Aberdeen City Council has failed to get on top of asbestos incidents, a councillor has claimed.
It comes following a number of incidents involving the local authority which have come to light over the course of the last 14 months.
Health and safety investigators discovered the council potentially exposed workers to the material after an incident at Seaton’s Beachview Court in November and during work at Bridge of Don Academy last July.
Speaking before members of the council’s staff governance committee yesterday, Councillor David Cameron said the council had failed to get on top of asbestos incidents.
He added: “We are 14 months on from Bridge of Don and also Beachview and we’re now aware there’s an incident in relation to Kincorth Academy.
“Obviously we’re not getting on top of this as well as we would like to, including the people looking at it.”
Council bosses confirmed in August that the demolition of Kincorth Academy had been stopped after asbestos was discovered in its roof.
A report presented to members of the committee yesterday outlined a number of preventative procedures which the authority is aiming to implement in future.
Among them was a requirement that the asbestos team have the necessary respiratory asbestos equipment when a risk to exposure exists.
The report states this is “not yet in place” but is being developed by operational teams with the expectation that it will be completed this year.
Questioning officers, Mr Cameron asked why this was not yet in place since it has been a requirement in legislation for a “long time”.
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Council officer John Wilson said he “didn’t have the figures” on what was still to be implemented but added that RPE would “certainly be a requirement” when working with contractors.
He also told councillors that the council expects asbestos surveys to be carried out before any work begins in a new location.
Mr Cameron called for councillors on the committee to consider an item on asbestos incidents for the next three committee cycles to ensure the issue remains prominent.
Liam Knox, from Unite the union, welcomed the matter becoming an agenda item.
He said: “It is moving forward and in the right direction now but incidents are still occurring and they shouldn’t be.”
An internal investigation was carried out into the incident at Bridge of Don Academy, and it was also reported to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), who found that despite being warned that a damaged door contained asbestos two years ago, the council had not replaced it.
HSE and the local authority made some recommendations in the wake of the incident, including making sure that any available asbestos survey is provided electronically to all relevant contractors on site.
This will be available to design teams and building services and can be shared with contractors.