EssentialSkillz has added a new Asbestos Awareness E-Learning course to its large suite of interactive E-Learning solutions aimed at the health & safety and human resource industries. The brand new course is fully editable using the authoring tool provided by EssentialSkillz, which has the advantage of enabling companies to edit any content that they want, to more closely reflect their internal requirements. Therefore, added details like specific on-site safety precautions, or a particular business address could be added to the pre-existing content to make it more relevant to the users.
The number of deaths that are thought to be caused by exposure to asbestos containing materials (ACMs) are estimated to be more than 5,000 every year in the UK according to the HSE (Health and Safety Executive). This figure makes asbestos the single biggest cause of work-related deaths in the country, yet many businesses are not fully aware of how dangerous it is, nor do they have the necessary knowledge or expertise to know what to do if they come across it.
The reason why deaths from asbestos are not highlighted as often in the media, is simply because the symptoms usually take a long time to present themselves. A construction worker who came into contact with asbestos 20 years ago, may only experience the cancerous symptoms caused by the substance today. However there is clear and indisputable evidence that however long it takes to have an impact, asbestos endangers and ends lives.
A Supreme Court hearing earlier this year ruled that insurance liability should begin at the time of first contact with the asbestos material rather than at first appearance of symptoms. So on top of the tragic human cost, the compensation costs are set to rise massively and things are getting worse with the number of people affected by mesothelioma (cancer caused by asbestos exposure) expected to peak in 2015. This is because the use of asbestos was not banned until as recently as 1999. It is now against the law to use asbestos materials in the construction of any new buildings or premises, but the reality is that there are still a huge number of commercial, industrial, residential and public infrastructures all around the UK that contain asbestos material as they were built long before the ban was introduced.
And although workers in the construction industry are most at risk of asbestos exposure, the sheer prevalence of the dangerous material in so many different types of buildings throughout the UK means that a whole range of different types of workers would do well to train themselves in recognising ACMs and to gain the knowledge of how to go about the process of having these dangerous materials safely removed.
Julian Roberts, Managing Director of EssentialSkillz says their new Asbestos Awareness course delivers the information needed by employees:
"Employers are legally obliged to educate employees who are likely to come into contact with asbestos, about the necessary safety protocols to deal with it. Our course does just this and so much more. The information provided is detailed, thorough and up-to-date and will ensure that any employee or contractor will know exactly what they're dealing with and how to deal with it. Asbestos-related deaths are growing and it is crucial that workers are aware of the dangers of asbestos containing materials and are informed of the correct safety requirements when working in proximity to the materials. We put a lot of work into producing this course and we know it will be effective in helping members of the workforce out there combat the threat posed by asbestos".