The quick guides of the asbestos register; what, why, and how?
What is the asbestos register?
This is a document that provides detailed information of where asbestos has been identified in a workplace (Safework AU). Briefly, the document should:
- Provide information of where fibre has been identified inside your property. It is also recommended to include locations of assumed asbestos or doubtful material.
- Provide information on when they were identified
- Record the condition and type (friable or bonded) of fibre
- Be maintained and updated with new information
- State if no fibre was found inside the premises
- Be given to the manager or person in charge, when there is a change in the company’s management.
The document example for the workplace
|Person in charge:|
James Moore (Manager)
|Date of identification||Location||Friable or bonded?||Condition||Specific location||Is this in an accessible area?|
|13 July 2015||Pipe insulation||Friable||Cracked at bends in pipe||Plant room: beside boiler water system||Only can be accessed by maintenance staff|
|16 September 2015||Roof sheeting||Bonded||Minor deterioration eastern end||The whole roof of workshop rooms||Accessible, may be damaged in 5 years|
|And so on….|
Identified ACM must be labelled, for example, the label can be placed near an electrical meter box or on the wall. The label should state the location of identified fibres and also the report. It is also recommended to use drawings or figures to show the location of fibres. By doing so, you will be one step forward in protecting people from the harmful effect of airborne fibre.
Why you need it?
A person who is in charged for controlling and managing the workplace should have kept the asbestos register in the workplace (HSE, UK). So if you are the operational manager of a company, you might have to make and keep this document. You might not need them if you had a survey beforehand and no fibre was found. Else, if fibre was found at your workplace from a survey, you have to create this document. The written report can be created either individually or by a surveyor, depends on the size of the premises (For details, see the figure below). In other words, this document is very important for any asbestos removal project, as same as the asbestos testing procedure.
- Small premises
- eg. less than 25 employees, workshop, shop, office
- Independent inspection is often sufficient by following a guideline
- Large premises
- eg. more than 25 employees, factory, many workrooms
- You may have to employ an asbestos surveyor
The regulatory body also recommends having a management plan in your property besides the register. A management plan provides detailed information about risk assessments and control measures that needed to be taken when fibres have been identified within your building. It is necessary to keep both documents, in case the legal authority conducted an inspection for fibres in your building.
How to create an asbestos register?
As mentioned before, if own small premises, you can create the report by yourself. Here is an easy guide on how to create it properly:
- Obtain a copy or draw a plan of the building
- Inspect the building by walking around and take a look closer at walls, roofs, or water systems as they highly likely to contain asbestos-containing materials (ACM)
- Ask a help from someone else, the second pair of eye is usually helpful
- Mark on the plan of places or area that might contain fibres
- Print a blank/template of the written report (you can download it from here: http://www.hse.gov.uk/asbestos/assets/docs/blankregister.pdf)
- Note down materials that might contain fibres and also their condition
- When you can’t access several places within the building, you should also note it down
- When you are finished, report and put all necessary information
- Add the date and also sign the document. And you are officially finished!
When a survey has been conducted, you can skip step 1 to 5, and start to fill the report with information from the survey. But if you own large premises, you should seek help and advice from an asbestos surveyor to do the whole process. By doing this entire process, you ensure the safety and health of people in your workplace!