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Worker exposed to dangerously high levels of asbestos in Bath

Formac Electronics Ltd. has been fined after a builder was exposed to high levels of a type of asbestos linked to cancer.

Jonathan Arnold, 49, of Castle Cary was fitting pipework for a new central heating system at Oxford House, in Combe Down, Bath when he was exposed to high levels of blue asbestos (crocidolite).

In a prosecution brought by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) against the building's owners, Formac Electronics Ltd., Bath Magistrates' Court heard the airborne substance was disturbed and spread within the building during refurbishment.

The court was told that, for a five-hour period on 4 August, Mr Arnold was estimated to have been exposed to a high concentration of airborne asbestos fibres many times over the control limit.

HSE investigated the incident and found Formac Electronics Ltd. had failed to carry out a refurbishment and demolition survey, to establish the presence and condition of asbestos in the building.

It also failed to provide suitable information to contractors prior to the start of the refurbishment works which resulted in uncontrolled disturbance of the loose fill blue asbestos located within the fabric of the building.

The company, of Oxford House, Combe Down, Bath, admitted breaching Regulation 10 of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007 and was fined £600 with £6,013.45 in costs.

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