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HSE pledges 4,000 training hours target on asbestos

The Health and Safety Executive has set a poignant target of 4,000 hours of free asbestos awareness training to help tradesmen across Britain protect themselves from the deadly dust.

The Health and Safety Executive has set a poignant target of 4,000 hours of free asbestos awareness training to help tradesmen across Britain protect themselves from the deadly dust

The HSE is calling for those who run training courses to pledge free hours during September to hit a target of 4,000 - the approximate number of deaths each year from asbestos-related diseases.

It is hoped that 4,000 face-to-face training hours and an additional 4,000 hours of online training will be offered up by various providers.

The free training will be available throughout October and November and is aimed at tradesmen including electricians who are most likely to disturb the fibres as they go about their work. The HSE says around 20 a week lose their lives to asbestos-related diseases.

HSE's director for long latency health risks, Karen Clayton, said, "Our Hidden Killer campaign is helping tradesmen understand the lifesaving fact that asbestos exposure is not just an historical problem - around half a million public buildings still contain it.

"This new initiative, a continuation of the campaign, is all about tradesmen finding out exactly what they need to do to protect themselves by taking advantage of free training.
"There is sadly little we can do to help those who are already suffering the often fatal effects of asbestos exposure in the workplace, but we can prevent this hidden killer claiming another generation.

"Through industry playing its part and asbestos support groups helping us to get the messages out about the importance of training, we can all do something practical to ensure that the risk to workers is minimised."

Independent Asbestos Training Providers (IATP) and the UK Asbestos Training Association (UKATA) are working with HSE by inviting their members to pledge. Members of the Asbestos Safety Health Environmental e-Learning Association (ASHEeLA) are also invited to provide free online training courses.

Training providers looking to pledge hours are invited to visit the campaign website For more information and full details of the offer, visit www.hse.gov.uk/asbestos/training-pledge.htm and those wanting to sign up to free training can see what is being pledged in their area by following links on the site.


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