Council faces criminal charges over asbestos removal

13th August 2014

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is considering taking legal action against Mid Devon District Council (MDDC) after it failed to follow regulations when removing asbestos.

It’s possible that residents living in Brays Close were exposed to brown asbestos during the removal of soffits last month. New information indicates that the council’s contractors, Phil Squires, did not follow guidelines when removing the material. Phil Squires was aware of the contamination too, as in 2012 the contractor reported there was asbestolux in the soffits, reports middevongazette.co.uk.

Brays Close resident, Peter Bearder, who complained back in January that his flat was full of asbestos, said the council didn’t tell local residents that the removal work was taking place. He told a number of asbestos managers about the way the material was removed and they all said that it had not been done properly, reports bbc.co.uk.

Head of the council, Nick Sanderson, stated that the incident is being taken seriously.

“We have notified the HSE that the removal of the soffits may not have complied fully with regulations in force at the time,” he commented. “We have also instructed a specialist asbestos contractor to carry out a thorough survey of the area to determine if there are still any asbestos containing materials on site.”