The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 came into force on the 6th April 2012 but in reality it changed very little from the previous asbestos regulations. It’s very important not to take these regulations lightly. They are far reaching and dealt with very seriously by the courts when prosecuted by the HSE. It remains the case that the person in charge of the building (the duty holder) must identify what type of asbestos exists in a property, where it is and the condition of the asbestos. The risks needs to be assessed and managed to ensure the health and safety of those likely to be endangered. This will ensure compliance with Regulation 4 and 5 CAR 2012. Breaches of CAR 2012 are likely to be brought under s.33 Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.
In terms of sentencing such breaches, this will be a staged approach and the following will be determined:
- Culpability (Very high, high, medium or low)
- Harm (Asbestos will always be Level A – death, physical or mental impairment, significantly reduced life expectancy)
- Whether there was a High, medium or low likelihood of harm (often expert evidence is required for this)
- Review of any financial element of the offence
High culpability (where the offender intentionally breached or flagrantly disregarded the law) with a high likelihood of harm (harm category 1) could result in immediate custody with a starting point of 12 months so it’s important to seek advice from us at the earliest opportunity.
We have an excellent track record defending prosecutions under Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 following breaches of CAR 2012 so contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org or call me 07886777784