Protect your business from asbestos in fires

As a business or organisation, fire safety should be a top priority. However, it’s not just flames that pose a threat to your employees and property. Another hidden danger that often goes overlooked is asbestos, a toxic substance that was widely used in building materials until its total ban in 1999. If your building was constructed before this time, it’s important to be aware of the potential risks and take appropriate measures to protect your staff and visitors.

The person in charge of fire safety within a business or organisation plays a crucial role in ensuring the safety of everyone in the building. This individual should have a thorough understanding of fire safety protocols, including identifying potential fire hazards, implementing fire prevention measures, and developing emergency evacuation plans. Additionally, they should also have knowledge of asbestos-containing materials and their potential risks, including the health hazards associated with asbestos exposure.

Regular inspections of the premises by the person in charge of fire safety are essential to identify and address any potential fire hazards or asbestos-containing materials. This may include checking for proper storage of flammable materials, ensuring that fire exits are clear and accessible, and identifying any areas that may have asbestos-containing materials, such as insulation, flooring, or ceiling tiles.

Staying updated on relevant fire safety regulations, codes, and best practices, as well as the risks and regulations related to asbestos, is critical for the person in charge of fire safety. This may involve attending training programs, staying informed about changes in local regulations, and consulting with experts or professionals, such as asbestos abatement specialists.

In the unfortunate event of a fire, it’s crucial for people to avoid the area containing asbestos when evacuating the building, if possible. When asbestos-containing materials are exposed to fire, they can release toxic fibres into the air, posing serious health risks to anyone exposed. In particular, mesothelioma, a rare and aggressive cancer linked to asbestos exposure, has a high mortality rate. It’s a devastating disease that can affect not only employees but also their families.

The resulting effect to asbestos exposure is called mesothelioma, a type of cancer that affects the lining of the lungs, abdomen, or heart, and is caused by inhaling or ingesting asbestos fibres. Unfortunately, mesothelioma has a long latency period, with symptoms often not appearing until decades after the initial exposure to asbestos leading to poor  life expectancies. This makes early detection and prevention critical in reducing the risks of mesothelioma.

If your building was constructed before the ban on asbestos, it’s important to have a comprehensive asbestos management plan in place. This may involve conducting asbestos surveys, implementing proper asbestos removal and abatement procedures, and providing regular training and education to employees about asbestos awareness and safety measures.

In cases where employees or individuals have been exposed to asbestos and have developed mesothelioma or other asbestos-related illnesses, seeking legal assistance may be necessary. It can provide legal guidance and representation to individuals and families affected by mesothelioma, helping them seek compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages.

In conclusion, fire safety should not be limited to flames alone, but should also encompass awareness and management of asbestos-containing materials. The person in charge of fire safety within a business or organisation plays a crucial role in ensuring the safety of everyone in the building by identifying potential fire hazards and addressing the risks associated with asbestos-containing materials. Staying updated on regulations, codes, and best practices, and seeking legal assistance when needed, can help protect employees and visitors from the serious health risks associated with asbestos exposure and mesothelioma. It’s essential to prioritise fire safety and asbestos awareness to create a safe environment for all.

The Mesothelioma Center at has been helping connect people impacted by mesothelioma and asbestos exposure with reliable information, world-class treatment, legal services, and so much more.


Tags: , , , ,