• Safety/Hazard Cont: Asbestos Testing Cabinets Meets the Necessary Legislation

Laboratory Products

Safety/Hazard Cont: Asbestos Testing Cabinets Meets the Necessary Legislation

Feb 14 2006

When inspecting materials stripped from buildings during refurbishment or demolition, Bigneat believe it is necessary to protect everyone, at all stages, from potential inhalation of asbestos fibres. This extends to the operator in the laboratory handling samples of asbestos for testing and identification.

Primary methods of inspection of the asbestos fibres include the use of Stereo and Polarised Light Microscopes. Using these methods it is possible to differentiate asbestos from non-asbestos fibres and further classify the various species that compose the asbestos mineral family.

Health and Safety Guidelines state that the handling of test samples must be undertaken within a safety hood, with air drawn away from the operator taking any mobilised particles safely away. Ideal for providing this safe environment is the Bigneat Asbestos Safety Cabinet, designed to be ductless and mobile. Bigneat's cabinet draws air upwards and through a HEPA filter for trapping stray asbestos particles, returning the cleaned air back to the laboratory.

Mike Smith/Quality and Training Manager at Asbestos Analysis Services Ltd comments on his Bigneat cabinet, ?Bigneat's Asbestos Safety cabinets satisfy our needs by removing 99.997% of particles within the filter system. I am happy that this is satisfying legislation and provides my colleagues and me with the necessary protection when we are inspecting samples'.

This legislation is covered within HSE publication HSG 248 (?Asbestos: The analysts' guide for sampling, analysis and clearance procedures') which states that an asbestos inspection cabinet must conform to BS 7258. This in turn stipulates that at the working face of a cabinet there should be a minimum of 0.5ms-1 flow-rate and the cabinet should alarm if the face velocity falls below this value. This is a feature of Bigneat's Asbestos Safety Cabinet.

Additionally these cabinets have the major advantage over conventional fume cupboards, that they can be supplied with a mobile trolley and located at the exact location where the inspection is most comfortably undertaken.

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