Asbestos Surveying Part 4: The Survey Report

Asbestos Surveying Part 4: Survey Reports - What Exactly Should Be In It?

 
Hello again. Last time out you will recall we did the survey in Asbestos Surveying Part 3: Doing The Survey. So, having carried out the survey, collected all necessary information, taken the samples, and had them analysised; its time to take all that data and present it in a useful and useable informative way in a report.
 

What is a Survey Report

 
A survey reports is a record of the information collected at a particular time on the presence of asbestos containing Materials (ACM’s). The document is the formal record of the survey undertaken.
The survey report will contain the information and data that will be used to prepare risk assessment and management plan and to make judgements on the need for actions. Errors in the report could lead to incorrect conclusions and inappropriate decisions. You should  therefore always take care and pay attention when producing the report, particularly in moving data.
The report should be completed in a written format, supplied either as a hard copy or as an electronic document, or as both.
It should be clear, understandable, and useable by the customer. In particular, the information in the survey report should be easy for the customer to extract and to use to prepare an asbestos register.
 
The design, layout, content and size of the report are very important. Large reports can be unmanageable and even intimidating. Customers are most interested in the summary, results, conclusions and actions. The report should be separated into different parts to make it more helpful.
 

What is in a Survey Report

 
The survey report should contain the following sections:

1. Executive Summary – briefly describes the scope, type and extent of the survey and it should summarise the most important information - such as locations with identified or presumed ACM’s; areas not accessed; ACM’s with high material assessment scores; notes and actions (and priorities)

2. Introduction – this should explain the scope of the work and the purpose, aims and objectives of the survey. It should also contain a description of the nature and age of the building(s)/structures being surveyed, as well as the construction type.

3. General Site & Survey Information – this should cover the following:

  • Name and address of the organization undertaking survey
  • Name of the surveyor(s)
  • Name and address of person who commissioned the survey
  • Name and address of the premise(s) surveyed
  • Date of the Survey & Date of the Issuance of Report
  • Description of areas included in the survey
  • Description of areas excluded in the survey
  • Survey Method used
  • Type of Survey undertaken (management or refurbishment/demolition) and if more than one type of survey used where it applies within premise
  • Any variations or deviations from the method
  • Agreed exclusions and inaccessible areas (with reasons) which should be specific to the survey

4. Survey Results – The results should be summarized in a table format (commonly known as anInspection Register)and as a set of marked up plans/diagrams showing the location of the ACM’s and presumed ACM’s. The summary table should contain the following information:

  • Location of the ACM’s (e.g. building identifier, floor number or level, room identifier, and position)
  • Extent of the ACM’s (area, length, thickness and volume – as appropriate)
  • Product Type
  • Level of Identification of the ACM (presumed, strongly presumed or identified)
  • Asbestos Type in the ACM (e.g. Chrysotile, Amosite, Crocidolite)
In a management survey (and refurbishment and demolition surveys where the work is not imminent) the following additional information should also be provided:
  • Accessibility of the ACM
  • Amount of Damage or Deterioration  
  • Surface Treatment (if any)
  • Material Assessment Score or Category (High, Medium, Low, Very Low)
  • Any Actions required from the material assessment
** NOTE 1: Where suspect materials are proven not to be asbestos, by sampling or other means, this should be recorded in a separate table. This will help in any future debate over the nature of these materials. This is sometimes referred to as the Negative Inspection Register.**
**NOTE 2: If a Priority Assessment has been requested by customer and included, it should only be done so with the consultation of customer or duty holder, who must provide accurate information on all the activities carried out on the premise**

5. Conclusion and Actions – The conclusion section should summarise the rooms where asbestos is present and the products/items which contain asbestos. It should be an ‘easy guide’ for the customer. It should also contain a list of any actions identified in the material assessment (or priority assessment if included) and indicate their urgency, e.g. immediate, middle/long term.

6. Bulk Sample Analysis Results – The survey report should include a certificate of Analysis (undertaken by UKAS accredited laboratory) showing results for all samples taken. This data can be listed in an appendix with the following information:

  • Name and address of the laboratory carrying out the bulk identification
  • Reference to the method used
  • Laboratory’s current UKAS accreditation of bulk asbestos analysis/sampling and accreditation number
  • Table summarizing the results of the bulk analysis, including asbestos found or not found and types identified, by sample identifier.
  • Dates the samples were received
  • Dates the bulk analysis were carried out and reported by laboratory
  • Name and signatures of the analyst and any countersigning person

7. Photographs & Diagrams – Photographs & Diagrams can be very informative to the customer and should be included in the report. Photographs can show the material sampled, its condition and location and its surrounding environment. Diagrams can show building plans in relation to key information: sample location points, sample cross-referencing points, areas outside scope of works and areas non-accessible – to name but a few.

 
Photographs provide a context for the sample and can assist the customer in managing asbestos, and in conjunction with Diagrams/Plans can be useful to identify the actual sampling points. However it is important not to dominate the report with photographs and unnecessarily have a single page per photograph.
Hopefully you can now better appreciate what a survey report is and what should be in it. At some point in the near future we will provide examples of different survey reports to further enhance your understanding.
Next time round, we will be focusing on how to actually use the survey information collected and presented within the report, so stay tuned!
If you believe your commercial or private property may have asbestos, you have a responsibility to manage it. ESSS, a UKAS and ISO accredited asbestos consultancy, is equipped to determine the extent of your asbestos situation and develop a plan for the management and/or removal of it. Contact us today at 01268 755 464 or by visiting http://www.esss.co.uk/.
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