Asbestos-related work

Although work with asbestos is generally prohibited, the Work Health and Safety (National Uniform Legislation) Regulations allow limited asbestos-related work to occur.

Permitted asbestos-related work includes:

  • genuine research and analysis
  • sampling and identification of asbestos in accordance with the Regulations
  • maintenance of non-friable asbestos in accordance with the Regulations
  • transport and disposal of asbestos in line with the Waste Management and Pollution Control Act
  • demonstrations, education or practical training
  • display, preparation or maintenance of an artefact that contains asbestos
  • management of in situ asbestos in accordance with the Regulations
  • management of naturally occurring asbestos in accordance with the Regulations
  • disturbance of asbestos during mining exploration or extraction operations for a mineral other than asbestos
  • laundering asbestos-contaminated clothing in accordance with the Regulations
  • working with soil that a competent person has determined does not contain visible asbestos or does not contain more than trace levels of asbestos

When asbestos-related work activities are performed, the following requirements must be met:

  • workers must be informed of the health risks of exposure to asbestos and health monitoring requirements
  • a competent person must carry out air monitoring of the work area if there is any uncertainty about whether the exposure standard is likely to be exceeded
  • any asbestos that may be encountered by workers must be identified
  • so far as is possible, the area where the asbestos-related work is carried out must be separate from the rest of the work place
  • the work area must be signed and barricaded to ensure other workers do not enter
  • decontamination facilities for workers, equipment and the items worked on must be provided
  • anything removed from the work area must be decontaminated before being removed
  • asbestos-contaminated material or personal protective equipment that is to be removed from the work area must be sealed within a container, which is decontaminated and labelled before being disposed of at a licensed disposal facility as soon as reasonably practicable

Further information about asbestos-related work can be found in the NT WorkSafe Code of Practice:

How to manage and control asbestos in the workplace (pdf 443 kb)