How Modular Buildings Can Solve Asbestos Woes

If you own office buildings that suddenly become unsafe, finding a solution urgently can be pretty hard. That is where a swiftly-established modular office cabin could get you out of a very tricky situation.

A good example of this is if a building is found to contain dangerous levels of airborne asbestos after an inspection, a problem being faced on a large scale by Wirral council on Merseyside.

The Wirral Globe has reported that inspections by the council have shown more than 130 buildings owned by the local authority, including 55 schools, contain dangerous asbestos. The figures were revealed in a freedom of information request.

With the material, originally used as fireproofing but banned in 1999 due to its dangerous effects – not least in causing the usually fatal lung disease mesothelioma – causing such perils now, the council clearly has a big job on its hands.

If asbestos is in a safe position where it is isolated from circulating air and therefore not liable to be breathed in by those on the premises, building regulations state it should not be removed. But if this changes, such as when renovation work takes place, a building will need to be closed for safety reasons while safe removal is carried out by specialists wearing personal protective equipment.

Such a situation might leave Wirral needing some temporary modular offices if it has to close some premises, as well as temporary libraries and school buildings.

The latest guidance on the material is covered by the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012, which made minor changes to previous legislation in order to comply with a 2009 EU directive on the issue. A key point is that those in charge of non-domestic buildings have a ‘duty to manage’ asbestos in them, which may involve removal of it should there be a risk of exposure.

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