New accreditation scheme for inspecting asbestos
Deteriorated or altered asbestos materials can lead to asbestos fibres being emitted into the environment, which is a serious health risk, as being inhaled by people in their work environment is a cause of serious diseases such as asbestosis, lung cancer, larynx cancer and mesothelioma. In Spain, its marketing and use has been prohibited since 2002 and Spanish legislation requires asbestos materials to be identified, and necessary preventive measures and actions planned for their conservation and, when the time comes, its elimination must be implemented.
To achieve these objectives, it is essential to have reliable methods for locating and diagnosing products and materials with asbestos, the UNE 171370-2 standard, recently published by UNE, establishes a standardized inspection procedure to determine the presence of asbestos and its state of conservation, and narrows the scope of the inspection according to the purpose of the diagnosis, either to manage it when it is kept in use or for its withdrawal before a work or reform.
Confidence in these inspections and assessments will depend to a large extent on the credibility of the bodies that carry them out, and on the confidence that the market and society at large have in them. It is essential for the end-user to be able to rely on the results of these assessments, that the bodies carrying them out act impartially and independently, and that have the necessary technical competence to ensure that their assessments are reliable.
With this end in mind, ENAC has developed an accreditation scheme in accordance with the UNE-EN ISO/IEC 17020 standard for inspecting asbestos according to the criteria established in the UNE 171370-2 standard, at this time ENAC is in a position to receive applications for accreditation.
This inspection scheme will be supported by the laboratories already accredited for determining asbestos in materials, in addition this accreditation enables them to meet the requirement established for them in the UNE standard.
Those interested in this accreditation can contact Francisco Ordeig from ENAC's Environment Department: email@example.com.
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