Asbestos Awareness Training

iata300From £375

Face-Fit Testing

Fit2Fit Tests

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Non Licenced Removal Training

iata300From £575+vat

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Call 0845 259 1149


You are mostly at risk when:

  • You are working on an unfamiliar site
  • The building you are working on was built before the year 2000
  • Asbestos-containing materials were not identified before the job was started
  • Asbestos-containing materials were identified but this information was not passed on by the people in charge to the people doing the work
  • You don’t know how to recognise and work safely with asbestos
  • You know how to work safely with asbestos but you choose to put yourself at risk by not following proper precautions, perhaps to save time or because no one else is following proper procedures

Remember, as long as the asbestos is not damaged or located somewhere where it can be easily damaged it won’t be a risk to you.

  • You can’t see or smell asbestos fibres in the air.
  • The effects of asbestos take many years to show up - avoid breathing it in now.
  • Smoking increases the risk many times.
  • Asbestos is only a danger when fibres are made airborne

It is widely accepted that tobacco smoke interacts with asbestos in the causation of lung cancer. This means that the risk of lung cancer for a smoker exposed to asbestos is greater than the sum of the individual effects due to smoking and due to asbestos


There is a lack of scientific consensus as to whether there exists a threshold of exposure to asbestos below which a person is at zero risk of developing mesothelioma. However, there is evidence from epidemiological studies of asbestos exposed groups that any threshold for mesothelioma must be at a very low level - and it is fairly widely agreed that if a threshold does exists then it cannot currently be quantified. For practical purposes HSE does not assume that such a threshold exists.

Asbestosis and lung cancer

The situation for lung cancer and asbestosis is uncertain. Arguments for a threshold for lung cancer are based on the notion of the carcinogenic process being an extension of the chronic inflammatory processes producing fibrosis. It is generally recognised that heavy doses of white asbestos are required to produce clinically significant lung fibrosis. However, the situation for blue and brown asbestos is more uncertain and fibrosis has been observed at much lower exposures. This also suggests that if a threshold for lung cancer does exist for blue and brown asbestos it must be at a very low level indeed.

Though chrysotile (white asbestos) has been used most widely, the greater potency of amphibole (blue and brown) asbestos to cause illness is generally recognised. Hodgson and Darnton in their scientific paper (2000) estimated the risk of mesothelioma and lung cancer by asbestos fibre type for a range of different exposure scenarios. This analysis suggests that on average blue asbestos has a risk about 500 times that of white asbestos for mesothelioma and 10-50 times as high for lung cancer. The equivalent risk ratio for brown asbestos is 100 for mesothelioma and the same as blue (10-50) for lung cancer.

This doesn’t necessarily mean all workers in the occupation have a high risk. What the analysis of occupational groups demonstrates is which occupations on average have a higher risk associated with working in them. The true nature of any risk will crucially depend on the timing and amount of asbestos inhaled. In any case, since mesothelioma has a long latency and because death certificates (upon which statistics are based) only record the last occupation of the deceased, the occupation recorded may not be the one that resulted in the asbestos exposure. Consequently, part of the risk for a given occupation may be because workers exposed in other jobs have moved into this line of work towards the end of their careers.

We are able to deliver on-site training courses in all these regions:

Avon, Bedfordshire, Berkshire, Borders, Buckinghamshire, Cambridgeshire, Central Scotland, Cheshire,  Cleveland, Clwyd, Cornwall, Cumbria, Derbyshire, Devon, Dorset, Dumfries/Galloway, Dyfed, East Sussex, Essex, Fife, Gloucestershire, Grampian, Greater Manchester, Gwent, Gwynedd County, Hampshire, Herefordshire, Hertfordshire, Highlands, Kent, Lancashire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, London, Lothian, Merseyside, Mid Glamorgan, Norfolk, Northamptonshire, Northumberland, Nottinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Powys, Shropshire, Somerset, South Glamorgan, Staffordshire, Strathclyde, Suffolk, Surrey, Tayside, Tyne and Wear, Warwickshire, West Glamorgan, West Midlands, West Sussex, Wiltshire, Worcestershire & Yorkshire

Bangor, Bath, Birmingham, Bradford, Brighton and Hove, Bristol, Cambridge, Canterbury, Cardiff, Carlisle, Chester, Chichester, Coventry, Derby, Durham, Edinburgh, Ely, Exeter, Gloucester, Hereford, Kingston upon Hull, Lancaster, Leeds, Leicester, Lichfield, Lincoln, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle upon Tyne, Newport, Norwich, Nottingham, Oxford, Peterborough, Plymouth, Portsmouth, Preston, Salford, Salisbury, Sheffield, Southampton, St Albans, Stoke-on-Trent, Sunderland, Swansea, Truro, Wakefield, Wells, Winchester, Wolverhampton, Worcester, York