Asbestos is typically considered ‘Hazardous Waste,’ hence there are legal ramifications in addition to concerns for the safety of workers for the treatment of asbestos. Commercial property owners and managers have difficulties with commercial asbestos removal in Sydney.
The Australian government considers asbestos-containing garbage dangerous if it contains more than 0.1% of the substance. It’s important to emphasise that asbestos trash can never be diluted with other trash to the point where its asbestos content drops below 1%.
It’s essential for those unfamiliar with the content to understand why it’s dangerous. Asbestos has existed for at least 4,500 years in Sydney, but it wasn’t used until the late 1950s. The material was widely used in building for decades due to its durability and resistance to heat and fire but was eventually banned in 1999.
Asbestos was outlawed because its usage emits harmful fibres that can cause illnesses like asbestosis and mesothelioma. These can be deadly if not treated.
Asbestos workers were vulnerable to inhaling the fibres during their job, and the fibres can be discharged into the air if the material is broken or otherwise disturbed.
It is crucial to follow the proper protocols while dealing with asbestos. Organisations in Sydney face heavy fines for failing to comply with the rules designed to protect the safety of their employees and the public. In 2019, one construction firm in Sydney was fined more than £170,000 for not ensuring lawful and safe disposal.
Containing and Eliminating Asbestos
A thorough risk management assessment and a site survey must first be conducted. This way, a qualified contractor can prepare for the safe removal of asbestos and other items that require special handling.
The first consideration is that a licensed contractor must perform most commercial asbestos removal in Sydney. Infrequent or low-intensity asbestos cleaned up without surpassing the regulatory control limit of 0.1 asbestos fibres per cubic centimetre of air is an example of the kind of asbestos removed without a licence.
Different types of asbestos require different removal methods; therefore, the procedures, techniques, and tools that are considered safe vary. Strict air quality monitoring must be carried out upon removal to ensure the safety of the surrounding area.
Asbestos must be disposed of properly after being removed in Sydney. Following the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012, the Health and Safety Executive has established clear standards for the disposal of asbestos.
As a first step, you should always use two packaging layers and identify anything with more than 0.1% asbestos. Asbestos code and CDG danger labels are to be displayed, and the package should be UN-approved. The easiest way to accomplish this is with a transparent outer bag marked with the CDG danger label and a red inside bag containing asbestos warnings.
Asbestos fibres are released when the material is broken up; thus, leaving it in large pieces is preferable. They should be double-wrapped in 1000 gauge polythene sheets and well labelled instead.
Asbestos trash hauling
Only licensed trash carriers should transport the waste to dispose of asbestos properly. A wholly sealed skip is required for its transportation. The alternative is to employ a vehicle that satisfies the following conditions:
- Asbestos materials should be kept in a separate area.
- It should be locked and secured by throwing a sheet over it.
In the end, the asbestos is sent to a certified landfill for safe disposal. An official Waste Consignment Note must be filled out and stored for at least three years.