What is in an asbestos report?

15th March 2017

Asbestos signageIf you suspect there are asbestos containing materials (ACMs) in a commercial building you are responsible for maintaining, you need to put together an asbestos risk register. However, you cannot do this without first having an asbestos survey conducted, as the report following this will provide you with all the information you’ll need to create a register.

An asbestos report details three main aspects:

  1. The location of ACMs
  2. The type of asbestos the ACMs contain
  3. The condition of the ACMs

Let’s take a closer look at what an asbestos report contains, so you have a better idea of what to expect from an asbestos management survey.

A detailed site description

Both the internal and external areas of the building will be looked at during an asbestos survey and samples taken of suspected ACMs. The samples, and their results, are revealed in this section of the report and brief details as to the location, sample size and type of fibres found are specified.

Further details are usually provided much later in the report.

A summary of asbestos incidence

For your convenience, the ACMs found will be put into categories, according to what type of material/product they are, such as ‘insulation’, ‘bonded asbestos products (bitumen, vinyl floor tiles, etc.)’ and ‘insulating board’.

Any materials suspected to contain asbestos, but could not be sampled for whatever reason, will also be listed here.


This is the part of the report where you’ll be given much more detail about each sample taken during the survey. Each ACM will be given a risk score (usually out of ten) based upon the condition of the material and you’ll also be provided with specific recommendations.

There are three types of recommendations usually made regarding ACMS:

  • Management – This typically means there is a low risk the ACM will release any asbestos fibres, but management is still required. This involves labelling the surface of the material to warn others of the hazard, registering the ACM and ensuring it is inspected regularly (to check its condition isn’t deteriorating).
  • Encapsulation/enclosure – If the material is in a poor condition or is likely to be damaged, encapsulation or enclosure is usually recommended. Encapsulation involves painting a special coating over the surface of the ACM to create a seal and stop any fibres escaping. Enclosure is when a physical barrier is provided to protect the ACM from potential damage.
  • Removal – If removal is necessary (whether now or in the future), this must be performed by a licensed asbestos contractor.

Rooms where no samples were taken will also be detailed within this section of the report, so you are aware of the locations the surveyor checked.

As we’ve already explained, following the asbestos report you’ll need to create an asbestos risk register. For more details on how to put one together, click here. If you have any more questions about asbestos reports or want to arrange a survey, please contact ASI today.