What is an asbestos register?
As you discover potential asbestos containing materials (ACMs) in your workplace, your workplace manager must record the ACM’s details into documents that are called asbestos registers. Asbestos registers need to contain an in-depth amount of information on your ACMS, including (but not limited to) the following:
- Date of identification
- Type of ACM
- Whether the asbestos is friable or non friable
- The condition of the ACM
- The specific location
- The location’s accessibility
Why are asbestos registers important?
Asbestos registers are important because they play a large role in the asbestos management of the workplace. In order for all important stakeholders to be aware of ACMs so proper action can be taken, asbestos registers need to be updated frequently.
When it comes to asbestos risk assessment and management, if you are working with asbestos registers that aren’t up to date, then your asbestos management plan is based on inadequate information, and your business is therefore unsafe. Additionally, outdated asbestos registers further increase the risk of inaccurate information when an asbestos survey
is conducted. Not only does that mean a potential exposure risk for your employees, but it also means that your business is not compliant with health and safety regulations.
Am I required by law to have an asbestos register for my building?
It is a legal requirement in Australia to maintain an asbestos register for any building that was constructed before 31 December 2003 must have an asbestos register, per the Work Health and Safety Act
Who is responsible for the creation of asbestos registers?
It is the responsibility of building owners or employers to keep an up-to-date asbestos register, per the Work Health and Safety Act
, including the location and type of asbestos-containing material on their premises. However, an asbestos register can be created by those with the necessary skills, knowledge, and experience to identify ACMs, including:
- Asbestos consultants who are trained and qualified to carry out asbestos surveys and inspections, and to create asbestos registers.
- Licensed asbestos assessors who have been trained and licensed to carry out inspections and assessments of ACMs.
- Health and safety professionals who have expertise in managing workplace health and safety issues, including asbestos management.
- Building surveyors or engineers who may be involved in the design or construction of buildings and may have knowledge of the presence of ACMs.
How often should I review my asbestos register?
, a person with management or control of a workplace where an asbestos register is kept must ensure that the register is reviewed and, as necessary, revised under the following conditions:
- The asbestos management plan is reviewed under clause 430
- Further asbestos or ACM is identified at the workplace
- Asbestos is removed from, or disturbed, sealed or enclosed at, the workplace
In general, it is advisable to conduct an annual review and update of the asbestos register. This practice ensures that any modifications or developments within the building or workplace are accurately documented, thus maintaining the register's currency.
When alterations or renovations occur in the building, such as the introduction of new equipment or the removal of walls, it is crucial to promptly review the asbestos register. This immediate action is necessary to identify and manage any ACMs appropriately.
Furthermore, if the condition of any ACMs deteriorates or if the materials are damaged, it is imperative to immediately review the asbestos register. This review is essential to evaluate potential risks and implement any necessary control measures.
Why do I need an asbestos register?
The consequences of not having an asbestos register can be significant and can include legal, financial, and health risks.
Failure to comply with the Work Health and Safety Act
means employers can be prosecuted and face significant penalties, including fines of up to $126,000 for an individual and $630,000 for a corporation, or imprisonment of up to five years.
Without an asbestos register, there is a risk that workers or occupants of the building may be exposed to asbestos fibres which can cause serious respiratory diseases, including lung cancer, mesothelioma, and asbestosis.
Furthermore, if the condition of any ACMs deteriorates or if the Additionally, failure to have an asbestos register and properly manage ACMs can damage the reputation of a building owner or employer. This can lead to negative publicity and harm the trust and confidence of employees, customers, and the public.are damaged, it is imperative to immediately review the asbestos register. This review is essential to evaluate potential risks and implement any necessary control measures.
Where can I go for more information on asbestos registers?
Can Octfolio help me with the asbestos registers in my business?
Octfolio is a robust software solution that contains many asbestos management features. This includes the ability to log all of your asbestos registers in a safe and secure location that can be accessed whenever necessary.