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this is just one of many dangers tradesmen has to deal with from day to day work  

Shopfitters fined £4k after Manchester asbestos exposure

Eastern Regional Shopfitters has been fined £4,000 after five workers were exposed to potentially deadly asbestos fibres at the Arndale Centre in Manchester in October 2009.photos, videos, addons, whatever you want!

 23 August 2010

A building contractor is facing a bill of almost £4,000 after workers disturbed asbestos in a primary school while lessons were being taught next door. Stratford-upon-Avon Magistrates’

  1. Building firm fined after asbestos disturbed at primary school
  1. Building firm fined after asbestos disturbed at primary school

A Solihull building firm has been fined £1,000 after failing to take precautions against asbestos while working at a school.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuted the company after bosses at Greswolde Construction Ltd  of Station Road, Knowle, failed to warn its employees that the substance was present despite being in possession of a survey detailing where the asbestos was.

The company pleaded guilty to a breach of regulation 10(1) and one of 11(1)(a) of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2006. As well as the fine it was also ordered to pay £2,268 costs.

Stratford-upon-Avon Magistrates Court heard how on 9 July 2009 the firm was contracted to carry out building work on an extension at Rokeby Primary School in Rugby.

Three employees were carrying out the work when they disturbed an area containing asbestos. Despite the company being in possession of a Type 3 Asbestos Survey detailing the materials that were disturbed, and the fact that children were occupying adjacent classrooms, it still gave the go ahead for the workers to begin to strip out the area.

None of workers had been informed of the presence of asbestos on the site and had not received asbestos awareness training or protection.

HSE inspector Paul Cooper said:

"The dangers of asbestos are well known in the building industry so for the managers of Greswolde Construction not to inform their employees of its presence shows a complete disregard for their safety and wellbeing.

"What makes it worse is that this work was being carried out in a primary school where young children were in the next room.

"We can't stress enough how important it is for anyone carrying out building work to obtain the prop

  1. Ship breakers fined for potential asbestos exposure
  1. Ship breakers fined for potential asbestos exposure

A North Lincolnshire ship breaking company put its workers and others at risk of exposure to asbestos containing materials, a court heard.

Marine reclamation company Acetech Construction Limited, purchased a Polish former fishing vessel "The Patricia III" in 2007 for dismantling and selling on as scrap. The ship, built in the 1970s, had been lying unused at Grimsby Dock for around three years.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found Acetech had failed to carry out an adequate survey that would have highlighted the presence of asbestos containing materials before employees began work on the boat.

Scunthorpe magistrates heard that between 1 December 2007 and 29 February 2008, work took place to strip down the boat resulting in several employees potentially exposed to asbestos containing materials.

Acetech Construction Ltd, of New Green Farm, Marsh Lane, Barrow Haven, was fined £3,400 and ordered to pay £5,000 costs after pleading guilty to three breaches of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2006 at Scunthorpe Magistrates Court.

After the hearing HSE Inspector Kirsty Welsh said:

"Asbestos is responsible for around 4,000 deaths each year so it's vitally important that workers are protected. You might not know what damage has been caused by exposure, or the numbers of people who may have been affected, until much later, if at all, but identifying dangerous materials and removing them safely and responsibly is essential in order to eliminate all possible risk.

"Had Acetech Construction carried out a full survey, assessed the risks and put in place systems to protect their workers, then any potential harm would have been avoided."er asbestos surveys and then act upon them."


Case Studies

Asbestos Watchdog has saved thousands of domestic property owners vast sums of money by its practical and impartial advice.

