Where appropriate, asbestos can be encapsulated, rather than being removed. A risk assessment should be carried out prior to any asbestos encapsulation works to ensure this is the best course of action.
Asbestos encapsulation can take many different forms, depending on the nature of the material. Encapsulation can be defined as the application of an impervious material, which is secured over or around an asbestos containing material (ACM), and is designed to prevent the release of fibres under foreseeable conditions, such as vibration, impact and age degradation. Encapsulation should maintain the beneficial properties of the original asbestos application and maintain it in a safe condition.
As encapsulation of an ACM is classified as working with asbestos, it is subject to the requirements of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 (CAR). Encapsulation should always be carried out by a licensed contractor wherever possible, however there are some circumstances where this is not required.