Housing provider spends £180,000 to reduce asbestos risk

A new asbestos management'plan has been introduced
A new asbestos management'plan has been introduced

The region’s largest registered social landlord is seeking to appoint a single contractor to identify potentially dangerous asbestos in its properties.

The Scottish Borders Housing Association (SBHA), which owns 5,663 former local authority homes, has this week invited tenders for a surveying contract which will be worth around £180,000 over the next three years.

“We aim to ensure all materials containing asbestos are effectively managed and any risk to tenants is reduced to its lowest practical level,” said an SBHA spokesperson.

The new contractor will be in place before the Selkirk-based landlord announces its new five year investment programme early next year.

“Most homes, not just ours, which were built between the 1950s and the 1990s are likely to contain some materials which contain asbestos,” said the spokesperson.

“Like all housing providers, SBHA has arrangements in place for the removal of asbestos before major works.

“We have recently introduced a new asbestos management plan and, as part of this, we are re-tendering our arrangements for the inspection and removal of asbestos…moving from a list of preferred suppliers to a longer-term framework arrangement which will give value for money, economy of scale and provide a faster service.

“In future years we are likely to be undertaking considerable works to the outside of homes, so the level of inspection will be increasing.

“The inspections allow us to plan for and manage risks around asbestos being disturbed during these works.

“Where removal is necessary, the arrangements are undertaken by licensed contractors.”