The following are just a selection of examples:

  1. A large estate in Bradford was up for probate but a solicitor was withholding over £1,000,000 for possible asbestos claims from ex-employees. Asbestos Watchdog was called in and was able to prove conclusively that there never could have been any fibre release likely to cause any risk to health.
  2. A domestic property owner was quoted £5,850 to remove approximately 2 metres of asbestos lagging. After a discussion with Asbestos Watchdog, the property owner called in another licensed contract making them aware of their contact with us. The second quote was for £300.
  3. A domestic property owner was quoted £4,000 for asbestos removal in their home; Asbestos Watchdog was able to intervene and the original contractor hastily revised his estimate to a more satisfactory £2,650.
  4. A very concerned Sunday Express reader had worried for years about a wooden fireplace with asbestos stuck to the back that they had helped saw. Although only being exposed for a few minutes, the scare stories in the newspapers and TV sparked a chain of anxiety which had lasted for 20 years. Asbestos Watchdog's article in the Sunday Express was able to help more than 20 years of trying to find reassurance

    Asbestos dumped on pavement during church demolition

    Grant Prior | Wed 9th February | 7:02

    Shocked safety inspectors found demolition rubble containing asbestos spilling out onto a pavement during work to knock-down an old church in Snodland, Kent.

    HSE inspectors were acting on a tip-off from a worried member of the public who alerted them to the bodged demolition project.

    Maidstone Magistrates’ Court heard the site was owned by Bernard Berry of Berry Estates Development Limited who were also carrying out the demolition of the building.

    On 23 April 2010, two HSE inspectors attended the site and discovered the majority of the building had already been demolished but debris containing asbestos was blocking the pavement on one side and had also spilled out onto the pavement on the other side.

    Principal contractor Berry could not provide paperwork for a demolition plan, method statements or risk assessments. No asbestos survey had been completed prior to the demolition and site security was very poor. A Prohibition Notice was served preventing any further work onsite.

    After the notice was served Berry commissioned a pre-demolition asbestos survey, which highlighted a number of asbestos containing materials across the site.

    A HSE investigation showed that the building was being knocked into pedestrian areas and broken up with an excavator. It showed no evidence of employee training, no personal protection or respiratory equipment and no plan of work on site. It also revealed no provision to prevent dust spreading during demolition and crushing.

    David Fussell, HSE Inspector, said: ”The company failed to take any measures aimed at controlling the workers’ exposure to asbestos and reduce any future incidence of related diseases.

    “This is a shocking case as it was foreseeable that a building of this age may have had asbestos-containing materials in the building fabric, as the subsequent survey highlighted.

    “If the company had carried out a survey and prepared a plan of work prior to demolition, the risk of exposure to the workers onsite or the general public could have been avoided.”

    Berry Estates Development Limited, of Red Hill, Wateringbury, Maidstone, Kent, pleaded guilty to breaching asbestos regulations and was fined £10,000 and ordered to pay costs of £3,391.

    Bernard Berry, director of the company also pleaded guilty to breaching the same regulations and was fined £5,000 and ordered to pay costs of £3,391.

    Fine for asbestos buried on farm land

    Fine for asbestos buried on farm land
    A farmer who buried potentially lethal asbestos on his land has been ordered to cough up more than £10,000 in fines and costs.

    Last week Worksop Magistrates Court heard Anthony Bealby plead guilty to burying 2.3 tonnes of asbestos at Grange Farm, Lindrick Road, Woodsetts.

    The court heard a series of visits by Environment Agency inspectors between November 2009 and February 2010 eventually found asbestos buried on land.

    Bealby of Nidd Lane, Birstwith, Harrogate, took down a barn on Grange Farm with an asbestos laden roof for 'financial reasons'.

    He admitted cutting corners, saving more than £1,300 in proper disposal costs, by burying the waste instead of paying for it to be properly disposed of.

    In June 2010 a land registry search confirmed Bealby had sold the land, but the asbestos was only removed this month following action by the Environment Agency.

    Bealby was fined £6,500 and ordered to pay £3,500 in costs, along with a £15 victim surcharge.

    Speaking after the case, a spokesman for the Environment Agency: "It is important the disposal of waste is regulated to ensure it does not endanger the environment.

    "In this case the hazardous material was disposed of without any consideration for human health or the environment to avoid the true cost of its proper disposal."


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