Asbestos removal firm guilty of forging paperwork
An asbestos removal company and two of its managers have been prosecuted for forging documents in order to obtain an asbestos licence from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
Greater Manchester Magistrates’ Court heard how Excavation and Contracting (UK) used both forged medical certificates and forged asbestos training certificates for their asbestos removal operatives.
The documents had been made by the asbestos operations manager David Lloyd and included medicals in the name of the company operations manager Lee Cooper and the managing director, Brendan O’Halloran.
The doctor who allegedly issued the medical certificates had retired some years earlier to live outside the UK.
An HSE investigation found the defendants had used forged documents to obtain an asbestos licence from HSE in order to trade.
The investigation also found the company could not show that it had properly trained or adequately monitored its workers who were exposed to asbestos.
David Lloyd of Hanwell Close, Leigh, pleaded guilty to breaching regulations 10(1)(a) and 22(1)(c) of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 and was ordered to undertake 80 hours of community service and pay costs of £1,000.
Excavation and Contracting (UK) Ltd of West Quay Road, Warrington, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulations 10(1)(a) and 22(1)(c) of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 and was fined £13,000 and ordered to pay costs of £10,000.
HSE inspector Matt Greenly said: “Putting people at risk from asbestos by not training them or monitoring their health, as required by law, not only puts their lives at risk from an incurable set of diseases, but is also wholly unnecessary.
“There are ample affordable training providers and approved doctors who can carry out these functions at the convenience of the contractor.
“Taking deliberate shortcuts by creating forged documents will not be tolerated by HSE and we will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards.”