Construction workers oblivious of asbestos danger despite wide exposure
A recent survey by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) has revealed worrying levels of ignorance about the dangers of asbestos, despite one in four respondents believing they may have been exposed to the deadly material.
Two Thirds of London workers unaware asbestos can cause cancer
The survey revealed further surprising and concerning statistics. One third of respondents did not know that asbestos can cause the cancer known as mesothelioma. London workers were especially of concern as only 37% understood the risk.
No idea of procedures when asbestos discovered
Nearly one in five respondents said they would be uncertain or would not know what to do if they discovered asbestos on a job and one third did not check asbestos registers for a site. 15 per cent were unaware registers, which must be accessed prior to any work undertaken, even existed.
15% of workers never informed about dangers
Whilst 59% were trained regularly about the dangers of asbestos, 15% said they had never been informed. One in five had no idea what they would do if they came across the substance.
Work-related cancer claims 742,000 lives a year worldwide
The Institution issued the statistics at the launch of the fourth phase of the No Time To Lose campaign, which raises awareness of the 742000 work-related deaths globally every year and aims to explain the causes of occupational cancer and help businesses take action.
Roberts Jackson supports awareness campaign
Asbestos disease expert, Brian Robinson, from industrial disease specialists Roberts Jackson, said:
“With 5000 people dying from asbestos-related mesothelioma every year in the UK, we need to ensure no one, especially those most at risk of exposure, should be unaware of the dangers. Companies, especially small outfits, can save lives by raising awareness amongst their workers. There are plenty of free resources on IOSH’s website as well as the Health & Safety Executive’s website. Let’s ensure no one is ignorant of the deadly dangers of this material”