Asbestos Awareness Campaign - Question To RICS

RICS logoFollowing an enquiry by a RICS member who stated that 'the RICS' had advised them not to proceed with the management of asbestos in their practice because they could not be insured through the RICS, we asked the RICS for their comment. This is their reply;

Contrary to what you may have been led to believe we see the Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations as a potential market opportunity for members who wish to carry out type 1 or 2 inspections.

However, as with all the work that RICS members do, they are expected to have professional indemnity insurance cover for that type of work and take steps to ensure that they are competent within that field. The members then negotiate their own insurance cover from firms listed by our insurance department. I am aware that the market has hardened regarding asbestos related work and our insurance department has been advising members who contact them directly on how best to deal with this.

The RICS is also devising a course for certifying asbestos inspectors under the UKAS accreditation process with another partner that will be open to both members and non-members who are able to satisfy the entry standards. Due to the insurance market situation it is anticipated that the scheme will include some form of specific insurance cover for its participants, this is being negotiated at present.

We are aware that the new regulations will affect many of our members both directly and indirectly, whether acting as clients or consultants, and are trying to raise awareness in various ways including road shows and a guidance note.

RICS have also informed us that the Guidance Note is being developed in consultation with HSE and will be circulated to their members very soon.