As asbestos is naturally occurring mineral, there are always fibres in the atmosphere and in the UK we are exposed to them. These fibres occur in very low concentration levels in nature, but problems arise when working on or near damaged asbestos which can result in breathing in much higher numbers of fibres, hundreds of times that of normal environmental levels. It is these higher fibre levels that greatly increases the chances of getting an asbestos related disease.
Diseases related to asbestos have long-term effects and will begin to affect the individual in later life. Protection now can prevent you from contracting an asbestos related disease later. It is also worth noting that smokers who are also exposed to asbestos fibres are much more likely to develop lung cancer.
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What you need to know as a duty holder