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Asbestos - Repair, Maintenance and Demolition of Farm Buildings

The 1999 Regulations have implications for the repair, maintenance and demolition of buildings which contain asbestos. Guidelines are given below:

Farmers and farm managers have a duty of care to ensure that they are aware of any asbestos on their farms. Records of the locations should be kept. Assume unidentified material is asbestos until proved otherwise and ensure all risks are managed.

Only employ competent, professional contractors to carry out work on buildings where asbestos is present.

If asbestos materials are sound and undamaged do not disturb them. If they are not sound but repairable, employ contractors to carry out the work including any protection and re-sealing work necessary.

If the materials are beyond repair remove them in accordance with HSE Guidelines (www.hse.gov.uk), Information-line 08701 545500). Always replace as whole panels. Do not generate dust. Protect all workers by carrying out a risk assessment. Replace with non-asbestos materials.

Dispose of waste according to the Special Waste Regulations. Waste must be removed from the site by licensed contractors to land fill sites licensed to take asbestos. If the waste is generated on farm it can be disposed of on farm by burial. However, this should be avoided at all costs as it could reduce the value of the land. The land could also be classified as contaminated and by subject to a clean-up order which could be expensive.

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