VHE Support Latest CIRIA Asbestos Good Practice Site Guide
22 February 2017
The likelihood of encountering asbestos or asbestos containing materials on former use sites is well known to those in the remediation industry. However the approaches to establishing and identifying risks to site workers are complicated where the likelihood and concentration of any airborne fibres is dependent on so many factors including asbestos type, whether it’s contained in another material e.g. cement bound sheeting, it’s condition, depth, distribution as well as the nature of the soil, it’s moisture and the proposed works which will all have an impact on the potential release of harmful airborne fibres.
Generally the accepted hierarchy of health and safety risk management applies to works with asbestos in soil and made ground, including waste from processed construction and demolition materials. However, the particular nature of asbestos requires project teams to understand the risks involved and to be able to access them and provide control measures to ensure workers, staff members and members of the public are not exposed.
The Control of Asbestos Regulations (CAR2012) which came into force on the 6 April 2012, updating CAR2006 and replacing the former Asbestos Prohibitions (1999) and Asbestos Licensing Regulation (1998), provides clear instructions (along with the Approved Code of Practice L143) on the definitions between licensable and non-licensable activities and mandatory requirements for the training of all those involved.
The CIRIA report C733 Asbestos in Soil and Made Ground: a guide to understanding and managing risks, published in 2014 provided an excellent summary of the overall legislative context of the Regulations as they relate to asbestos found in soil and made ground, along with guidance for conceptual site modelling, appropriate risk assessment and risk communication.
The report is, however, lengthy, running to almost 200 pages. The need for a site guide to be used by site management and understood by all those likely to encounter asbestos on former use sites was seen as clearly beneficial.
VHE supported CIRIA throughout 2016 in the development of the Asbestos in soil and made ground good practice site guide and are proud of the recent publication, written by Phil Studds and Mark Bell of Ramboll Environ.
All of VHE management and staff receive appropriate information, training and instruction on identification and risk management specific to asbestos in soils and made ground from desk study through site investigation to remediation and site infrastructure activities.