Asbestos re-inspections are vital to ensure the condition of any asbestos containing materials are adequate for normal building use. Although asbestos was often used to improve the durability of building products, over time, the material may begin to deteriorate and begin to break-down. When this happens, the potential for fibre release is increased.
As asbestos only poses a threat once fibres are released into the atmosphere, it is important that any identified materials are not disturbed or damaged. An asbestos re-inspection survey should be carried out annually to ensure materials are in a suitable condition for how the building is currently being used.
What Happens During Re-Inspections?
Once a surveyor arrives on site, they will usually report to the designated person responsible for managing any asbestos materials. Then, in a methodical manner, the surveyor will visit each asbestos containing material identified, either in the asbestos management survey, or in previous re-inspection reports.
When each material location is visited, it will be photographed and documented. At the same time, the surveyor will make an assessment as to the condition of the material and provide recommendations for how it should be monitored in the future. Materials which are deemed to have deteriorated or become damaged, may be recommended to either be encapsulated or removed by a suitable asbestos removal contractor.
Once all materials have been photographed, documented and assessed, a revised report will be produced and sent to the duty holder.
Why is an Asbestos Re-Inspection Important?
An asbestos re-inspection is designed to spot potential problems with materials that may pose a threat to people living or working near or within a building.
Although an asbestos management survey (or a previous re-inspection) shows the location and condition of a material, they only do so at that particular point in time. Like all buildings, materials are subject to wear and tear and can become damaged. The difference with asbestos containing materials (ACMs) is that once damaged, they have the potential to release fibres and pose a threat.
Keeping up-to-date with the condition of ACMs is of great importance for ensuring peoples’ safety and well-being. Re-inspections should be carried out every 12 months, unless an asbestos surveyor has deemed a material to pose a potential risk during that period.