What responsibilities do building owners have about asbestos?

On Behalf of | Dec 15, 2023 | Asbestos, Mesothelioma |

Building owners bear significant responsibilities when it comes to warning occupants about asbestos. Asbestos was widely used in construction for its fire-resistant and insulating properties before its detrimental health effects were fully understood.

Given the prevalence of asbestos in older buildings, owners must take proactive measures to ensure the safety of those within their premises.

Check for asbestos

First, building owners must find out if there is asbestos in their buildings. This involves thorough inspections by professionals to see if there are materials containing asbestos. This is especially important in older buildings where asbestos might be more common due to construction methods in the past. If inspectors find asbestos, building owners must keep good records of where it is and what condition it’s in.

Manage and remove asbestos

If asbestos is present, building owners need a plan to manage it or, if necessary, remove it. This plan outlines how the material will be safely handled and watched over. If the asbestos needs removing, only licensed asbestos removal professionals can do the job. They follow strict safety rules that reduce the risk of asbestos exposure. Safe removal of asbestos is crucial given that the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization estimates that nearly 40,000 people die every year due to asbestos exposure.

Communicate clearly

Building owners need to be transparent about asbestos. Everyone in the building, including tenants, employees and visitors, should know if there is asbestos and what is being done about it. This information should be easy to understand and shared through signs, written notices and training programs. Clear communication helps people trust that the right steps are being taken to keep them safe.

Building owners are responsible for staying updated on the rules and regulations about asbestos because they can change over time.