A building contractor from Suffolk has been fined for exposing workers and homeowners to potentially fatal asbestos material.
Columbus Building Contractors Ltd admitted breaching safety regulations following work on a garage extension and a kitchen conversion at a home in Ipswich between 8 May and 2 August 2012.
Ipswich Magistrates’ Court was told the garage had an asbestos insulating board ceiling that formed a fire break between it and the rest of the house.
The boards were removed, broken up and left on the front lawn of the property during the conversion work. The debris was then placed into open bags before one of the homeowners transported it to the local tip in his car where the possibility of asbestos was first identified and brought to the attention of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
A licensed contractor was later called in to undertake waste removal of the remaining asbestos material and conduct an environmental clean under fully-controlled conditions.
Claiming compensation for asbestos exposure
The dangers of exposure are well-known in the construction industry.
A number of long-term health risks are associated with inhalation of asbestos fibres, including lung cancer and mesothelioma, so employers must follow safety procedures to the letter in order to protect workers.
In cases where employers fail in their duty care, such as this one, people may be able to claim compensation for asbestos exposure.
Accident Advice Helpline is here to offer guidance and assistance during the claims process.
Columbus Building Contractors Ltd, of Crofton Road, Ipswich, Suffolk, pleaded guilty to breaching regulations 8(1) and 11(1)(a) of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012. It was fined a total of £10,000 and ordered to pay £6,000 in costs.
HSE Inspector Adam Hills said it is absolutely essential that assumptions are not made when dealing with suspected asbestos materials.
Source: Ipswich Star
Date Published: May 22, 2014
Author: David Brown