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Contractor fined for asbestos failings

A Bristol contractor has been fined £2,000 for failing to complete the correct asbestos survey at a domestic construction project.

Salisbury Magistrates’ Court heard that, on 18 October 2017, there was a gas explosion at a flat at Market Place, Chippenham, where construction work had been carried out to develop the property into flats.

Prestige EA had been contracted to advise and manage the development of the property into four flats above a retail unit. The wrong type of asbestos survey was carried out before the work, so the work completed did not comply with the law.

Following the explosion, the HSE investigation found that Prestige EA had failed to plan, manage and monitor construction work to prevent people being exposed to risks associated with asbestos.

The now liquidated Prestige EA, of St James Court, St James Parade, Bristol, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. It was fined £2,000 plus costs of £3,000.

Roderick Standing, who was a senior manager at the now dissolved Longwood Building, was contracted by Prestige EA Ltd to carry out the construction work. Mr Standing was found not guilty of breaching Section 3 of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.

HSE inspector Leo Diez said: “Duty holders must make sure that construction work is properly planned, managed and monitored to ensure asbestos work is carried out in a safe manner to the required standard.

“The dangers associated with asbestos are well known and a wealth of advice and guidance is freely available from HSE and other organisations.”

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