A Cornwall development company, Norwegian Homes Limited, has been fined £4,500 for failing to undertake a survey for the presence of dangerous asbestos fibres when demolishing a Hotel.

During a site visit, Health and Safety Executive inspections discovered suspected asbestos insulation boards around the site.  The samples were later confirmed to contain asbestos.

The Court heard there were no measures in place to properly remove the asbestos-containing material and nor were there any protections in place for staff working on the site.

Norwegian Homes pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 15 of the Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations 2002 and was ordered to pay £11,959 in costs in addition to the fine.

HSE inspector, Martin Lee, said:

“Asbestos is extremely harmful to human health and is the most serious occupational health issue in the country.  More than 4,000 die annually from asbestos related diseases.”

“Norwegian Homes should have carried out a survey for the presence and quantity of asbestos in the building prior to demolition.”

“This incident was entirely preventable and the clear-up costs far outstripped the costs of a survey and safe removal of the asbestos material.”