Asbestos: Why risk it?
Asbestos exposure remains the number one killer of workers in B.C. Whether you’re an employer, supervisor, prime contractor, or worker, you have a role to play in keeping the workplace safe.
Not dealing with asbestos properly can result in WorkSafeBC stop work orders and/or fines, which will harm your business through lost hours, blown deadlines, and cancelled projects. And if word gets out that you’re a contractor who cuts corners and doesn’t take asbestos seriously, it could harm your professional reputation.
Our prevention officers will be conducting planned inspections of worksites to ensure all jobsites are properly informed and equipped to safely remove asbestos-containing materials and are in compliance with the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation.
Through proper planning, training, and supervision, you can eliminate or reduce the risk of workers’ exposure to asbestos. We have compiled a list of resources to help you understand your role and the ways that you can ensure everyone remains safe from occupational disease on the jobsite.
You can find the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation and Guideline at the links below:
Booklets and safety manuals
- Ten simple steps to complying with asbestos abatement
Before you begin renovations or start demolishing an older home, follow these guidelines to ensure the safe detection and removal of asbestos.
- Safe Work Practices for Handling Asbestos
This booklet describes the safe methods and work procedures for handling and removing all types of asbestos-containing materials.
- Asbestos: Frequently Asked Questions (for homeowners)
- Asbestos - what you need to know (homeowners)
Toolbox meeting guides
Construction toolbox meeting guides provide a simple, clear format for conducting effective toolbox talks. Guides for asbestos include:
Bulletins and alerts
- Renovation and restoration projects: Low bid may not meet environmental or workplace safety requirements
- Asbestos hazards in demolition, renovation, and salvage
Video and multimedia
The following videos can be used as learning tools for management, supervisors, and crew:
- Asbestos (2 min 16 s)
- Asbestos in Construction: Contractors (1 min 01 s)
- Asbestos in Construction: Workers (1 min 20 s)
- Asbestos in Demolition and Renovation (5 min 14 s)
- Asbestos Hazards in Renovations, Restoration, and Demolition (2 min 55 s)
- The History of Asbestos in B.C. (11 min 15 s)
Forms and documents
- Notice of Project for Asbestos Work
The OHSR requires that employers notify WorkSafeBC in writing, through a Notice of Project form, about projects where asbestos may exist.
- Exposure Registry Program Form 41M1
You may be entitled to compensation if you develop an occupational disease due to a hazardous exposure — now or in the future. The information obtained through the registry will be kept as a permanent record of a worker's exposure.