Why do I need an asbestos inspection?
It is estimated that 1/3 of all homes built in Australia contain asbestos. It was used in more than 3000 different products including fibro, flue pipes, drains, roofs, gutters, brakes, clutches and gaskets.
Asbestos becomes a health risk when its fibres are released into the air and breathed in. Breathing in asbestos fibres can cause asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma.
According to Safework Australia 701 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma each year.
If you are planning to renovate or do maintenance on your existing home you should make sure there are no asbestos present before you start to avoid serious health risk to yourself and your family.
Maybe you are thinking of buying a new home as your main home or an investment property. You need to know if asbestos is present as the cost to remediate if it is in an unsafe condition could be substantial and you cannot expose your family or tenants to asbestos health risk.
If you own commercial property you should know your responsibilities under the law. The first step is to know if asbestos is present and then by law you are obliged to manage the risk associated with asbestos, which involves:
- identifying asbestos and asbestos containing material at the workplace and recording this in an asbestos register
- assessing the risk of exposure to airborne asbestos
- eliminating or minimising the risks associated with asbestos by implementing control measures
- reviewing control measures to make sure they are effective
- have an asbestos management plan in place
Asbestos is regulated by several agencies, including WorkSafe, Department of Environment Regulation and Department of Health
Penalties apply for not complying with these regulations. As of January 2017, penalties of up to $10,000 (for individuals) can be imposed if a person is convicted of an offence against the regulations.
The Complete Guide to Asbestos Inspections in Perth
Jim’s Building Inspections are well-trained experts in asbestos inspections. We perform over 5,000 inspections a month across Australia, giving buyers our reliable and trustworthy service to help you make better purchasing decisions. Whether you are looking to buy a house, or make an investment, knowing all you can about the property you are interested in gives you buying power.
Our inspections range from Pre-Purchase Inspections, Termite and Pest Inspections, New Construction, and asbestos inspections in Perth and throughout West Australia. We want to empower you with the knowledge that the building you are interested in is up to scratch and safe, with no hidden defects.
One of the most important checks that should be done when you are buying a property – especially an older property – is to check for asbestos.
As a certified asbestos inspector, Jim’s Building Inspections are here to give you all the information to understand why getting an asbestos inspection in Perth and beyond is important when you are considering purchasing a property.
What is Asbestos?
We know that asbestos is bad – but why all the trouble to ensure it isn’t in your property?
Asbestos is a name given to a group of minerals made up of microscopic fibres. It was used to strengthen concrete, to create insulation, and in over 3,000 products used in house building. In 1989, the use of asbestos in building supplies was banned when it was found that the fibres could become airborne and cause health issues.
- Breathing Issues
Pleural thickening and pleural plaques are not only caused by exposure to asbestos, but it is a known cause. Breathing in asbestos can cause thickening of the pleural lining of the lungs. It makes you breathless and can be a precursor to more serious asbestos-related lung issues.
Asbestosis is a long-term rare lung condition. If you breathe in asbestos fibres over a long period of time, scarring can occur, making your lungs harden and shrink. There is currently no cure for asbestosis.
While asbestosis is non-malignant, asbestos exposure can cause cancer. Mesothelioma is a name for cancers that develop in the lining of the lungs – and scarring caused by asbestos fibres is a trigger.
SafeWork Australia states that 701 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma every year.
Asbestos might have been banned in building use from 1989 – but even newer houses could pose an asbestos risk – and with remediating costs in the thousands, an inspection could not only protect your health, but also your pocket.
The Asbestos Inspection Process
When you contact us to perform an asbestos inspection in Perth (or anywhere in Australia), your certified asbestos inspector will make a visual check of all accessible areas, taking pictures and samples. All samples are tested in a NATA certified laboratory.
If you are purchasing a commercial property, you have additional responsibilities under law to identify asbestos and mitigate the risk of exposure to your staff.
Asbestos (and the management of it) is regulated by several agencies, like WorkSafe, the Department of Environmental Regulation and the Department of Health, so ensuring you use a certified asbestos inspector will ensure that you are not risking financial penalties by not complying.
Don’t take a chance on health and protect yourself from financial problems by getting an asbestos inspection from Jim’s Building Inspections. Call us today and find out more.
Do You Need an Asbestos Inspection in Perth?
Around a third of all homes built in Australia contain asbestos. An asbestos inspection in Perth from Jim’s Building Inspections can identify one of 3,000 products containing asbestos that might be present in your property, saving you time, stress and money as well as protecting your health.
Jim’s Building Inspections is part of the largest network of building inspectors in Australia, providing over 5,000 inspections a month. As part of the trusted Jim’s brand, our inspectors offer an efficient, reliable and quality service that can recognise and deal with problems that could be costly and even dangerous – protecting buyers from investing a considerable sum of money in a property that is not up to standard.
We offer a range of inspection services, from pre-purchase inspections to dilapidation reports, from drug use to termite inspections, and industrial, commercial, and asbestos inspections.
What is Asbestos and Why Should it be Avoided?
Asbestos is a mineral substance that was widely used in buildings. Everything from guttering to roofs and drains used it because it has such good insulating properties, is strong, widely available and, most importantly, it’s cheap. A fibrous material that offered so many building applications and had been widely used since the Industrial Revolution, asbestos can be found in fire doors, cladding, electrical boards and even toilet seats. From the 1950s – 70s, Australia had the highest per capita use of asbestos in the world, according to The Mesothelioma Center in America.
Asbestos was widely mined in Australia – perhaps most famously at Wittenoom, where the most toxic blue asbestos (Crocidolite) began to be dug up by the Colonial Sugar Refinery in 1943. The mine shut in 1966, but with three million tonnes of asbestos residue (tailings) left in the gorge, the area is widely regarded as the most contaminated place on the planet. More than 2,000 people have died from asbestos exposure caused by the mining activity in the area, and the township was removed from maps in 2007.
However, it has become known that asbestos is life-threatening. Asbestosis is a serious lung condition, where disturbed asbestos fibres can embed themselves in lung tissue over time. This can then lead to other complications, like mesothelioma and lung cancer. According to Safework Australia, over 700 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma every year.
If there is asbestos present in your property, it is usually safe unless it is disturbed. Any renovations or maintenance in a home that contains asbestos runs the risk of unleashing these fibres and damaging your health, and the health of your family.
How to Identify Asbestos in Your Property
The only way to assess whether there is asbestos in your property is with a certified asbestos inspector. Here at Jim’s Building Inspections Perth we have fully trained, experienced, and certified inspectors available to identify asbestos, whether in a home or in a commercial property.
In an asbestos inspection in Perth from Jim’s, your inspector will identify asbestos and asbestos-containing materials visually, then taking samples to be tested at a NATA-certified laboratory. If asbestos is identified, then our inspector can offer you advice to help you make the property safe.
If you are considering purchasing a property built before the year 1990, a certified asbestos inspector could help ensure that you aren’t at risk from asbestos and the long-term health implications it could bring for you and your family.
Our reports include:
Lab analysis report
Records of location
Records of each area condition
Advice regarding asbestos management
Is your property built before 1990?
If we suspect any asbestos, we will take a sample and send it off to a NATA certified laboratory for confirmation. We won’t take the risk, neither should you.
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