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RR783 - Evaluation of the duty to manage asbestos

The UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) are responsible for the regulation of a large number of the risks to health and safety arising from work activity in Britain. Their mission is to ensure that risks to people’s health and safety from work activities are properly controlled. To achieve their objectives, they develop and apply science and technology to provide a sound, independent knowledge base to evaluate the risks to people’s health and safety from work activities and the means to assess and control these risks.

Asbestos exposure is a major cause of occupational disease. The groups now most at risk of exposure are individuals working to maintain buildings that still contain asbestos. The HSE has therefore taken a number of steps to control the exposure of maintenance workers to asbestos, including the introduction of an explicit duty to manage asbestos in non-domestic premises. The duty was included in the Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations 2002; however, it did not come into force until 21 May 2004. It is now Regulation 4 of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2006.

This report presents the findings of a research project aimed at evaluating the duty to manage asbestos. This project is one of a series of research activities looking at the impact of the duty and informing any modifications that may be required.

This report and the work it describes were funded by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Its contents, including any opinions and/or conclusions expressed, are those of the authors alone and do not necessarily reflect HSE policy.

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Updated 2011-08-03