Asbestos has hit the headlines again after the discovery of the fibrous carcinogen during the demolition work at Ara Institute of Canterbury’s Christchurch campus. The discovery is expected to add $560,000 more than budgeted to the demolition costs.
WorkSafe has launched a new tool on its website to help businesses develop their asbestos management plans.
Businesses have a duty to manage risks associated with asbestos exposure, including completing an asbestos management plan if required.
The plan must be kept at the workplace and be available to workers and other businesses operating there.
“WorkSafe responded to feedback and worked with businesses to develop an easy-to-use template that guides them through the process of providing the required information,” WorkSafe Head of Health and Technical Services Catherine Epps says.
An asbestos management plan sets out where any identified asbestos or asbestos-containing material (ACM) is present, its condition and how it will be managed.
These plans are required by the Health and Safety at Work (Asbestos) Regulations 2016 for workplaces where asbestos or ACM has been identified, or is likely to be present.
“We have a goal of reducing asbestos-related disease by 50 percent by the year 2040,” Catherine says.
“Our asbestos licensing regime is designed to protect the health of workers and others.
“The hazardous product is still found in many buildings and structures, but with good information businesses can make robust decisions to protect workers and others who might be at risk.”
WorkSafe has comprehensive information on its website, including what businesses are required to do about managing asbestos exposure risks.