors
In order to ensure the welfare of contractors and their operatives, it is therefore expected as good
practice to have some form of vetting procedure which monitors the health and safety performance
and standards of contractors.

Vetting may take various forms generally, including a paperwork exercise. Monitoring to confirm
that contractors are implementing their stated policies and procedures should involve physical site
visits to check on working standards. In the paperwork exercise, contractors typically submit
documentary evidence that they are competent to manage health and safety on their work sites.

Key issues include;

   What information is a contractor asked to submit to the Local Authority?

   Within the Local Authority who then examines information submitted by a contractor to
    determine suitability and authenticity?




                                                                                                    25
      What is the level of expertise and experience of the Local Authority employee who examines
       information submitted by a contractor?

      What procedures are in place if information submitted is unsuitable or does not meet
       acceptable standard?

In addition to these points it may assist the achievement of higher on-site health & safety
standards if Local Authorities addressed the key factors which determine whether, or not a
contractor is included on an approved list. This would include adopting procedures to ensure that
all contractors performing work for Councils are subject to the same selection process. Another
question is the reviewing of approved lists. Are contractors on an approved list for life or are they
reviewed? It is important that approved lists are monitored and reviewed appropriately.

Most Scottish Local Authorities would appear to have some form of paper vetting programme.
There is anecdotal evidence to suggest that these vetting procedures often overlook those
contractors whose work does not fall under the remit of the CDM regulations.

It is not clear whether the paperwork exercise is in all cases conducted by health and safety
professionals or whether, in some situations, documents are just „ticked off‟ and filed by
administrative staff, without any measure of the quality of the submissions.

Not all Councils are conducting site visits to specifically monitor health and safety standards.
However, many feel they achieve this through the Clerks of Works in the course of their site visits.
This will depend to some extent on their competence to judge health and safety management and
their authority to suspend work if they are not satisfied with current standards.

All contractors who are to carry out any licensed work involving materials which contain asbestos
must be in possession of a licence issued by the HSE under the Asbestos Licensing Regulations
1983 and must be authorised for the appropriate category.

i.        Sprayed coatings
ii.       Thermal insulation
iii.      Insulating board
iv.       Textured coatings

It has to be considered that not all work with the potential to disturb asbestos-containing materials
is licensed work. Licensing requirements depend on the type of asbestos, volume and nature of
work to be undertaken. Some work on asbestos containing materials can be carried out by an
unlicensed contractor. It is very important, therefore, that the standard of vetting contractors is, in
general, appropriate if safety issues associated with asbestos are not to be overlooked.

If contractors are to be routinely inspected on site by health and safety professionals
Councils may be required to appoint additional staff.

Not all Councils have specific questions or demands placed on asbestos contractors through the
vetting process. Some ask for a asbestos removal licence number, some make random checks
through the Health and Safety Executive, but most assume that contractors are genuine. Recent
experience has shown that this method is not always foolproof and that additional checks may be
helpful.

In order to conduct a site inspection at an asbestos removal project, a level of competency is
needed. Additional training may be required, even for Health and Safety professionals, as well as
risk assessments to enable them to carry out inspections.

The collaboration on contractor-related matters involving the Ayrshire councils is a good example
of how a Council-led scheme could operate competently to produce a safer working environment

                                                                                                     26
with more cost effective results. A national approval scheme may assist best practice and reduce
duplication of effort and result in benefits to all stakeholders through resulting economies of scale.

An alternative would be to sign up to a proprietary vetting mechanism such as that operated under
the name of Construction Health and Safety (CHAS) in England. This requires Local Authority
officers being trained as inspectors by CHAS so that they can submit the results of their contractor
vetting programme to the CHAS database. The information is then made available to other
customers committed to the scheme.

Recommendations
   1) Local Authorities should review how they initially approve and subsequently monitor
      contractors. Particular emphasis to be placed on the legal duties of licensed asbestos
      removal contractors.

   2) Contractor management programmes must also include sub-contractors appointed by
      departments. For example, sub-contractors to Direct Labour Organisations (DLOs).

   3) Local Authority contractor vetting programmes should consider both licensed and non-
      licensed work with asbestos. This is a crucial component of an effective procedure in view
      of the number of potential asbestos incidents which can occur during general maintenance,
      alteration and refurbishment work.

   4) Contractor vetting programmes should recognise that an asbestos removal contractor may
      be acting as a sub-contractor to a main contractor.

   5) Councils should ensure that submissions requested in the vetting process for contractors
      engaged in asbestos removal should routinely include, at least, the following information;

              Copy of appropriate Asbestos Licence
              Copy of current Employers‟ liability insurance cover
              Copy of current Public liability insurance cover
              Demonstrate a level of financial stability
              Membership of trade association(s)
              Training records including details of refresher training
              Details of vetting procedures for sub-contractors
              Relevant Risk Assessments (recognising the limitations of generic assessments
               and insisting on contract specific assessments where appropriate once the tender
               has been awarded)
              Relevant COSHH assessments
              Details of HSE prosecutions, prohibition notices or improvement orders
              Quality assurance procedure
              Evidence of independence, impartiality and integrity
              Demonstrate experience, expertise and ability to meet contractual requirements

   6) Monitoring of contractors should include unannounced site visits to confirm and monitor
      health and safety performance.

   7) Contractors who fail to submit information requested for vetting purposes should not be
      included on approved lists.

   8) Councils should remove from recommended lists those contractors who fail to meet the
      health and safety standards stipulated in the approval process.

   9) Councils should remove from recommended lists those contractors who fail to re-submit
      information for the purpose of reviews.


                                                                                                   27
10) Councils should make above information known to other Scottish Local Authorities.

11) Councils should provide contractors and its own sub-contractors with information regarding
    asbestos awareness in addition to general health & safety procedures on council sites.

12) Councils should provide specific information on the location of any known asbestos
    containing materials on a particular work site.

13) Contractors and sub-contractors on approved lists should be reviewed at a period not
    exceeding 3 years to ensure that all information held is accurate and up-to-date.

14) Councils should consider working towards a Scotland-wide contractor vetting and
    management programme in order to minimise duplication of effort, achieve economies of
    scale and maximise shared best practice.

15) Site analysts should be independent from asbestos contractors and should be employed by
    the client.




                                                                                            28
                       ASBESTOS CONTAINING TEXTURED COATINGS

Introduction
The management of asbestos content decorative texture coatings will continue to present
problems for Local Authorities in Scotland for some time to come. These materials were frequently
specified and applied as a decorative textured coating on walls and ceilings. These are frequently
known by their manufacturers name e.g. Artex, Nutex, etc. This report provides background
information on the material and offers alternative methods for the management and/or removal of
decorative texture coatings.

Common Usage
Asbestos content textured coatings were generally applied as an original treatment to ceilings
and/or walls during the construction of a house. Householders may have subsequently applied
asbestos textured coatings as a decorative treatment. Although asbestos was omitted from the
manufacturing process around 1984, stocks remained in circulation in stockists and builders
merchants for some time thereafter. It is therefore possible that asbestos content textured coating
material may be discovered in houses and flats completed prior to 1992. Paint treatments are
likely to have been applied as an over-coat material. It is of note that asbestos content textured
coatings may also be found in non-domestic properties.

Material Characteristics.
Decorative textured coatings display varying levels of white asbestos content, generally between
3-5% Chrysotile. Variations in the level of asbestos content may be attributable to the manufacture
process or manufacturer of the original product. Differences in the level of asbestos content of site
sampled material also exist within an individual wall or ceiling surface. This is due to
inconsistencies in the site mixing process during application.



