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From September 2022, HSE will be carrying out inspections to both primary and secondary schools in England, Scotland, and Wales.
Under the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 (CAR), anyone with responsibility for the maintenance of work premises has a duty to manage the risk from asbestos. With this in mind, the inspections will be assessing how the risk from asbestos is managed within the school’s premises.
There are a number of things schools may wish to do in advance of being inspected, to ensure they’re meeting the responsibilities required under CAR.
Under CAR, schools need to be able to show they’ve taken reasonable steps to find out if there is asbestos or if there are asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) within the school buildings and grounds. If any is found, they also need to know where it is and what condition it’s in – it’s also important to keep this information in an up-to-date record of this information.
Taking it a step further, the risk needs to be assessed of anyone being exposed from the material identified, and a detailed asbestos management plan (AMP) to set out how the risks will be managed. The AMP on its own isn’t enough though, schools need to show that they’re taking the necessary steps to put it into action. The plan should be kept up-to-date based on regular reviews, which also inform any changes needed in the action plan.
For more information on managing asbestos in schools, visit the HSE website.