24 Oct 2022
Despite being outlawed in construction over 20 years ago, it is still one of the biggest workplace killers in existence. This highly dangerous material is known to lead to fatal illnesses, with 78% of all occupational cancers in the EU being associated with it.
In 2019 alone, over 70,000 EU workers died from exposure to asbestos fibres and the average time for symptoms to manifest is some 30 years. 220 million buildings were built prior to the ban on asbestos, meaning improper asbestos removal and disposal represents a significant danger during renovation works.
Providing Modern Living Conditions
Of course, renovations are needed in established buildings to provide modern, healthier living conditions and improve energy efficiency, however, if the proper attention isn’t paid to the risks of asbestos, tradesmen are the most likely to be affected.
Unless asbestos surveys are carried out prior to any work carried out, along with the appropriate asbestos monitoring and control measures in place, anyone in the vicinity risks mesothelioma which can happen when just a single microscopic fibre is inhaled.
Energy Performance of Buildings Directive
The EU Energy Performance of Buildings Directive is a driving force behind many renovations occurring across Ireland, as member states are required to provide healthy indoor environments. It calls for the removal of asbestos as part of energy performance upgrades, but in every case, asbestos removal and disposal must be strictly controlled.
Aside from the obvious human cost, failing to adhere to vital asbestos regulations also comes at a financial price, as can be seen in the news. €12,000 was the fine imposed on a Portadown Skip Hire company that flouted guidelines and unnecessarily spread asbestos, putting many people at risk.
The Battle Against Asbestos Continues
The dangers of asbestos exposure are as real now as they’ve ever been, meaning that everyone needs to understand how to identify it and what to do when its existence is suspected. As such, you should do nothing but step back and get in touch with us for further advice.
For more information on the asbestos services we offer at OHSS, visit us online today at www.ohss.ie. Alternatively, to speak to a member of our team, call 01 6905907 and we’ll help in any way we can.