Health Risk from Exposure to Textured Coatings.
When discovered in good condition, i.e. not flaking or damaged and fully encapsulated by a paint
treatment, asbestos content textured coatings present a relatively low health risk. However,
textured coatings must not be sanded or worked on using power tools.

Asbestos Legislation Applying to Textured Coatings
Asbestos content textured material is deemed a „Coating‟ under the Asbestos Regulations. Work
on asbestos content textured coatings is a Licensed activity under the Asbestos (Licensing)
Regulations 1983, and as such must be carried out by a Health and Safety Executive (HSE)
Licensed Asbestos Contractor. In addition, such work is Notifiable to the appropriate enforcing
authority. The Notification requirements are triggered by any work which an employee is, or is
liable to be, exposed to asbestos in excess of the appropriate action level. Such Notification must
be given in writing at least 14 days before commencing the work, or before such shorter time the
enforcing authority may agree.

Under the Special Waste Regulations 1996 all forms of asbestos waste containing in excess of 1%
chrysotile asbestos must be considered as Special Waste. Asbestos waste classified as Special
Waste requires to be consigned. Under the Waste Management Licensing Regulations 1994,
asbestos contractors must have a Waste Management License if they transfer or provide
immediate storage for asbestos waste. In addition, asbestos contractors must take all reasonable
steps to ensure that asbestos waste they produce due to their works is disposed of at a facility that
is licensed for that purpose.

Engaging a Consultant to Undertake Material Sampling
Where sampling of potential asbestos material is not undertaken by suitably trained and
experienced Council surveyors, it is recommended that Council‟s directly contracts with trained

                                                                                                  29
and experienced consultant surveyors. This ensures separation is maintained between the
Council/surveyor and Asbestos Contractor, who historically may have undertaken material
sampling. Reference should be made to the Method of Determining Hazardous Substances 100
(MDHS 100) with regard to the scope and type of survey to be undertaken, etc.

Sampling Textured Coatings in a House
The most likely event to bring the material to the attention of a Council is where maintenance or
repair works requires to be carried out in a house. There are no firm rules on the sampling
frequency for textured coatings. However, in advance of any works to an area of textured coating
material suspected of containing asbestos, it is recommended that 2 or 3 samples are taken for
laboratory analysis from a 1 square metre area. The purpose of multiple sampling is to address
potential result inconsistencies due to the site mixing process during its application. If any single
sample of the textured coating material contains asbestos, clearly this material should be treated
as asbestos. If a number of samples taken from surfaces in different rooms contain asbestos, no
further analysis may be necessary elsewhere in the house. In this instance, it may be considered
reasonable to treat all areas of the textured coating material as containing asbestos. Final
discretion should be left with the surveyor on the level of sampling necessary for a material. It is
also of value for a surveyor to assess the condition, location and vulnerability of asbestos content
materials and to prepare a risk assessment

Bulk Sampling Techniques for Textured Coatings
Where works are planned to a house and textured decorative materials are discovered, it will be
necessary to obtain samples for analytical testing by a United Kingdom Accreditation Service
(UKAS) Laboratory. Sampling should be undertaken by carefully scraping the surface with a sharp
blade or chisel directly into a sampling bag. Any debris must be cleaned up immediately after
sampling using a type H vacuum cleaner which conforms to British Standard 5415. It may also be
helpful to take photographs of the sampled material, which can assist with indicating its location,
type, extent and condition. Alternatively, if no sample is taken of the suspect material the Asbestos
Regulations require that it must be treated as if containing crocidolite or blue asbestos. Currently,
Asbestos Legislation does not require houses to be proactively surveyed for the purpose of
gathering general information on asbestos location, condition or extent of textured coatings, or any
other asbestos containing material. However, this may be of benefit in planning maintenance and
repair works.

Sampling Textured Coatings in a Number of Addresses
Refurbishment, electrical rewire or central heating installation projects by Social Housing provider
are likely to include works within a substantial number of addresses. In an effort to minimise the
cost of surveying and sampling, and also to minimise disruption to tenants, it is recommended that
trained asbestos surveyors undertake a random 10% survey of textured coatings in each defined
house type. If survey and sampling results are consistent for a house type, i.e. all results indicate
the materials to contain or not contain asbestos, it would be considered reasonable that such
results form the basis of actions within the contract, without recourse to further sampling of that
house type.

Where survey and sampling results show inconsistencies in a house type or types, it will be
necessary to undertake a 100% survey of all houses, thereby ensuring accurate results which can
be relied upon. Alternatively, it may be assumed that all houses with textured coatings contain an
asbestos content, and a Licensed Contractor employed to undertake any works with the material.

Air Sampling
Air Sampling Following Work with Asbestos Content Textured Coatings
Under the Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations 2002; it is a mandatory requirement that
employers who contract a third party to undertake air sampling for asbestos to ensure they employ
a laboratory accredited to EN45001.




                                                                                                  30
Duty of Care on Notification to Tenants
Where known asbestos content material is confirmed to exist in a house, a Duty of Care exists on
the landlord to: -

   notify the tenant of its type and location
   determine the condition of the material
   carry out a Risk Assessment, and
   monitor condition on a regular basis – possibly annually but dependant on the risk.

Guidance on the management of the asbestos content material should be provided to the tenant,
in addition to a point of contact should further advice be required. The requirement to inform
subsequent new tenants to a house, likely to contain or confirmed as containing asbestos material
also exists. Where a tenant notifies an interest in purchasing their house, and that house is likely
to or has been confirmed as containing asbestos material, relevant information on the material
should be provided to them. This may include location, type and condition of asbestos. It may be
advisable to provide this information to the Council‟s Legal Department prior to missives being
signed with a view to minimising potential disputes.

Notification of Asbestos Content to Owners of Former Council Houses
Where a house type within an area is ascertained as containing asbestos material, a Duty of Care
may also exist on a Council to inform occupants of similar houses in the area of the possibility an
asbestos material existing within their house. It may also be advisable to provide an appropriate
advice leaflet on the management of asbestos materials, and sources of additional relevant
information.

Impact of Asbestos Content Textured Materials on Councils
Textured coatings pose a dilemma for Social Housing providers due to the proliferation of the
material throughout the housing stock. The material requires to be appropriately managed under
the Asbestos Regulations, therefore works affecting the material may incur a premium cost. A
responsibility to appropriately manage, or remove the material following risk assessment, is likely
to impose a significant financial burden.

Minor Works Affecting Asbestos Textured Materials
Where asbestos content textured material is discovered and there is a possibility that the material
may be disturbed. Competent operatives trained in working with asbestos should carry this out. If
the task falls within the Asbestos Licensing Regulations 1983, a HSE Licensed Asbestos
Contractor must undertake this. Where a hole requires to be drilled through asbestos content
textured material, all necessary precautions should be taken. This may include damping with pva
spray, using a hand drill - not powered, employing shadow vacuuming techniques, etc. Operatives
are advised to wear a HEPA mask and overalls. On completion of the task, a visual inspection
requires to be carried out to ensure that no visible sign of debris or dust remains. The HSE
recommend that an air test is not generally necessary. It may be considered prudent for Councils
to insist that random air re-assurance tests be carried out, thereby ensuring asbestos dust
reducing methods employed by the Contractor are successful.

An alternative approach may be to apply a coating material that locally softens the asbestos
textured coating, thereby facilitating its removal by a scraper. This may not be considered
financially viable for large areas of asbestos textured coatings on the grounds of cost.

Major Works affecting Asbestos Textured Coating
Where asbestos content textured material is discovered and there is a requirement to disturb the
material, as previously noted, this must be carried out by an HSE Licensed Asbestos Contractor.
Where the asbestos material will be disturbed or is to be removed this will require full compliance
with the Asbestos Legislation. It may be necessary for the occupants to decant the affected area of

                                                                                                 31
the house; therefore, alternative temporary accommodation may require to be provided. Following
completion of the works, air clearance certificates from a UKAS Accredited Laboratory will require
to be obtained with 1 copy left on site, and another retained by the Council. (timescale for
retention?)

