2015-02-13  

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More Training in Dealing with Killer Asbestos Needed

Following a Health & Safety Executive investigation, magistrates fined an unscrupulous roofing contractor £10,000 for handling asbestos at a farm without the correct certification or training.

In dealing with the asbestos improperly staff were exposed to deadly cancer causing spores.

Old Broken Asbestos Roof Sheets

Old Broken Asbestos Roof Sheets

Craig Evans, General Manager of the UK Asbestos Training Association (UKATA) reminds people of the dangers of asbestos and that it’s important that only those with the correct training should handle it.

"Asbestos, which is still the biggest workplace killer in the UK, causes the rare and incurable form of lung cancer known as mesothelioma. The danger occurs when materials containing asbestos are disturbed or damaged, leading to the deadly spores of the ‘hidden killer’ to be released into the atmosphere where they are inhaled. It’s important that those in the construction trade likely to come into contact with asbestos know how to identify it and deal with it safely."

"Dealing with asbestos without the full training and knowledge can lead to putting both your own health and the health of those around you in jeopardy – that’s the reason why the Health & Safety Executive continue to dish out fines" he said.

Asbestos related diseases are not just an ‘old man’s’ problem

Last years Emmerdale storyline featuring a young girl diagnosed with Mesothelioma is welcome, as it helps organisations like UKATA challenge the commonly held view that asbestos related diseases like Mesothelioma are a thing of the past and an old man’s disease - when thanks to asbestos, nothing could be further from the truth.

While thankfully rare for one so young as the Donna Windsor character (played by Verity Rushworth) to develop an asbestos related illness, this is because Mesothelioma usually take decades to develop, but it does happen and with no known cure, the illness is terminal.

With estimates suggesting over 1.5 million buildings in the UK still contain asbestos, including schools, flats and as many as 50,000 farm buildings, the Emmerdale storyline was relevant. Whilst it does not cause any harm left undisturbed, if damaged when removed during building work or when crumbling materials release asbestos dust, when inhaled it can be a killer.

UKATA

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