What is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a naturally occurring fibrous material that can be found in any building where construction pre-dates 2000. This can include houses, schools, offices, hospitals as well as factories. Asbestos increased in popularity as a construction material from the 1950s. It is one of the most toxic materials to have been in used in construction in the last century and its use has now been banned within the EU.
Despite being a hazardous material, Asbestos can only pose a risk to health if the asbestos fibres become airborne and are inhaled. The HSENI recommend that Asbestos which is in good condition should usually be left undisturbed. A specialist, licensed contractor must be used when it is necessary to remove it.
Asbestos is a hidden killer and can cause mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, asbestosis and pleural thickening. Although these diseases do not affect the individual immediately, once detected it is often too late to treat.
Our role as an Asbestos Removal Contractor
The HSENI recommend that Asbestos which is in good condition should usually be left undisturbed. A specialist, licensed contractor must be used when it is necessary to remove it. This is because disturbance of certain types of asbestos products can give rise to significant health risks. The law requires that work with the most hazardous forms of asbestos can only be carried out by companies who have obtained a licence for such work from Health & Safety Executive Northern Ireland (HSENI). This licensing regime ensures the highest standards of asbestos control and protection for workers and the public.
AAES is an HSENI licence holder as well as a licensed carrier of hazardous waste. This means that we are qualified to carry out all Asbestos removal works as well as disposing of the waste produced as part of the removal process. As a condition of our licence, we are subject to routine site inspections to ensure that our work is of the necessary standard.
AAES are experts at all types of Asbestos removal and treatment and have over 20 years industry experience. We are committed to continually improving our removal techniques to ensure that our practices are fully compliant with HSENI best practice. Our operatives receive continuous training, both on and off the job and we employ the services of an independent and fully qualified Health & Safety Consultant for all projects to ensure that all works are carried out in accordance with HSENI standards.
As per HSE guidance the following materials should only be worked on by a licensed asbestos contractor:
⦁ Asbestos loose fill insulation
⦁ Asbestos sprayed coating, known as limpet
⦁ Pre-formed insulation e.g. asbestos pipe lagging
⦁ Asbestos insulating board (AIB) e.g. removing ceiling tiles or panels
⦁ Where the job takes more than two hours from start to finish
⦁ Large amounts of asbestos-containing debris or material e.g. clearing up after a fire, flood or water leak
Examples where removal of asbestos will be necessary include:
⦁ before the demolition of a building
⦁ before maintenance or refurbishment work which may disturb ACMs
⦁ where ACMs are damaged
⦁ where ACMs are vulnerable to damage by the normal day-to-day activities in the building
⦁ where a change in the use of a building may make ACMs more prone to damage
As a registered carrier with the Department of the Environment for hazardous materials, we are able to safely transport and dispose of potentially hazardous waste. At AAES we can provide guidance to our clients about the requirements for the movement of hazardous waste, provide the necessary materials for safe packaging, and safely package all hazardous waste and transport to a registered landfill site.
As a carrier of hazardous waste, we must not only meet the requirements of the Controlled Waste (Duty of Care) Regulations (NI) 2002 but also comply with the strict legal controls contained in the Hazardous Waste Regulations (NI) 2005, as amended by the 2011 regulations. In practice, when we transfer waste we must produce a consignment note which is signed and a copy kept by all parties involved in the process. Any breach of these regulations is an offence and the waste transfer process is strictly monitored by the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA).
The service we offer will:
⦁ Provide up-to-date information concerning rapidly-changing legislation
⦁ Classify waste streams
⦁ Select approved routes for disposal/recycling
⦁ Arrange collections
⦁ Monitor disposal and recycling rates
⦁ Collate, manage documentation and statistics