Removal -v- Management of Asbestos Textured Coatings
Where asbestos content textured material is confirmed in a house, if the occupant is notified of its
presence and the material is the subject of a management regime, no further action will be
necessary other than a regular cyclic inspection.

Advantages of Removal
 No further need for cyclic inspection regime
 No further risk from asbestos in repairs or maintenance works
 No further maintenance requirement or management regime
 No further occupant notification requirement
 Requirement to balance risk of removal to employee -v- management to occupant

Disadvantages of Removal
 Likely to be expensive
 Likely to be time consuming
 Requirement to balance risk of removal to employee -v- management to occupant


Encapsulation -v- Removal of Asbestos Textured Coatings

Advantages of Encapsulation by Plasterboard Finish

   Possibly less expensive for ceilings - limited impact on finishes, services, etc.

Disadvantages of Encapsulation by Plasterboard Finish

   Management information to be provided to current occupiers and new tenants
   Cyclic inspection regime possibly still necessary
   Management information to be provided to contractors when undertaking works
   Relatively expensive for walls - disturbance to architraves, skirtings, services, etc.

Advantages of Removal by Paste Application
 Limited disturbance to existing skirtings, facings, services, etc.
 No management information requires to be provided to current occupiers
 No management information requires to be provided to new tenants
 No management information required for contractors when undertaking works
 Possibly more expensive than encapsulation in short term

Recommendations
   1) The management of asbestos content decorative texture coatings will continue to present
      problems for Local Authorities in Scotland for some time to come. These materials are
      mainly (though not exclusively) found in domestic premises. Cross council collaboration on
      new developments and techniques in the management of texture coatings would assist the
      achievement of best practice in the areas of community safety and the cost effective
      management of these materials.

    2) Appropriate advice and guidance on asbestos content decorative texture coatings,
       including exercising caution in certain aspects of DIY, should be made available to tenants
       and homeowners.


                                                                                                 32
3) Local Authorities should identify a point of contact should further advice on asbestos
   containing materials be required.

4) Local Authorities should inform subsequent new tenants to a house, likely to contain, or
   confirmed as containing asbestos material also exists.

5) Where a tenant notifies an interest in purchasing their house, and that house is likely to or
   has been confirmed as containing asbestos material, relevant information on the material
   should be provided to them. This may include location, type and condition of asbestos.

6) Full information on the presence of asbestos should be given to the Council‟s Legal
   Department prior to missives being signed with a view to minimising potential disputes.




                                                                                             33
                              ASBESTOS MANAGEMENT POLICY

Asbestos in buildings
It is important that our efforts acknowledge that much has already been documented by the
established bodies associated with the management of asbestos in buildings. The working group
have considered those information materials already published on this subject and which are
easily accessible. Existing publications including Croner‟s Asbestos Risk Management provide
easy to follow guidance which can assist Local Authorities in achieving compliance with legislation
in respect of meeting their statutory duties and responsibilities. The HSE Asbestos Awareness
Campaign also provides some very useful information that will help Council personnel to develop
their knowledge on how to achieve compliance with current asbestos legislation including the
awaited Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations 2002 (CAWR).

Useful information materials include the following;

   Introduction to Asbestos Essentials                           HSG 213
   Asbestos Essentials Task Manual                               HSG 210
   Surveying, Sampling & Assessment                              MDHS 100
   Managing Asbestos in Premises                                 INDG 223
   Working with Asbestos in Buildings                            INDG 289

The HSE advises that the proposed new Approved Codes of Practice L27, (Work with asbestos
which does not normally require a license.), and L28, (Work with asbestos insulation, asbestos
coating and asbestos insulating board), are both out for consultation at present with appropriate
organisations.

The HSE guidance series, Methods for the Determination of Hazardous Substances (MDHS 100,
Surveying, sampling and the assessment of asbestos-containing materials) also lists a number of
informative publications associated with asbestos management.

The above list is not exhaustive and there is additional asbestos management information
available from a variety of sources, including a number of helpful websites.

Of the Local Authorities in Scotland contacted by COSLA Short Life Working Group on Asbestos,
to date, six have produced copies of current documented policies and procedures for the
management of asbestos. It can be seen on examination, that all of these policies consistently
promote very positive attitudes in the area of asbestos management. The general aims and
objectives of the policies are consistent, while at the same time; the actual policies could be
viewed as inconsistent.

It is essential that Local Authorities recognise the importance of developing a sound Corporate
Policy for the management of asbestos containing materials (ACMs) in premises for which
Councils are responsible, whether owned, leased or under local Council management. In
recognition of its duties under CAWR 2002 and other legislation including the Health and Safety at
Work, etc, Act 1974 Local Authorities must consider the health & safety of its tenants, employees,
contractors, visitors, customers and members of the public within an effective asbestos
management policy.

Effective asbestos management policies must aim to ensure that the presence of asbestos does
not present an exposure risk to any person. Procedures should be developed to encourage a pro-
active approach to asbestos management, but must include procedures for a „re-active‟ or
emergency response for dealing with asbestos incidents. In addition to this, suspected asbestos
incidents must also be considered.


                                                                                                34
Sections that should be included in an Asbestos Management Policy are listed below:

      Chief Executive‟s statement of intent

      Risk management policy statement should include;

i.        How the policy will be implemented
ii.       Who will be responsible for specific aspects of the policy
iii.      How risks identified will be managed or controlled
iv.       A decision flow chart providing initial guidance on who to contact and what actions to be
          taken if asbestos is discovered or disturbed

      Corporate objectives;

i.        Develop a Council wide asbestos management strategy
ii.       Define survey prioritisation e.g. buildings occupied by young people take highest priority

      Defined corporate roles and responsibilities;

i.        Appoint an asbestos co-ordinator
ii.       Clearly define roles and responsibilities

      Risk assessment – COSHH assessment

i.        Risk assessments for all asbestos containing materials
iii.      COSHH assessments for all repair, encapsulation and removal materials

      Emergency procedures;

i.        Prepare a plan of action for asbestos and suspected asbestos incidents
ii.       State arrangements for accessing the Asbestos Register, the emergency services may
          require access
iii.      Develop a database of buildings known to contain asbestos, and make information
          available and accessible

      Health surveillance and record keeping;

i.        Document how personnel records will be held
ii.       Maintain occupational health records (to be held for forty years)
iii.      State frequency for health surveillance relative to employee‟s activities

      Employee training and re-training;

i.        Develop informative general training programme for employee‟s
ii.       Develop individual training programmes relevant to employee‟s activities or their level of
          involvement in asbestos management
iii.      Develop refresher-training and re-training programmes

      Asbestos awareness training;

                   i.    To be provided to employees at all levels
                   ii.   To be appropriate to employees involvement in asbestos management

      Air monitoring – Clearance testing – Personal monitoring;

i.        Document policy, procedures, and methods of record keeping

                                                                                                       35
      Control limits, control measures, Respiratory protective equipment (R.P.E.) and Personal
       protective equipment (P.P.E.)

i.        Carry out risk assessment and provide RPE and PPE suited to assessed exposure levels
ii.       Document inspection procedures and keep records of all inspections

      Recording methods, access arrangements and arrangements for distribution of information

i.        Preferably in electronic format (various software database packages are available);
ii.       Should be user friendly
iii.      Should be capable of producing reports or extracts from reports
iv.       Should be easily updateable
v.        Should be available on Council intranet system
vi.       Should be accessible to all who may disturb asbestos


