A Wigan builder has been fined by Manchester Magistrates Court for exposing a family to asbestos.
Anthony McGrath of Winstanley Construction was employed to do a garage conversion at the property.
As part of the refurb, McGrath carried out asbestos removal work to the ceiling.
The court heard how he was not licensed to carry out the asbestos removal.
Mr McGrath failed to carry out the work in a safe manner.
This resulted in the ground floor of the property becoming contaminated with asbestos.
The HSE carried out their own investigation into the incident.
They discovered that Mr McGrath removed Asbestos Insulating Board ceiling panels from the garage.
He’d proceeded to break the panels up before placing them in the garden, where they remained for several days.
The home owner asked him about the boards and was told it was asbestos, but he indicated that they were safe and he would remove them soon.
As she was concerned, the homeowner decided to ring and seek advice from the local council.
She was advised to contact a licensed asbestos removal contractor, which she subsequently did.
They confirmed that the boards were infact Asbestos Insulating Board and advised that the boards be removed as a matter of urgency by a licensed contractor.
Several areas of the house were found to be contaminated with asbestos.
The family had to move out of the house for more than a week while the decontamination process took place.
This process ended up costing more than £12,000.
Anthony McGrath of Winstanley Road, Billinge, Wigan pleaded guilty to breaching safety regulations – Regulation 10 of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 and Regulation 8 (1) of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012.
He received a fine totaling £475 and was ordered to pay £7,500 in compensation.
David Norton, HSE Inspector, said after the hearing, “This incident could so easily have been avoided by simply carrying out correct control measures and safe working practices. Companies and individuals should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards”.
Duty holders and employers have a legal responsibility to manage asbestos in their building so as not to put employees at risk. Contact our Armco office for asbestos management and refurbishment/ demolition surveys on 0161 763 3727 or by visiting https://www.armco.org.uk/
Alternatively, to book onto one of our asbestos training courses, please call 0161 761 4424 or visit https://www.armcoasbestostraining.co.uk/
Published Aug 22, 2017