• Robert Spicer

Asbestos disturbance: two companies fined: when will they ever learn?

Asbestos disturbance: £10,000 fine

Health and Safety Executive v 24-Hour Maintenance Services Ltd and Firestone Estates Ltd (2016) Westminster magistrates’ court, April 13.

Two companies have been fined following the disturbance of asbestos.

Significant points of the case

  • Between July 2014 and August 2014 two employees of 24-Hour Maintenance disturbed asbestos insulating board (AIB) during refurbishment work at commercial premises being converted into flats.

  • Firestone Estates, the client for the project, had not passed on the details of the asbestos to the contractor, despite prior knowledge.

  • No refurbishment and demolition survey had been carried out to determine the presence of asbestos on the site. The two employees stripped out the AIB without any precautions and therefore were subjected to significant exposure to asbestos fibres.

24-Hour Maintenance Services was fined £5000 plus £970 for a breach of section 2, HSW Act, for failing to ensure the health and safety of employees.

Firestone was fined £10,000 plus £1000 costs under regulation 10(b), Construction (Design and Management) Regulations (CDM) 2007.

Regulation 10 of CDM 2007 states, in summary, that every client shall ensure that every person designing the structure; and every contractor who has been or may be appointed by the client, is promptly provided with pre-construction information.

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