March 9, 2017

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Contractor fined for poor asbestos assessment

A Bedfordshire based contractor has been fined after failing to carry out suitable assessment of asbestos removal work.

Luton Magistrates Court heard how Anthony West was contracted to complete demolition work at a building in Biggleswade. Mr West then had a pre-demolition asbestos survey carried out for the building.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) had the demolition work reported to 16 April 2015 by a member of the public which prompted an investigation into the work.

“Duty holders have the responsibility to ensure that adequate assessments take place to avoid the risk of asbestos exposure. This includes checking the accuracy and clarity of any information provided by others – HSE

The investigation found that Mr West did not adequately check the pre-demolition asbestos survey before carrying out the work, and did not follow advice to use a licensed asbestos removal contractor.

Mr West, from Bedford pleaded guilty to breaching sections 5,7,8 and 16 of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012  and has been fined £2970 and ordered to pay costs of £5419.

Speaking after the hearing HSE inspector Alison Outhwaite said: “The safety failings in this case could have led to severe illness in later years.

“West not only put himself at risk to exposure but potentially to fellow workers and members of the public walking past.

“Duty holders have the responsibility to ensure that adequate assessments take place to avoid the risk of asbestos exposure. This includes checking the accuracy and clarity of any information provided by others.”

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