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    BUILDER FAILED TO HEED ASBESTOS WARNING

    Firm carried out unlicensed asbestos removal work despite being warned

    Ron Couch Building Contractors Ltd of Griffithstown, Wales has pleaded guilty to two charges under the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2006.

    The company was fined a total of £2,500 and ordered to pay £1,250 costs.

    Caerphilly Magistrate heard that the firm were replacing a central heating boiler when their carpenters removed a cupboard door clad with asbestos insulation board (AIB) in order to take out the boiler.

    A supervisor from a licensed contractor working in a nearby property approached the men when he saw the door outside and warned them of the presence of AIB.

    Company well aware of duties

    HSE Inspector Steve Richardson said:

    “The company was well aware of its legal duties in terms of asbestos work as, prior to this incident, it carried out removal of the asbestos boiler flue in a safe manner using qualified personnel.

    AIB poses less of a risk if not damaged, but this work exposed the edges of the board increasing the risk of releasing asbestos fibres which could be inhaled by the workers and anyone else using the premises.

    This is one of the main reasons why this type of work must be carried out by a licensed contractor, and the work should have stopped as soon as the company was made aware it was AIB.”

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