Thanks to the unfortunate history that Australia has had with asbestos, regular audits are a necessity. In accordance with workplace legislation, asbestos audits are needed in commercial properties where asbestos has either been confirmed to be present or is suspected to be. If your property falls under that category, you should seek an audit as soon as possible. Below, discover what you should expect from this process.
First, the auditors will carry out a risk assessment. This process is meant to determine what likelihood there is of there being asbestos in your property. To do this, the auditors will factor in when your property was built, when it was last inspected, what prior reports say, the architecture of the property, among other factors. This assessment will allow them to plan how to carry out the ensuing inspection process.
Next, the auditors will carry out the inspection process itself. This entails going from room to room and looking for any signs of asbestos material or building material that may contain the harmful product. This process will involve looking at prone areas such as roofing and insulation as well as taking samples of suspected materials. And air quality test will also be undertaken to see if there are any asbestos fibres in the air.
Deconstruction, identification and extraction
If asbestos is discovered, the materials that contain it will have to be removed. This may necessitate some level of deconstruction of the walls, roofing and flooring. Any positive material identified will be noted down and photographed for record-keeping. It will then be extracted and packed in air-tight plastic bags for safety reasons. In some areas, some harmful material may be left untouched for future removal if its removal may compromise the building's safety.
All identified asbestos material already packed will be removed from the premises by the auditors. It will then be taken to labs where it will be destroyed or stored in a secure environment where it does not pose a danger to anyone.
Last but not least, the auditors will prepare an asbestos report. This report will contain a final risk assessment, a report of the audit findings complete with photographs and lab tests, a register showing who has come into contact with the material as well as a management plan detailing how the identified asbestos (especially that on the property) will be handled in future.
Once the process is complete, your property may either be certified asbestos-free or you may be left with an asbestos management plan to follow as a future guide.