      Material assessment algorithm table

i.        Preferably in electronic format
ii.       Must be consistent

       Note: Some software packages have their own material assessment tables that produce a risk
       assessment rating derived from, product type (or debris from product), extent of damage or
       deterioration, surface treatment, asbestos type

      Asbestos surveying and sampling strategies should be developed to ensure that Council
       procedures are compliant with MDHS 100

i.        Develop a quality system

      Asbestos analysis must be carried out by UKAS accredited laboratories

      State sections to be included in asbestos removal tender documentation, and state policy for
       monitoring removal contractors

i.        Local Authorities should clearly state requirements with which asbestos removal
          contractors must comply
ii.       Local Authorities should develop a contractor monitoring policy, which should be managed
          by appropriately qualified Council employees

      Working with asbestos

i.        Produce guidance notes stating requirements of the Council‟s management policy

      Asbestos waste management

ii.       State special waste transfer procedure requirements
iii.      State notification requirements
iv.       Ensure SEPA recommended procedures are in place
v.        Ensure record keeping and audit trail procedures are in place




                                                                                                 36
SURVEYING, SAMPLING AND ASSESSMENT OF ASBESTOS CONTAINING MATERIALS
(MDHS 100)

1.       Introduction
1.1      MDHS 100 sets out how to survey workplace premises for asbestos containing materials
         (ACMs) and how to record the results in useable form. It also gives advice on how to
         recognise and sample suspected ACMs. This guidance has been produced by the Health
         and Safety Executive (HSE) to assist people carrying out asbestos surveys. The Health
         and Safety at Work Act 1974 (HSWA) requires an employer to ensure the health and safety
         of their employees which includes the provision of a safe workplace. Work involving
         asbestos is covered by its own set of regulations the Control of Asbestos at Work
         Regulations (CAWR).

1.2      There are duties to prepare a risk assessment and to make written arrangements to protect
         those at risk in the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, the
         Workplace (Health, safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 and the Construction (Design
         and Management) Regulations 1994 are also relevant to work which may disturb ACMs.
         CAWR 2002 will create a new duty to assess and manage the risk from asbestos in
         buildings. Risks may vary from normal everyday occupation of the premises to
         circumstances which include maintenance, alteration and refurbishment. There is also the
         question of demolition. Each separate situation must be assessed, a management plan
         produced which details and records the actions to be taken to manage and reduce the risk
         of asbestos exposure. These matters are comprehensively addressed by HSE in the
         guidance document MDHS 100. An important factor for Local Authorities is the fact that
         apart from carrying out asbestos surveys they may commission others to do this. In all
         circumstances the contents of MDHS 100 should be followed. This summary gives a
         comprehensive summary of the most significant aspects of MDHS 100.


2.       Managing asbestos
2.1      The Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations 2002 (CAWR) will introduce a new duty to
         assess and manage asbestos in non domestic premises. The requirements on employers
         will be to;

                take reasonable steps to determine the location of materials likely to contain
                 asbestos

                presume materials to contain asbestos, unless there are good reasons not to do so

                make and maintain a written record of the location of the asbestos and presumed
                 asbestos materials

                monitor the condition of asbestos and presumed asbestos materials;

                assess the risk of exposure from the asbestos and presumed asbestos materials
                 and document the actions necessary to manage the risk, and

                take steps to see that the actions above are carried out.


2.2      To manage the risk from asbestos containing materials organisations will need to;

     keep and maintain an up-to-date record of the location, condition, maintenance and removal of
      all asbestos containing materials on the premises;

     repair, seal or remove, if there is a risk of exposure due to its condition or location;

                                                                                                   37
     maintain it in a good state of repair and regularly monitor the condition;

     inform anyone who is likely to disturb it about the location and condition of the material;

     have arrangements and procedures in place, so that work which may disturb the materials
      complies with CAWR, and

     review the plan at regular intervals and make changes to the plan and arrangements if
      circumstances change.

3.       Asbestos Management Programme
3.1.1     In order to have an effective Management Programme it will be necessary to have clear
         lines of responsibility for programme management and implementation.

3.2      The following is recommended to establish an effective Asbestos Management
         Programme;

            nominate a person who is given clear responsibility for overseeing and developing the
             Asbestos Management Programme. Make sure he/she has access to advise and
             training;

            conduct surveys to locate and assess the Asbestos Containing Materials (ACMs) in
             premises and record this in a form which can be easily referred to and updated;

            if ACMs are present, develop a management plan based on the survey and
             assessment results which reflect the relative risks posed by the different materials and
             their locations;

            implement the management plan so that any maintenance work will not disturb ACMs
             without following the planned precautions;

            develop appropriate control measures to reduce the risks from ACMs to other workers
             and occupants and communicate these to all relevant personnel, and

            review and update the survey and management plan at regular intervals.

4.       Asbestos Surveys
4.1      An asbestos survey has four main elements:-

            it must as far as reasonably practicable locate and record the location, extent and
             product type of any presumed or known ACMs;

            it must inspect and record information on the accessibility, condition and surface
             treatment of any presumed or known ACMs;

            it should determine and record the asbestos type, either by collecting representative
             samples of suspect materials for laboratory identification or by making a presumption
             based on the product type and its appearance etc., and

            this information must be held in a suitable, upgradeable form and should be accessible
             to and understandable by all relevant personnel.

4.2      There are three types of survey referred to in MDHS 100:-



                                                                                                     38
Type 1 - Location and Assessment Survey (Presumptive Survey)
For this survey all areas should be accessed and inspected (including above false ceilings, inside
risers, service ducts, lift shafts etc.) or must be presumed to contain asbestos. Any material which
can reasonably be expected to contain asbestos must be presumed to contain asbestos. All
materials which are presumed to contain asbestos must be assessed.

Type 2 - Standard Sampling, Identification and Assessment Survey (Sampling Survey)
The procedures used are the same as for Type 1 except that representative samples are collected
and analysed for the presence of asbestos.

Type 3 - Full Access Sampling and Identification Survey
(Pre Demolition/Major Refurbishment Surveys)
This type of survey is used to locate and describe all ACMs in the building and may involve
destructive inspection to gain access to all areas. It is designed to be used as a basis for
tendering for asbestos removal prior to demolition or major refurbishment and does not assess the
condition of the asbestos other than to note areas where debris may be present.

5.      Survey Reports Format
5.1     Survey reports must clearly identify;

           location (eg. building identifier, floor number or level, room identifier and position);

           extent (area, length, thickness and volume, as appropriate);

           product type

           level of identification (presumed, strongly presumed or identified),

           asbestos type (chrysotile, amosite, crocidolite etc).

5.2.1    If an assessment is carried out for a Type 1 or Type 2 survey, the following will also be
        recorded:-

              accessibility;

              amount of damage or deterioration, and

              surface treatment (if any).

6.      Risk Assessment
6.1     The new duty to manage under CAWR 2002 will require a written plan to be produced,
        specifying measures to be taken to control and manage the risk from identified and
        presumed ACMs. An important stage of this process is to assess the potential for fibre
        release of each ACM found.

6.2     A standardised material assessment approved suitable for Type 1 and Type 2 surveys is
        given in the MDHS 100. It is based on simplified additive algorithm for which the four main
        parameters are:-

1. product type;

2. extent of damage or deterioration;

3. surface treatment, and

                                                                                                       39
4. asbestos type. For pre demolition surveys (Type 3) no assessment is necessary.

6.3.1   The material assessment identifies the high risk materials, that is, those which will most
        readily release airborne fibres if disturbed. It does not automatically follow that those
        materials assigned the highest score in the material assessment will be the materials that
        should be given priority for a remedial action. Management priority must be determined by
        carrying out a risk assessment which will take into account factors such as;

           the location of the material;

           its extent;

           the use to which the location is put;

           the occupancy of the area;

           the activities carried on in the area, and

           the likelihood/frequency with which maintenance activities are likely to take place.


