Unlicensed asbestos removal leads to fines for Teesside contractors

While working on a property in Hamsterley between the 10th and 12th July 2016, two contractors exposed pipework that was wrapped in asbestos lagging. The type of asbestos lagging found can legally only be removed by a licensed asbestos removal contractor, with trained employees, under fully controlled conditions.

A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found that tests had confirmed the presence of asbestos, and the contractors did not have the necessary licence for removal. Despite this, they continued to remove the pipework and lagging, putting themselves and the homeowner at risk of exposure to harmful asbestos fibres.

Brian Barry of Ponteland, Newcastle-upon-Tyne pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and was fined £576 and ordered to pay costs of £847.

David Storey of Prudhoe, Northumberland, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and was fined £692 and ordered to pay costs of £844.

After the hearing at Teesside Magistrates’ Court, HSE Inspector Andrea Robbins said:

"Asbestos is responsible for the premature deaths of approximately 5,000 workers each year. In this case,it was foreseeable that, in the absence of measures to reduce asbestos fibres from becoming airborne during removal of the pipe lagging, persons were at risk of being exposed to them."

BLS Asbestos are a HSE licensed asbestos removal contractor with over 30 years’ experience in the safe removal of asbestos from homes, commercial and industrial properties. To find out more about our asbestos services, please give us a call on 01484 400558 or get in touch via the website.


Published: 1st May 2018
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