Many homes in the UK have Asbestos in and around them, and unless it is damaged it is perfectly safe. Removing it is also safe when done correctly and regulations are adhered to.
What is asbestos?
Asbestos is a natural rock.
When crushed it turns into small fibres that look like needles of glass under a microscope.
Asbestos was used for many purposes until recently. Its properties mean it is a very good insulation of heat and electricity, can be turned into useful roofing tiles, flooring tiles, and added to plaster in textured ceilings such as Artex decorative coating.
However, we now know asbestos is dangerous and the needle like fibres cause terrible illnesses when asbestos containing materials are damaged, the fibres can release and are easily inhaled. In the UK asbestos is no longer used, but many millions of buildings still have asbestos in them.
There are 3 main types of asbestos, white, brown and blue. White is not too bad, but brown and blue are very dangerous.
The type of asbestos most commonly found in UK homes is white.
How can asbestos hurt me?
Asbestos is only dangerous if the fibres are breathed in and get into your respiratory system allowing to cause illness.
Associated illnesses caused by asbestos exposure are:
- Asbestos-related lung cancer
- Pleural thickening
The types of asbestos-containing materials found in the home are usually relatively low risk. i.e a floor tile or textured decorative coating, however once damaged may need to be removed.
Do I have to move any of my garage contents or fittings?
It depends on whether or not any of the items have been directly affected by the asbestos-containing material, if they have, they will need to be cleaned by the removal contractor and should not be moved.
Items that have not been exposed to the asbestos-containing material should be removed before the removal contractors arrive on site.
This includes items such as vehicles, ladders, boxes, garden furniture etc. If you have difficulties moving things, then please discuss this in advance with your SCI policyholder liaison officer. If any items of furniture cannot be removed prior to the asbestos removal works then every precaution will be taken to protect it.
What about me, my family and pets?
As there will be a number of people working in the property, and therefore going in and out to the company vehicle for equipment, we advise that wherever possible people are not present in or near the working area. We only require one person to be present during the works; please keep all children and pets away from the work area.
What about my fittings and plants?
We will try not to disturb or damage any fittings or plants growing in the garage.
When you remove the asbestos, will I be safe from exposure?
Yes. Our team will protect you totally.
To keep our team safe, even though the risk is low, they will wear coveralls and respiratory protective equipment.
Please stay out of the work area until the removal is complete.
We will then safely take the asbestos waste materials away and correctly dispose of.