- Are they licensed? Ask for a copy of their licence that will verify their legal entitlement to do the task you require. Whether it be to:
- Assess a building or property for asbestos;
- Issue asbestos clearance certificates;
- Remove asbestos;
- Transport asbestos; or
- Demolish buildings with asbestos.
- Do they have public liability and/or professional indemnity insurance to the value of at least $20,000,000 that specifically covers asbestos handling and removal – and just as importantly, is it valid for the period your project will be conducted over?
- Ask for references – once obtained:
- Talk to the people they have put on the list – do they seem genuine, and talk highly of the person or company you are enquiring about?
- Ring your local council and your local SafeWork/WorkSafe office to verify credentials, or go online. See the information page:
If you are removing asbestos containing materials first acquaint yourself with some of the basics you should expect from a licensed asbestos removalist by reading the Bernie Banton Foundation’s information page: Removing Asbestos Material Then ask the licensed removalist the above questions and also the questions below:
- Will they be arranging for any necessary permits to enable the work to be carried out legally, and will they be arranging for the legal disposal of the removed material?
- How will the job be done?
- When and how will neighbours, and any people who are likely to be affected, be notified?
- If the removal is to take place in an enclosed area, will they be vacuuming the immediate and surrounding areas where the asbestos material was removed from, using asbestos approved HEPA vacuum cleaners? If a re-roofing job, will they be vacuuming the roof/ceiling cavities?
- Will they then spray the area with a PVC solution to encapsulate and arrest any asbestos fibres/dust that may remain?
- Will monitors be deployed to measure the air quality during, and after the job is finished?
- Will a legal asbestos clearance certificate be issued by an independent licensed asbestos assessor with appropriate qualifications, on completion of the job?
- If you are removing asbestos cement corrugated roof sheeting (ACCRS), also ask:
- How will the roof sheets hold down fixings be removed?
- Will the roof sheets be lifted off, and not dragged?
- How will the ACCRS be lowered to the ground?
- Will they be removing the ceiling insulation material from the roof/ceiling cavity?
It is important whomever you engage to work on your asbestos project, takes total responsibility for the project, and absolves you of any legal responsibility regarding asbestos contamination or handling.
If you experience ‘smart’ or ‘negative’ answers to these very basic and legitimate questions, you will know you are dealing with an asbestos cowboy – run a country mile! It is important for the safety of yourself and others, to use legitimate operators!