1What is an Asbestos Report?
Our Asbestos Reports include BOTH an Asbestos Register and an Asbestos Management Plan in order for you to be compliant with the Civil Liability Act 2002, the Health (Asbestos) Regulations 1992, Occupational Safety and Health Regulations 1996 and the Occupiers Liability Act 1985. The Asbestos Register is a legislative requirement generally found in Work, Health and Safety legislation, and relates to a work place. An Asbestos Management Plan sets out the control measures and time frames to address any identified Asbestos or Asbestos Containing Material (ACM).
2Do the owners need to get an Asbestos Report?
There are specific exemptions from the Work, Health and Safety legislation for residential strata schemes of having to obtain an Asbestos Register and an Asbestos Management Plan, particularly where the strata scheme does not engage any worker as an employee. However, none of these exemptions protect the owner from legal action from a breach of their Common Law Duty of Care. Asbestos is a known dangerous material and as such, each owner has a Duty of Care to ensure that no harm comes to anyone as a result of the asbestos on that property. A prudent owner should simply obtain an Asbestos Report from Reserve Fund Plans for the small fee that we charge.
3What is the benefit obtaining an Asbestos Report?
The benefit of obtaining an Asbestos Report from Reserve Fund Plans (which includes BOTH an Asbestos Register and an Asbestos Management Plan) is that you would be complying with legislation where required, and from a Common Law Duty of Care point of view you would be discharging one of the key onuses of a responsible property owner, and that is identifying hazards. Asbestos is a known hazardous material which can cause harm to people. Obtaining an Asbestos Report (including BOTH an Asbestos Register and an Asbestos Management Plan) is an inexpensive exercise and of significant benefit to all owner. Without an Asbestos Register a contractor is at risk and so is the instructing property owner or their agent, particularly if an asbestos contamination incident occurs. When contractors are engaged to work on a property, they also have the benefit of knowing what items are asbestos or likely to contain asbestos, and the contractor can then take appropriate measures such as wearing a mask, goggles, protective clothing, and then sealing the area, collecting any dust properly, and correctly disposing of any hazardous material.
4Does an Asbestos Report increase the amount that owners have to pay on an annual basis?
No. If anything, obtaining an Asbestos Report from Reserve Fund Plans (which includes BOTH an Asbestos Register and an Asbestos Management Plan) saves money. Under Work Health and Safety legislation a workplace must have an Asbestos Register and there are significant fines if Asbestos is not identified in a work place. If multiple contractors had to attend a property for work, each would be obligated to obtain an Asbestos Register. It would be more prudent for a property owner to simply obtain one Asbestos Register, rather than pay for multiple Asbestos Registers through each contractor's quote.
5Can Owners vary an Asbestos Report?
Generally an Owner cannot arbitrarily vary an Asbestos Register. If an item was assumed to contain asbestos (which is permitted under Clause 422 of the Model Work Health and Safety Regulation), the Register can be varied if a sample is taken of that item and analysed by a NATA Accredited Lab and found not to contain asbestos. Then the notation on that item in the Register can be varied in accordance with the NATA lab analysis which should then be attached to the register. An Asbestos Management Plan can be varied by an owner provided that appropriate measures are taken. That is, an Asbestos Management Plan deals with the rectification, removal or other works to eliminate, mitigate or minimise harm caused by asbestos on the subject property, and includes who is responsible for that work and when that work must be undertaken by.
6How often should an Asbestos Report be reviewed?
An Asbestos Report should be reviewed regularly to ensure that no damage to an item containing asbestos, or assumed to contain asbestos has occurred.