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According to the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), asbestos is responsible for the deaths of six electricians a week in the UK every year*.
This startling statistic has highlighted the need for both time-served and new recruits to the industry to be asbestos-aware.
Every electrician who isn’t asbestos aware is risking their life every time they work on a building constructed pre 2000, says the UK Asbestos Training Association (UKATA).
UKATA is now urging every tradesperson to ensure their asbestos training is both recognised and up-to-date.
Banned in the UK in 1999, the popularity of asbestos as a building material, particularly near fuse boxes, before then means many buildings are now a ticking timebomb. Whilst undisturbed asbestos is virtually harmless, when disturbed asbestos releases fibre dust particulates into the air. It is these particulates, which when inhaled, can lead to debilitating asbestosis disease or fatal lung cancer.
To support wider awareness of asbestos, UKATA-approved training providers offer a number of industry-recognised affordable, short duration courses which are available throughout the UK.
Asbestos awareness courses are designed to give information, instruction and training to workers and supervisors so that they can avoid work that may disturb asbestos during any normal work.
Craig Evans, Chief Operating Officer of UKATA, explained: “Because new people are joining the industry every day, electricians must ensure they understand the dangers of asbestos. Their lives and others literally depend on it.
For details of UKATA-approved training providers, please visit www.ukata.org.ukor call 01246 824 437.