Unlicensed removal of asbestos can be carried out by homeowners, however even small jobs are best undertaken by experts who are trained to do it safely. If you are considering a renovation or demolition that involves disturbing large amounts of asbestos cement materials, removing friable asbestos products, or demolition of all or part of your property, you are strongly advised to engage a licensed asbestos removalist who knows how to manage this work safely, and without risks to you or your neighbours.
Generally, asbestos removal is required to be carried out by a removalist licensed by WorkSafe, or trained employees of a licence holder. The licence holder is usually required to notify WorkSafe in advance before any asbestos removal work is carried out.
There are two types of licences for asbestos removalists.
Class B licence holders are only permitted to perform Class B asbestos removal work, which means asbestos removal work (other than limited asbestos removal work) involving the removal of:
- non-friable asbestos, or
- asbestos-contaminated dust associated with or derived from the removal of non-friable asbestos.
Class B asbestos removalists must comply with a number of requirements, including:
- appointing a nominated supervisor to oversee the removal work
- developing an asbestos control plan before the job commences
- informing all employers and other persons occupying premises in the immediate and adjacent areas of proposed domestic removal work
- using specific methods for removal, asbestos waste containment and disposal
- using signs and barricades
- providing decontamination facilities
- providing their employees with information, training, personal protective clothing and equipment, and medical examinations.
Class A licence holders are permitted to perform Class B and Class A asbestos removal work, which means asbestos removal work (other than limited asbestos removal work) involving the removal of:
- friable asbestos, or
- asbestos-contaminated dust (other than asbestos-contaminated dust associated with or derived from the removal of non-friable asbestos).
Class A licence holders must comply with the same requirements outlined above for Class B licence holders, and must also implement a range of specific measures to carry out the work safely and control the risk, including using enclosures and always having the nominated supervisor on site.
Reviewed 14 January 2021