The Health and Safety at Work (Asbestos) Regulations 2016 place a duty on businesses to have asbestos management plans in place for workplaces where asbestos is likely to be found.
An asbestos management plan sets out where any identified asbestos or asbestos-containing material is present, and how it will be managed.The workplace PCBU must make sure a copy of the asbestos management plan is readily accessible to workers and their representatives, as well as to other PCBUs. A copy of the plan should be kept at the workplace.
The workplace PCBU must review and (if necessary) revise the asbestos management plan every five years, or when:
- asbestos controls are reviewed
- asbestos is removed, disturbed, sealed or enclosed
- the plan is no longer adequate for managing the asbestos risks. For example, if new asbestos is identified, or if a previously inaccessible area is now accessible.
As well, a representative for workers at a workplace may request a review of an asbestos management plan if the representative reasonably believes that:
- any of the situations noted above affects, or may affect, the health and safety of a member of the work group being represented, and
- the workplace PCBU has not adequately reviewed the asbestos management plan in relation to the situation.
When is an asbestos management plan needed?
A PCBU must have an asbestos management plan in place for a structure where asbestos is found or is likely to be present at a workplace from time to time.
Having an asbestos management plan will ensure that a PCBU can manage risks in situations where people at the property – such as workers, tenants, clients or other visitors – could be exposed to respirable asbestos fibres (fibres able to be breathed in).
Is a surveyor needed to create an asbestos management plan?
Not necessarily. A PCBU can create its own asbestos management plan by following the process outlined in Section 9 of our approved code of practice: Management and removal of asbestos
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