Houses built or that had work done on them between 1950 and 2000 are quite likely to contain some asbestos. Anyone who plans to undertake work on a property needs to be aware that any works on the fabric of a building may risk disturbing asbestos and releasing tiny asbestos fibres which can cause lung disease and cancer. Asbestos is considered to be a “contaminant”.” The Health and Safety at Work (Asbestos) Regulations 2016 require PCBUs (Persons Conducting Business or an Undertaking) to know the location and condition of asbestos containing materials (ACMs) in their property and to prepare an asbestos management plan for any work involving a risk of exposure to respirable asbestos fibres. (N.B. A homeowner doing minor DIY work around their home is not bound by the regulations in the HSWA but should always be mindful of their own and their family’s health and safety before embarking on any projects).
Residential landlords, property managers, and building contractors are considered to be PCBUs under the Act. As such they have a legal responsibility to ensure the health and safety of everybody involved with or affected by any work undertaken on a property and to support this with the required documentation.
Healthy Homes New Zealand in partnership with Precise Consulting and Laboratory provides professional asbestos analysis, planning and surveying for residential and commercial properties across NZ, to meet the requirements under the HSWA.
The tools that are available through HHNZ
- Sample Analysis: Take your own sample
If you are a homeowner and feel confident to take samples yourself you can find step by step instructions on the HHNZ website.
We are able to analyse and provide results on sample/s collected by you within 48 hours of the sample/s being received at the laboratory.
However, if you are going to embark on a DIY project we do advise that you get a competent person to check what you are doing and if necessary get a sample taken by them before you start work to keep you and your family safe.
- Testing by a competent sampler
We can send a qualified sampler to take your samples; analysis and results are provided within 48 hours.
- Asbestos Management Plan
This spells out where asbestos is located on a property and how risks will be managed. It must be in place before any work is done that might create risks from asbestos.
There are 3 types of surveys. These use sampling methods that are intrusive as asbestos can be hidden in difficult to locate places: steps are taken to mitigate any issues or risks.
- Asbestos Management Survey. Designed to locate asbestos so you know what to do should asbestos materials become damaged or you plan minor works. The report specifies where the asbestos is found, the condition it is in and what to do next.
- Asbestos Refurbishment Survey. Designed to locate asbestos before major work to change or upgrade a property is done.
- Asbestos Demolition Survey. Designed to locate asbestos in a property before it is demolished. It can also be used to give clearance to the area once demolition is complete.
For more information contact Leanne or Claire on 0800 34 34 33.