Recent storms that rocked much of the UK also uncovered asbestos in almost all of the private beach huts on the Milford on Sea, Hampshire coastal resort. Asbestos sheeting was found at the bottom of the roof slabs in the huts.
However, local New Forest District Council confirms that specialist contractors were engaged to remove the exposed asbestos but the remaining asbestos is not dangerous as it has not been disturbed, but has been fenced off from the public since February. The Council indicated that they undertook a risk assessment and structural survey of the site which highlighted that many of the huts suffered from structural defects.
The owners of the huts have been notified. Councillor Edward Heron said, “We appreciate people’s sentiment for their beach huts and no doubt there will be disappointment in seeing some go, but our main priority at this stage is to ensure public safety.”
I commend the local Council for taking immediate action to resolve the potential hazard that asbestos can pose. As seen here, Councils have an obligation to their residents and those who visit, especially in high public areas such as beaches and coastlines, to ensure that all are made aware of the dangers when asbestos is present. Most Council's have information and literature on their website as to what to do if asbestos is found, including the removal and disposal of this asbestos. New Forest District Council is one of these Councils.
Although asbestos diseases such as Mesothelioma can take years or decades to develop, anyone exposed to asbestos fibres, dust or asbestos waste materials should register any exposure as soon as possible. This is to ensure correct details of the exposure are maintained, and that advice can be provided to people about what they should do in the future.
Slater and Gordon maintain a National Asbestos Register, to register free of charge call Dominic Smith on 0161 383 3527 or freephone 0800 916 9046 or contact us online and we'll be happy to help you.
By Alison Kerr, an Asbestos Disease Solicitor at Slater and Gordon Lawyers in London.
Slater and Gordon have offices in London, Manchester, Liverpool, Sheffield, Bristol, Birmingham, Milton Keynes, Cambridge, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Newcastle, Halifax, Wakefield & meeting rooms in Bramhall, Cheshire.