The Comprehensive Guide to Conducting an Asbestos Survey

Asbestos is a mineral that was widely used for its heat-resistant properties until the 1980s. However, it was discovered that exposure to asbestos fibers could lead to a range of health problems, including lung cancer and mesothelioma. Therefore, it’s important to identify and manage the presence of asbestos in buildings and other structures. This is done through asbestos surveys, which involves a thorough inspection of a building to determine the location and condition of any asbestos-containing materials. In this article, we will look at the procedure and benefits of asbestos survey.

Types of Asbestos Surveys

There are two types of asbestos surveys: management surveys and refurbishment/demolition surveys. A management survey is used to identify the location, type, and condition of asbestos-containing materials that could be disturbed during normal occupancy. Refurbishment/demolition surveys, on the other hand, are more intrusive and are carried out before major refurbishment or demolition work. This survey is designed to identify all asbestos-containing materials so that they can be removed before the work begins.

Procedure of Asbestos Surveys

The procedure of asbestos surveys involves a visual inspection and sampling. During a visual inspection, the surveyor will carefully examine the building and take note of any materials that could potentially contain asbestos. Once a potential asbestos-containing material is identified, a sample will be taken and sent to a laboratory for testing. The results of the laboratory analysis will determine whether or not the material contains asbestos. If the material does contain asbestos, the surveyor will make a note of its location and condition and recommend the necessary action to manage or remove it.

Benefits of Asbestos Surveys

The benefits of asbestos surveys cannot be overstated. First and foremost, asbestos surveys can help protect the health and safety of building occupants and workers. If asbestos is present and left undisturbed, its fibers can become airborne and be inhaled, which can lead to a range of respiratory problems. Secondly, asbestos surveys can help prevent legal liability for the building owner or manager. In many countries, it is against the law to knowingly expose workers or members of the public to asbestos fibers. Therefore, an asbestos survey can help ensure that a building is compliant with legal requirements.

Importance of Hiring a Professional for Asbestos Surveys

Asbestos surveys should only be carried out by professionals with the appropriate qualifications and experience. Asbestos surveyors must have specialist training and qualifications that enable them to carry out the survey safely and effectively. Attempting to carry out asbestos surveys without the necessary equipment, knowledge, and experience can be dangerous and potentially harmful. When looking for a professional asbestos surveyor, it’s important to check their qualifications and ask for testimonials or references from previous clients.


In conclusion, asbestos surveys are an essential tool for managing the presence of asbestos in buildings and other structures. They not only ensure the health and safety of building occupants and workers but also protect building owners and managers from legal liability. It’s important to hire a professional asbestos surveyor to carry out the survey safely and effectively. By understanding the procedure and benefits of asbestos surveys, building owners and managers can take proactive steps towards ensuring the safety and well-being of all those who occupy the building.