7.      Control Measures
7.1.1   Having assessed the risk from ACMs in premises there are a number of measures which
        can be implemented to control the risks. These include:-

           maintain and update log of ACMs;
           monitor condition (applies to all presumed or identified ACMs);
           restrict access/isolate;
           label or colour code;
           inform;
           train;
           define and use safe systems of work;
           operate a permit to work system;
           encapsulate;
           enclose, and
           remove.

8.      Training/Accreditation of Surveyors
        The person or persons responsible for surveying the premises have to use a high level of
        subjective assessment, and need adequate training, experience and time to carry out the
        survey. It is important that procedures used for conducting the survey, assessing and
        documenting the findings are clearly recorded. Organisations offering an asbestos survey
        service to Local Authorities should be able to comply with the standard set out in EN 45004
        (General criteria for the operation of various types of bodies performing inspection).
        Accreditation to EN 45004 for organisations undertaking asbestos surveys will be available
        from UKAS. Accreditation to ISO 17025 for organisations sampling and/or analysing
        asbestos containing materials is also currently available from UKAS. There are no barriers
        to appropriate council employees achieving any of these required accreditation standards.




                                                                                                   40
                           ASBESTOS EMERGENCY PROCEDURES

Certain issues must be addressed by Local Authorities when considering a plan of action.
These would include;


   1) Emergency Procedures should be clearly indicated, readily available and understood.

   2) Appointment of competent asbestos removal contractors who are
   3) appropriately licensed to undertake the task.

   4) Fully consider risk assessment and any available COSHH assessment

   5) Examine contractors plan or Local Authority plan of work. This should be job specific.
      Generic plans should be avoided unless they include clearly identified repeat tasks.

   6) Segregation of tenants, employees (all staff), contractors, visitors, customers, and
      members of the public.

   7) Dust suppression and personal protective equipment (PPE) to be listed, operational and
      fully tested (and results recorded).

   8) Location of air extraction plant and exhausts to be clearly indicated.

   9) Testing of enclosures to be carried out to approved standards by an appropriate person.

   10) Air Monitoring to be carried out by UKAS accredited person.

   11) All waste disposal documents covering the entire process to be complete and available for
       scrutiny

   12) Record Keeping to be updated and monitored on a regular basis.

   13) Asbestos awareness training to be made available for all appropriate employees. Re-
       training should be considered at regular intervals.

   14) Other trades should be made aware of the location of asbestos containing materials
       (ACMs). They should consult asbestos register

   15) People within premises should be made aware of the presence of ACMs in their work area.

   16) Operative welfare facilities must include a properly constructed enclosure.


Emergency action
The Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations 2002 requires employers to take actions in the case
of an escape of asbestos fibres into the workplace.
It is a requirement to keep all persons away from the affected area, excluding those who are
trained and qualified to carry out remedial work. Anyone carrying out remedial work must be
supplied with Respiratory Protective Equipment (RPE) and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
Other people who may have been be affected by the escape of fibres must be informed.

Emergency plan
The premises manager or a nominated responsible person, should prepare the emergency plan to
deal with an asbestos emergency. Measures put in place will depend on the nature of the
asbestos present, current condition, and its location.

                                                                                                41
The Emergency Plan should also identify a person to take control of the situation, this could be the
asbestos co-ordinators, they should be fully aware of the locations of emergency equipment and
have contact telephone numbers of emergency services and other expert assistance.

Responsibilities during an emergency
A decision should be made on the extent of the involvement of the asbestos co-ordinator in the
emergency situation. It may be preferable to use the appropriately trained and qualified Local
Authority personnel removal teams for an emergency, in preference to external asbestos
consultants, or contractors. This would have the advantage of flexibility, familiarity with location
and lead to a quicker on site response. If an asbestos co-ordinator is nominated, sufficient training
must be given to allow him or her to deal with any foreseeable emergencies relating to asbestos.

Accidental release of asbestos: emergency action
The steps that need to be taken if there is an unpredicted release of asbestos are the same no
matter who has responsibility for the safety of employees.
CAWR 2002
The CAWR 2002 sets control limits for asbestos exposure. In an emergency, it will not always be
possible to carry out air monitoring to determine if the control limits have been exceeded. It is
therefore necessary to treat all emergencies as though the control limits have been exceeded.

In an emergency the following action must be taken;

   1) Immediately clear all persons from the contaminated area.

   2) Inform the asbestos co-ordinator immediately.

   3) If the emergency is contained in a single area, such as a room, isolate the room by closing
      all doors and mark clearly with labels indicating the asbestos hazard.

   4) In the short-term nominate specific people with the task of prohibiting entry, and
      subsequently suitably securing the contaminated area.

   5) According to the requirements of the emergency plan, the asbestos co-ordinator or
      asbestos consultant (wearing appropriate Respiratory Protective Equipment (RPE) and
      Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)) should access the area and decide which further
      action is required.

   6) Relay information on the incident to all persons who may have been exposed to asbestos
      dust.

   7) Carry out a risk assessment before determining the method of disposal, repair/sealing and
      clearance of any loose asbestos fibres.

   8) Carry out any remedial action in accordance with legislative requirements and the job
      specific risk assessment.

   9) Keep the area clear of anyone who is not involved in the remedial action until air monitoring
      has taken place and concentration levels reduced to an acceptable level suitable for re-
      occupation.


The asbestos register and review of risk assessments
Finally, it is necessary to review the original risk assessments after an emergency. Current entries
in the asbestos registers may need to be amended and the effectiveness of the emergency plan
should be reviewed in the light of the incident.

                                                                                                  42
43
                                COMPENSATION: 3 Main Routes

The three main routes to compensation for asbestos sufferers, their families and carers are
discussed in this section of the report. An appendix to the report gives a detailed summary of the
benefits system as it applies to people who have been damaged by asbestos.

   1) Department of Work and Pensions
   State benefits are paid in respect of a prescribed industrial disease through the Industrial
   Injuries Scheme. A range of other benefits and allowances are available to cover things like
   care needs, mobility and incapacity for work.

   2) State ‘no fault’ Compensation Scheme
   This is a single payment scheme which makes payments under the Workmen‟s Compensation
   Act 1979 if no relevant employer is still in existence. These payments are only made to
   claimants who receive Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit.

   3) Civil Claims for Damages
   These are ordinary „common law’ claims (for damages). These are brought in respect of all of
   the prescribed asbestos–related diseases discussed in this report plus symptom-free pleural
   plaques and some other cancers.

Introduction
If you were exposed to asbestos and later suffer from an asbestos-related illness, as well as
having your health damaged, and the worry of knowing about the asbestos exposure, you may
lose your only source of income, the ability to work. It can come as a blow to people who have
been in work for many years when suddenly they are no longer fit and healthy enough to continue
as a wage earner. In addition to the physical or mental disability there is also the shock of a
sudden drop in regular income added to the additional costs of managing their disability.

The importance of the welfare benefits system administered by the Department of Work and
Pensions (DWP) is that state benefits can provide a regular source of weekly income for people
who are suffering from a disabling condition because of an industrial accident or prescribed
industrial disease. It is not unknown for the period of litigation prior to settlement in an asbestos
case to last four years, or longer before a payment is made. That is, assuming of course, that the
case is successful. Not all asbestos claims succeed. In recent times there have been a number of
events within the insurance industry and the financial sector which have seriously affected access
to compensation for many asbestos victims. The insolvency of insurers and the parent companies
of former asbestos manufacturers has seen the civil claims of significant numbers of people who
have been exposed to asbestos at work being placed in jeopardy.

