Owner Builders and Asbestos
As owner builder students, you need to be well versed in your obligations in respect to any asbestos containing materials (ACM)found on you site or disturbed as a result of the work on your project.
Legislation is quite specific in regards to ACM, its handling and disposal.
Safework Queensland provides a range of resources and fact sheets to assist our owner builder students to meet their obligations under the relevant legislation.
In addition, Safework Australia has developed a series of Model Codes of Practice which included, How to Safely Remove Asbestos.
It provides a complete set of definitions and outlines procedures to be followed when removing small (less than 10 Sam) of ACM.
I encourage all of my owner builder course participants to download this model code and refer to it if they suspect they may encounter ACM during their works.
The problems with ACM generally occur when the material is disturbed.
The loose particle become airborne and if not controlled, pose a risk to anyone exposed to the contaminated environment.
The particles enter through the respiratory system and can cause irreparable damage to the lungs.
Be careful to ensure you isolate and control the ACM risk and where there exists any doubt or concern, contact a professional removalist, at least for advice.
Approved disposal facilities and techniques are also covered in the code.
Do yourself a favour and download it for future reference.
To all my owner builders, take care and don't risk exposing yourself, your loved ones, your workers or public to this real threat.
Till next time,
Rick Heaton is a Building and Construction Industry professional with formal tertiary qualifications in management and training.