When it comes to removing materials containing asbestos (ACMs), it’s always a good idea to put your health first and call in the experts, and probably a legal requirement However, it can be expensive, so some people choose to do the job on their own. While we’d always suggest getting professional help, for those people that take the high risk decision, it’s important that you know you can’t just dispose of asbestos in the same way as other household waste.
Regardless of who carries out removal work, the regulations surrounding disposal are strict and clear. You’ll only need to know about them if you are disposing of them yourself, rather than the more common scenario of a company with asbestos awareness training doing it for you. A good place to start is Liverpool Council’s website section on asbestos, and the Merseyside Waste Disposal authority guidance. You’ll note from both of these pages that you’re highly advised not to attempt removal yourself, so by now you hopefully know you don’t just need to take our work for it!
The Guardian ran an article in 2011 claiming that half of all UK homes contain asbestos. While they point to the fact that this isn’t necessarily a problem if the asbestos is contained within other materials, the majority of the article focused on the story of a Kent household that suffered a leak which brought down an artexed ceiling which contained asbestos.
Of course, this is exactly the type of scenario which can release harmful fibres into the air, but as with most things in life it’s got to be balanced in context. While accidents do happen, there’s also a risk when removing asbestos, no matter how safely it’s carried out. Naturally, the risk to contractors must be low as they complete domestic asbestos removal work around Liverpool, otherwise no sane person would ever get into the trade.
Having said that, how often do you come home to water pouring through the ceiling? You could quite easily make the counter argument that insurance companies would not cover these risks if they were common. The most common middle ground for most people is that if the asbestos containing materials remain in good condition and undamaged, they’re better left alone, unless there’s good reason to decide otherwise, such as work in the area which could dislodge them and cause a danger.
Residential properties can usually be dealt with relatively quickly by professional companies, so you can find out how much it will cost for your domestic asbestos removal job here.