Unions and councillors have raised fears that equipment to protect Aberdeen council workers from asbestos exposure is not in place – despite nearly 30-year-old legislation requiring it.
Under the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992, employers are required to provide suitable equipment to anyone whose health might be at risk.
But a report to yesterday’s staff governance committee at the city council revealed that not all employees have access to respiratory protective equipment (RPE), despite high-profile asbestos incidents over the past 18 months.
Last summer the deadly substance was discovered by workers at Bridge of Don Academy, and no emergency response was ordered for five days.
In November it was again found in Beachview Court.
During the demolition of Kincorth Academy in August, work was halted when asbestos was discovered.
The report added that the council hopes to meet its goal of providing RPE access to employees by the end of the year.
SNP councillor David Cameron said: “We are now 14 months on from Bridge of Don and we have had other incidents at Beachview and Kincorth.
“We are obviously not getting on top of the situation as much as we would like.”
Liam Knox of the Unite union said he would like the committee to monitor the situation closely, agreeing that union members were “at risk”.
He said: “We have seen various incidents recently and it is something that needs to be kept a close eye on.”
But the committee was told that detailed asbestos surveys were required before work is undertaken either by the council or external contractors.