Recent setbacks
Asbestos victims and their families have recently suffered a number of serious setbacks which
have the common thread of responsibility-avoidance running through them. These are the
attempts of major industrial corporations and insurance companies to absolve themselves from
paying compensation to asbestos victims and bereaved relatives. These legal technicalities could
have serious consequences for future claimants. Many people may be reluctant to pursue their
legal entitlement because they have been disheartened by recent events in the law courts.
Insurance companies stand to save many millions of pounds at the expense of asbestos victims
and bereaved relatives if they can avoid paying damages.

In January 2001, the largest single employers‟ liability insurer for asbestos risks, Chester Street
Insurance Holdings, claimed that they could not meet the rising number of claims from asbestos
victims. The parent company earlier sold their profitable asset Iron Trades Insurance to QBE an
Australian company ensuring that they had no profits to pay out successful asbestos claimants. It
was only after a vigorous campaign organised by MPs, MSPs, trade unionists, committed people
within the legal profession and asbestos victim support groups that a scheme was set up to

                                                                                                   44
compensate people who would have lost out. In May 2001 the government announced that the
Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) would pay out at least 90% of compensation
amounts due to claimants who were affected by this situation.

The prospect of thousands of former T & N workers suffering from asbestos-related diseases
receiving compensation are extremely bleak. On October 1st 2001 Federal Mogul the parent
company obtained a court administration order under the Insolvency Act 1986 because it wanted
to address financial difficulties caused by asbestos claims. Many asbestos victims, some living in
Scotland, are confused as to how a company which continues to generate profits can avoid their
responsibilities with the approval of the High Court. In total, Federal Mogul and its subsidiaries
currently face over 365,000 asbestos claims.

House of Lords
A ruling by the Court of Appeal, had it been allowed to remain in place would have made it
impossible for many asbestos victims to claim compensation. In a recent decision, the Court of
Appeal agreed with the theory that one asbestos fibre can cause the deadly cancer Mesothelioma.
For people who had worked for more than one employer who exposed them to asbestos (the norm
for construction and shipyard workers) in the judges‟ opinion was that they could not identify the
employer who was responsible for them contracting Mesothelioma and therefore could not claim
damages for the personal injury inflicted. Prior to this ruling, courts would award damages against
all the employers who had been responsible for the exposure on a proportional basis. The House
of Lords overturned the Court of Appeal decision and came down in favour of the Plaintiffs. This
means that the proportional arrangement which has worked well for decades is reinstated.

The above events, which have occurred recently, are an indication of the problems which may
confront asbestos victims and bereaved relatives. In many instances the outcome may be a
reduction in the amount of damages eventually received. For future asbestos victims whose former
employers take the voluntary liquidation route it may mean that no civil damages whatsoever are
paid.

Even in circumstances when a competent asbestos litigation solicitor completes the legal process
as quickly as possible, it is important that an income maximisation exercise is carried out in order
that the asbestos victim and their carer receive their full entitlement to welfare benefits and other
available assistance. It could be argued that in 'Chester Street' type situations which create
uncertainty in respect of civil damages the state benefit system is the only barrier against social
exclusion for an asbestos victim.

A comprehensive approach should be adopted when assessing and then advising on the welfare
benefit entitlement of an asbestos victim. It is important that asbestos sufferers are not simply
informed that they may have a claim for Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit (IIDB). Claimants
who are disabled through severe breathlessness, chest pains and other symptoms may well be
entitled to a range of other benefits, some of which are linked to IIDB, some are not. Claimants
may be on a low income, they may have problems with Council Tax, experiencing difficulties with
rent or mortgage payments (or arrears). Some claimants will have problems walking or going out
of doors unaccompanied. There are also issues which are specific to those people who have
reached pension age (60 for women, 65 for men), and who are on low incomes and who have
been disabled through exposure to asbestos.

Holistic approach
Claiming welfare benefits can be difficult even in the best of circumstances. For some disabled
persons who have no experience of the benefits system it can very often appear complex and
confusing. There is evidence that this uncertainty can actually discourage people from claiming in
their time of greatest need. Accurate and up to date information backed up with competent advice
and assistance can result in increased regular (weekly) income. This (in most cases) leads to an
improvement in the disabled person's quality of life and helps reduce financially driven social


                                                                                                   45
exclusion. There is also the mental anguish which can be caused to disabled people and their
carers through the worry of meeting the additional costs imposed by disability.

An holistic approach which addresses the specific needs of the disabled person is required in
order to maximise weekly income and provide information on other available services.

Exchange of information
The information required in order to meet the needs of asbestos victims could be improved by the
cross-council exchange of information and through shared experience. Best practice in the area of
service delivery may be assisted through a comprehensive training module developed to address
the specific income-maximisation needs of asbestos victims and the most common problems
faced by advisors. In addition to the state benefits training there are separate compensation,
advocacy and support services to be considered. A training module designed to equip appropriate
Local Authority staff with the information and expertise to meet the specific needs of asbestos
victims, their families and carers is required. Welfare rights, civil compensation and access to
information could be greatly improved and extended through training directed towards appropriate
Local Authority employees, Law Centres, Citizens Advice Bureaux and Trade Union legal
departments.




                                                                                                46
Pneumoconiosis Etc. (Workers' Compensation) Act 1979: Compensation for Dust Diseases

This scheme is designed to provide compensation for sufferers (or their dependants) of certain
dust-related diseases. These are people who are unable to claim damages from the employers
where the dust exposure which caused the disease occurred. The employer have gone out of
business or there is no realistic chance of pursuing a court action.

Diseases covered by the 79 Act
To be eligible for a payment under the scheme the department of Work and Pensions must accept
that you have one of the asbestos-related diseases listed below;

       Diffuse mesothelioma (asbestos related cancer)
       Pneumoconiosis (which includes asbestosis, silicosis, and kaolinosis)
       Diffuse pleural thickening (asbestos related)
       Primary carcinoma of the lung (only if accompanied by asbestosis or diffuse pleural
        thickening)
       Byssinosis (associated with cotton dust exposure)

Conditions of entitlement
       Sufferers should normally be in receipt of Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit (IIDB) in
        respect on one of the above diseases. Dependants can claim IIDB posthumously but there
        are time limits for making posthumous claims. Claims for IIDB should be made on a BI 100
        (Pn) form available from the local Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) office.

       The employers who cause or contributed towards the disease have ceased to carry on
        business, or if they are still trading, there is not a realistic chance of obtaining damages
        from those employers.
       The sufferer or dependants must not have brought any action for damages in relation to the
        disease or received an out of court settlement

Claimants should apply using form PWC1 as soon as they think they are suffering from a disease
covered by the Act. They should not await the outcome of a claim to the DWP for Industrial Injuries
Disablement Benefit (IIDB).

Payments are increased slightly each year (normally in April). The amount paid depends on the
age of the claimant and the degree of disability assessed by the DWP for IIDB purposes. There
are different scales of payment for living claimants and bereaved relatives. For a younger claimant
(37 and under) who is greatly disabled payments can be over £50,000, for an older claimant (67
and over) who is slightly disabled payments may be around £2,000. The amounts awarded to
bereaved relatives are lower than those received by living claimants.

