Coffey nabs Australia’s first asbestos accreditation

The business is now the only consultancy in Australia to hold all four national accreditations for asbestos and hazardous materials management work – surveying, air monitoring/fibre counting, fibre identification and clearance inspections.Occupational health and safety group leader for Coffey Environments in Queensland, Lee McAlister-Smiley, said as part of the accreditation process all internal procedures for asbestos clearance undertaken by the company were submitted to NATA for peer review.“Overall, the accreditation process took about eight months. Once all our procedures were submitted to NATA, two independent assessors conducted the peer review and we were required to demonstrate our competency and amend some procedures,” he said.“The accreditation was timely as we were able to change some of our procedures ahead of the implementation of recently announced legislation changes, ensuring we are well positioned to assist our clients.” McAlister-Smiley said the introduction of the Fair Work Act in January and the move to national occupational health and safety laws were likely to impact the way in which Australian businesses managed asbestos and other hazardous materials.Also, OHS legislation is set to undergo major reform as part of a move towards one national set of laws developed by Safe Work Australia.Each state and territory will be required to pass mirror laws by December 2011. Under the new laws, a wide range of facilities may be newly identified as sites that require a plan to manage asbestos, including commercial and industrial structures, refineries, vessels and offshore facilities and contaminant materials in mineral ores.

Send this to a friend