If you’re thinking of a new extension, a bit of remodelling, or finally knocking down that old garage, have you checked for asbestos? Any property built or refurbished before 2000 could potentially contain ACMs (Asbestos Containing Materials). Commonly found in corrugated roofing sheets, it was also widely used in artex-type paint coatings, insulation material, floor tiles, other construction material, fixtures and fittings. Left undisturbed, these materials don’t present a health risk. However, when damaged the fibres easily become airborne and can be inhaled. Exposure to these microscopic fibres can lead to severe lung disease and cancer. In the UK, around 5000 deaths a year are linked to asbestos exposure, and it can take years for symptoms to develop. Invisible to the naked eye and normally blended with other substances, professional testing is needed to ensure asbestos is dealt with safely.
Somerset Scientific Services, part of Somerset County Council, offer free impartial asbestos advice as part of our commitment to public health and safety. We also offer an expert service to identify and project manage the removal of any ACMs. Samples of suspect material can be sent to our lab for analysis and we’ll provide impartial advice on your next steps if asbestos is identified. For larger projects surveys can be completed on site by our specialist asbestos team if needed.
Call the team or visit our website for expert advice – and to find out what other services we provide.