If you have recently found out that your office building contains asbestos, then you might be panicking a little bit. If you don’t know much about asbestos, apart from the fact that it can cause cancer, you are probably feeling a little concerned.
Take some deep breaths. It might be a shock finding out that your office contains asbestos, but there is no need to panic. As long as the asbestos is confined to the walls or roof, then you and your employees should be just fine.
The problems come when the asbestos is disturbed. So for instance, if your asbestos ceiling were broken, then this could be dangerous. The danger of asbestos comes from the fibers; so as long as the asbestos is not exposed, the risk is low.
To help you take the next steps to deal with the fact there is asbestos in your building, we have put together some useful tips, below:
Call a contractor
The first thing you must do once finding out there is asbestos in your office building is call a contractor. It might be a cost you weren’t expecting, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. Asbestos is a band material, so it’s important that you have it removed as soon as possible.
Make sure that when you call the contractor, that you explain the situation to him. Some contractors refuse to deal with asbestos, but there are many firms that will. Depending on the amount of asbestos in the building, it might be better to call an asbestos removal company.
Shut up shop
While the work is being done on your building, it’s an absolute must that you send all employees home. You might lose a few days of work, but it’s far better than the alternative of being sued for millions due to asbestos exposure.
Before allowing your employees to return to work, it’s a good idea to have the building checked by a health and safety expert. Ask them to check whether all the asbestos has been removed, and when it would be safe to re-enter the building.
Consult a lawyer
If you think that employees have been exposed to the asbestos, consult a specialist asbestos law firm, like Shrader & Associates. While it is you who could potentially be at fault, it’s a good idea to consult them to find out more about where you stand, in terms of the law.
If you didn’t know anything about the asbestos being there, are you at fault? If asbestos was not mentioned anywhere on the deeds when you bought the property, are you at fault? Consulting a lawyer will allow you to ask all the questions you need to ask and understand where you stand.
Finding out that your office has asbestos in it can be scary, especially if the asbestos is exposed. But it’s important to stay calm and always put the safety of your employees first.