Asbestos removal in council homes
Asbestos is the name given to a group of naturally occurring fibrous materials. Asbestos is very strong, flexible and stable; this led to it being used in a wide range of building materials and products between the 1930s and mid 1980s – it was most extensively used in the 1960s and 1970s. If your home was built or refurbished during this period, it may contain some asbestos material.
Is there a health risk?
Asbestos containing materials are not a risk if they are in a good condition and are not disturbed. When asbestos materials age or become damaged, e.g. when they’re drilled, sawn, scrubbed or sanded, they can release fibres into the air.
Where is asbestos likely to be found?
Asbestos could be found in places such as bath panels, wall panels, lining beneath stairs, corrugated cement sheeting often used on sheds and garages, soffits, soil pipes and textured decorative coatings such as artex.
What are we doing about asbestos in council homes?
We have a Domestic Asbestos Management Plan which sets out how we will identify and manage asbestos in our properties. We have undertaken asbestos surveys to some of our houses and flats; these surveys include all shared entrances and corridors.
We also carry out surveys to all properties before any refurbishment works take place; this could be when a property is empty or before works are carried out as part of our Welsh Housing Quality Standard (WHQS) improvement programme.
All asbestos containing material in good condition will remain in place. If the material is damaged or is a high risk due to its location, we will take appropriate action to have it removed.
Your responsibilities as a council tenant
You must ask our permission before you carry out any work in your home – including decorating if artex is involved. Remember, alterations are not permitted under your tenancy agreement without prior approval from us. This will give us the opportunity to ensure that any asbestos containing materials are identified at an early stage. Qualified staff will consider your request and ensure proper controls are put in place to prevent exposure to you, your family and the person carrying out the work (if not yourself). If you carry out any work or permit others to carry out work without written approval you will be liable for all associated costs.
What to do if you think there’s asbestos in your home
If you’re in doubt as to whether any material contains asbestos, or if you think your home contains damaged asbestos material please contact your local housing office. Please don’t try to deal with it yourself.