Asbestos was widely used in construction during the 20th century due to its durability and heat resistance. However, it is now widely known that exposure to asbestos can lead to serious health problems, including lung cancer and mesothelioma. To ensure the safety of workers residents, asbestos surveys in London are conducted to identify the presence and condition of asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) in buildings. In this blog, we will discuss the different types of asbestos surveys and their purposes.
1. Management survey
A management survey is the most common type of asbestos survey, and it is used to locate and assess the condition of ACMs that could be disturbed or damaged during normal occupancy or maintenance activities. The survey involves a visual inspection of accessible areas and materials likely to contain asbestos, such as floor tiles, pipe insulation, and textured coatings. Samples may be taken and analysed to confirm the presence of asbestos. The survey report should include a management plan, which outlines the location, condition, and risk of identified ACMs, as well as recommendations for their management.
2. Refurbishment & demolition survey
A refurbishment/demolition survey is required when a building is to be renovated or demolished. This type of survey is more extensive than a management survey and involves a thorough inspection of all areas of the building, including those that may be difficult to access, such as roof voids and service ducts. The survey aims to identify all ACMs that could be disturbed during the planned works and assess their condition. Samples are taken from suspected ACMs and analysed in a laboratory to confirm their presence and type. The survey report should include a detailed plan for the safe removal of identified ACMs before the works commence.
3. Reinspection survey
A reinspection survey is a follow-up survey to a management survey, and it is carried out periodically to monitor the condition of identified ACMs and ensure that the management plan is effective. The survey involves a visual inspection of the identified ACMs, and samples may be taken if necessary. The survey report should include an updated management plan and any recommendations for the management or removal of ACMs that have deteriorated or become damaged.
4. Pre-acquisition survey
A pre-acquisition survey is conducted before the purchase or lease of a property to identify the presence of ACMs and assess their condition. The survey involves (quite like the reinspection survey) a visual inspection of the accessible areas and materials that have been suspected of containing asbestos. These samples are then taken and analysed to confirm whether asbestos is present or not. The survey report should include a summary of the findings and any recommendations for the management or removal of identified ACMs.
5. Limited access survey
A limited access survey is conducted when the inspector cannot access all areas of the building, such as behind walls or ceilings. The survey is carried out using a visual inspection combined with previous knowledge of the building and any available records, such as building plans and maintenance records. The survey report should include a list of areas that could not be accessed and any identified ACMs that require further investigation.
In conclusion, there are five different types of asbestos surveys, each with a specific purpose and scope. It is important to choose the right type of survey for your needs and ensure that the surveyor is qualified and competent to complete the service you are inquiring after.