   If in doubt about IIDB or the Pneumoconiosis Etc. (Workers' Compensation) Act 1979 seek
    advice from an experienced advisor
   If unsure about entitlement make a claim for IIDB and apply for a payment from the
    Pneumoconiosis Etc. (Workers' Compensation) Act 1979

Further information
The Department for Transport, Local Government and the Regions
Pneumoconiosis Workers' Compensation Section Health and Safety Division (HSSD)
Floor 4/13
Great Minister House
London SW1P 4DR
Free phone: 0800 279 2322

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48
                                      Civil Claims for Damages
For most people, the news that they have contracted an asbestos-related illness can be
devastating, not only for the patient, but also for those closest to them. Compensation will be the
farthest thing from their immediate thoughts. With very few exceptions, people require prompt
advice and assistance if they are to be properly compensated through the courts. The legal
process has complex rules and procedures. Many people are put off from claiming damages
because they cannot cope with the pressure of this.

Advice and assistance when making a personal injury claim against a former employer who is
responsible for an exposure to asbestos is essential. Income maximisation can be achieved by
ensuring that the appropriate state benefits are in payment. This can be crucial to improving the
quality of life for someone suffering from a disabling lung disease. Any steps taken which help
minimise financial hardship can only lead to a better all round situation.

It is important that accurate advice is available to asbestos victims and their carers. If someone is
told they have an asbestos-related condition they should make sure that the General Practitioner
or Chest Consultant tells them exactly which asbestos illness they have contracted.

Most times it will appear obvious from a person‟s work history how, when and where they were
exposed to asbestos dust at work. People who are unsure about the presence of asbestos within
their particular employment history should speak to their trade union, former colleagues and (if
possible) an asbestos victims support group.

The process of making a claim for damages against an employer can be made much easier with
the support of a trade union. All unions have arrangements with firms of solicitors who specialise in
personal injury claims. Some of these companies are expert in the field of asbestos litigation.

It is important that an early appointment is arranged with a solicitor who has proven
representation experience in asbestos cases. Most solicitors may take on an asbestos case. It is
important, however, to secure the services of a solicitor who actually specialises in this complex
area of law.

Duty of Care
In an asbestos personal injury claim it is necessary to, show that a duty of care was owed to the
injured person by whoever exposed him or her to asbestos. Normally, exposure to asbestos will
have taken place in a workplace setting in the course of employment. In these circumstances there
is a clear duty of care on the part of the employer.

It is usually possible to establish that there has been a breach of this duty of care by allowing
exposure to asbestos dust with limited, or no efforts made, to prevent this exposure. You must
prove that your asbestos disease was caused by the person(s) or organisation(s) being sued.

Employers (and employees) duties are specified in Acts of Parliament and other Regulations. For
example, the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974 and the Factories Act 1961. Failure of an employer
to comply with these Acts and other legislation can amount to a breach of the duty of care.

Damages
Damage is the physical or mental injury that you experience. In an asbestos case the pursuer will
need to establish that they suffer from an asbestos-related disease or condition. This must be
confirmed by medical evidence. Normally the solicitor acting on your behalf will send you for an
examination by a Consultant who is an expert in lung disease in order to obtain a medical report to
be used as evidence in your case. Assessing the value of a claim can be very complicated. An
experienced lawyer will assist with this and break down the different sums (heads of damage)
which make up the total amount. The heads of damage can include;

   Compensation for pain and suffering

                                                                                                    49
   Interest on compensation awarded for pain and suffering
   Loss of wages and expenses
   Interest on compensation awarded for loss of wages and expenses
   Future loss of wages
   Loss of earning capacity
   Care needs
   Medical expenses
   Special equipment to help you cope with your illness
   Loss of occupational pension

Your solicitor should explain how damages are calculated so that you can be sure that everything
has been considered.

Provisional Damages
Courts are able to award provisional damages which allow the plaintiff to return for further
damages at a later stage after the initial award of damages, provided that certain criteria are
satisfied. Your solicitor will advise on this point.

Time Limits
Personal injury claims must be brought within a specific period of time, normally three years. In
asbestos cases a 3 year limitation period usually starts on the date that the plaintiff became aware
that he or she was suffering from a condition which was potentially caused by the negligence of
another party. This very often the date that the General Practitioner or Consultant informed him or
her of the diagnosis of an asbestos-related illness. It should be noted that a „time bar‟ can very
often be successfully challenged in the courts. There are various factors that the judge takes into
account when deciding whether, or not, to exercise discretion in favour of the injured party.

Legal Costs
Asbestos victims should not decide against making a claim on the grounds of legal costs. Seek
advice. Most solicitors offer a first interview free. It may be wise to take up this option in the first
instance. If you are a member of a trade union this should be the first port of call. The time lapse
(latency period) between exposure to asbestos and the first signs of an illness can be many years.
It is important to retain trade union membership as a retired or, out of trade, member. Access to
legal assistance can include the following options;

   Trade union legal assistance
   Legal expenses insurance scheme
   Legal aid
   Conditional charge (no win no fee)

It is important that all of these options are explained before deciding which route to take. Some of
these may not be available. For example, if you have never been the member of a trade union
there is no point in considering this option.

Most people who have been exposed to asbestos do not suffer ill health. However, you may be
concerned about a previous asbestos incident. For reassurance you may wish to take the following
steps;

1. Seek legal advice as soon as possible if there is evidence that you are suffering from an
   asbestos-related illness.

2. Explain your concerns to your family doctor and ask to be referred for a chest x-ray or a CT
   scan.

3. Give your family doctor full details of your employment history


                                                                                                     50
4. If you experience respiratory problems and are concerned about a possible relationship with
   asbestos exposure, ask to see a chest specialist who has experience of work-related
   respiratory diseases. Ask your family doctor for advice.

5. Take advantage of any chest x-ray facilities that are available.

6. Stop smoking! The normal risks to your health from smoking increase significantly if you have
   been exposed to asbestos.

7. Seek advice from a Welfare Rights service on state benefits available to you.

Non-occupational exposure to asbestos
There have been many cases of exposure to members of the families of people who work with
asbestos. This can occur through asbestos being on clothing, in the worker‟s hair or even on tools
carried into the home. There have also been asbestos well publicised fatalities due to asbestos
exposures, amongst people who lived near factories manufacturing asbestos products. It may be
difficult to show a duty of care in some circumstances. The European Parliament have recently
reported on the proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council amending
council directive 83/477/EEC on the protection of workers from the risks related to exposure to
asbestos at work. The Commission are committed to examining which groups have suffered or
may suffer from non-occupational exposure to asbestos, and will on the basis of this work, make
proposals on compensation before 31 December 2003. The Parliament justify their intentions in
the following statement;

       It is important not to limit the problem of asbestos exposure to workers only. The general
       public needs to be protected from non-occupational exposure to asbestos, and those that
       already suffered need to be compensated adequately. It is therefore suggested that the
       Commission should study who suffered from non-occupational exposure in the past and
       who may be at risk in the future and should then propose adequate measures to avoid
       exposure in the future and compensation for past exposure as a complement to the issue
       of safety at work (European Parliament 22 March 2002).

This is a very important development which should be welcomed by organisations who agree that
the general public needs to be protected from non-occupational exposure to asbestos, and those
that already affected need to be compensated adequately. This European dimension is consistent
with the aims and objectives of the COSLA Short Life Working Group on Asbestos.

Recommendations
   1) Councils should ensure that the most accurate and up to date information on welfare
      benefits and other assistance is available to asbestos victims, their families and carers.

   2) Councils should ensure that Local Authority advisors are trained to an acceptable standard
      in asbestos-related compensation matters.

   3) Councils acknowledge the additional problems faced by female asbestos sufferers and
      widows in achieving compensation entitlements. Training organised for Local Authority
      advisors should address this example of gender bias.

   4) Support initiatives by the asbestos victims support groups in Scotland which highlight the
      need for a review of legislation to address the problems outlined in the above
      recommendation.

   5) Investigate funding opportunities to establish an asbestos information centre which would
      include a freephone helpline.


                                                                                                   51
6) Councils should support the development of local asbestos victims support groups in
   Scotland where a need clearly exists.

7) Councils should support Clydeside Action on Asbestos led initiatives to have Lung Cancer
   recognised as a stand alone prescribed industrial disease.




                                                                                         52
COSLA Short Life Working Group on Asbestos: Recommendations

Financial Burden imposed on Local Authorities
   1) The HSE have recently published an Incident Cost Calculator proforma sheet (please refer
      to INDG 355 “Reduce Risks – cut costs, the real cost of accidents at work” (ISBN 0 7176
      2337 8) from HSE Books). Completion of this form following any asbestos incident would
      provide an estimate of direct/incidental costs and staff time spent dealing with the
      outcomes of an asbestos event. A copy of completed sheets should be forwarded to the
      individual Local Authority‟s Asbestos Coordinator for recording purposes.

   2) The costs of all asbestos-related work should be clearly identified and information easily
      extracted from capital contracts or single priced specification work. A standard proforma
      needs to be developed for completion by Contract Administrators and forwarding to the
      Council‟s Asbestos Coordinator for recording purposes.

   3) Individual local authorities should consider using The Highland Council „asbestos diary‟
      methodology as a model which will allow local government in Scotland to gather accurate
      information on the financial burden placed on Local Authority budgets through the
      presence of asbestos in Council premises.

   4) Recording methods should include timescales and degree of risk as they apply to individual
      asbestos projects with the Local Authority.

   5) Local Authorities should be advised to adopt an asbestos cost recording method which
      covers all Council departments and services.

   6) Investigate European funding opportunities in conjunction with the COSLA Brussells office.

   7) An approach should be made to the Scottish Executive in order secure financial assistance
      to meet the financial burden place on Local authorities in Scotland through the presence of
      asbestos in Council premises.

   8) A Local Authority asbestos consortium should be established in order to provide benefits in
      respect of environmental safety, best practice and most cost-effective methods of asbestos
      management.

   9) The presence of asbestos in schools should remain a high priority concern for Local
      Authorities in Scotland. An approach should be made to the Scottish Executive in order to
      secure assistance.

   10) Owner occupiers should be made aware of best practice if their properties are among
       those requiring asbestos-related work to be carried out. This may include providing a list of
       approved contractors and a summary of the consequences of engaging inappropriate
       contractors.

   11) The production of a comprehensive advice brochure which deals with asbestos in the
       home should be considered. A short publication could cover a wide range of the asbestos-
       related issues which may cause concern to tenants and home owners.


Benefits and Compensation
   1) Councils should ensure that the most accurate and up to date information on welfare
       benefits and other assistance is available to asbestos victims, their families and carers.

   2) Councils should ensure that Local Authority advisors are trained to an acceptable standard
      in asbestos-related compensation matters.

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   3) Councils acknowledge the additional problems faced by female asbestos sufferers and
      widows in achieving compensation entitlements. Training organised for Local Authority
      advisors should address this example of gender discrimination.

   4) Support initiatives by the asbestos victims support groups in Scotland which highlight the
      need for a review of legislation to address the problems outlined in the above
      recommendation.

   5) Investigate funding opportunities to establish an asbestos information centre which would
      include a freephone helpline.

   6) Councils should support the development of local asbestos victims support groups in
      Scotland where a need clearly exists.

   7) Support Clydeside Action on Asbestos led initiatives to have Lung Cancer recognised as a
      stand alone prescribed industrial disease.

Asbestos Containing Textured Coatings
   1) The management of asbestos content decorative texture coatings will continue to present
      problems for Local Authorities in Scotland for some time to come. These materials are
      mainly (though not exclusively) found in domestic premises. Cross council collaboration on
      new developments and techniques in the management of texture coatings would assist the
      achievement of best practice in areas of community safety and the cost effective
      management of these materials.

   2) Appropriate advice and guidance on asbestos content decorative texture coatings,
      including exercising caution in certain aspects of DIY, should be made available to tenants
      and homeowners.

   3) Local Authorities should identify a point of contact should further advice on asbestos
      containing materials be required.

   4) Local Authorities should inform subsequent new tenants to a house, likely to contain, or
      confirmed as, containing asbestos material that such material exists or is likely to exist.

   5) Where a tenant notifies an interest in purchasing their house, and that house is likely to, or
      has been confirmed as, containing asbestos material, relevant information on the material
      should be provided to them. This may include location, type and condition of asbestos.

   6) Full information on the presence of asbestos should be given to the Council‟s Legal
      Department prior to missives being signed with a view to minimising potential claims or
      disputes.


Training
   1) Each Local Authority should bring forward:

       Asbestos awareness and practical training for Local Authority maintenance staff,
       apprentices and trainees
      Asbestos awareness training for head teachers, janitors, unit managers, concierges and
       other appropriate Local Authority personnel
      Asbestos awareness training for Local Authority corporate management

   2) Each local authority should consider appropriate Asbestos awareness training for Local
      Authority elected members

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   3) Training of appropriate Local Authority staff to accredited standards in asbestos surveying
      and associated tasks

   4) A training module designed to equip appropriate Local Authority staff with the information
      and expertise to meet the specific needs of asbestos victims, their families and carers to be
      developed.

Contractors
  1) Local Authorities should review how they initially approve and subsequently monitor
      contractors. Particular emphasis to be placed on the legal duties of licensed asbestos
      removal contractors.

   2) Contractor management programmes must also include sub-contractors appointed by
      departments. For example, sub-contractors to Direct Labour Organisations (DLOs).

   3) Local Authority contractor vetting programmes should consider both licensed and non-
      licensed work with asbestos. This is a crucial component of an effective procedure in view
      of the number of potential asbestos incidents which can occur during general maintenance,
      alteration and refurbishment work.

   4) Contractor vetting programmes should recognise that an asbestos removal contractor may
      be acting as a sub-contractor to a main contractor.

   5) Councils should ensure that submissions requested in the vetting process for contractors
      engaged in asbestos removal should routinely include, at least, the following information;

      Copy of appropriate Asbestos Licence
      Copy of current Employers‟ liability insurance cover
      Copy of current Public liability insurance cover
      Demonstrate a level of financial stability
      Membership of trade association(s)
      Training records including details of refresher training
      Details of vetting procedures for sub-contractors
      Relevant Risk Assessments (recognising the limitations of generic assessments and
       insisting on contract specific assessments where appropriate once the tender has been
       awarded)
      Relevant COSHH assessments
      Details of HSE prosecutions, prohibition notices or improvement orders
      Quality assurance procedure
      Evidence of independence, impartiality and integrity
      Demonstrate experience, expertise and ability to meet contractual requirements

   6) Monitoring of contractors should include unannounced site visits to confirm and monitor
      health and safety performance.

   7) Contractors who fail to submit information requested for vetting purposes should not be
      included on approved lists.

   8) Councils should undertake to remove from recommended lists those contractors who fail to
      meet the health and safety standards stipulated in the approval process.
   9) Councils should undertake to remove from recommended lists those contractors who fail to
      re-submit information for the purpose of reviews.




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10) Councils should undertake to make above information known to other Scottish Local
    Authorities.

11) Council should provide contractors and its own sub-contractors with information regarding
    asbestos awareness in addition to general health & safety procedures on council sites.

12) Councils should provide specific information on the location of any known asbestos
    containing materials on a particular work site.

13) Contractors and sub-contractors on approved lists should be reviewed at a period not
    exceeding 3 years to ensure that all information held is accurate and up-to-date.

14) Councils should consider working towards a Scotland-wide contractor vetting and
    management programme in order to minimise duplication of effort, achieve economies of
    scale and maximise shared best practice.

15) Site analysts should be independent from asbestos contractors and should be employed by
    the client.




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