Fears Grow That Colwyn Bay Pier Asbestos Could Contaminate Beach
A Conwy Council report has issued a stark warning that asbestos sheeting used in the construction of Colwyn Bay pier’s main pavilion in the 30s could break up and potentially contaminate the beach.
According to the BBC, the pier has been closed since 2008 and actually started to collapse at the start of the year. A storm resulted in further damage to the structure and some of it had to be demolished as an emergency precaution.
The council states that if the pier is hit by bad weather – and we’re supposed to be battered by six storms before December 25th this year – it could break up. As such, it’s keen for it to be dismantled as soon as possible, but approval from the Welsh government is required before work can begin.
A marine licence from environment organisation Natural Resources Wales is also required and the council is worried that it may not have all the necessary permissions in place before the bad winter weather takes hold.
An internal council report on the matter reads: “The external walls of the pavilion were in a very poor condition when the deck was accessed some three to four years ago. It is surprising that they have not yet failed under wind load.
“If the walls fail, then a dominant opening would form, significantly increasing the wind pressure within the pavilion, leading to a high risk of the asbestos cement sheets being lost from the structure.”
Back in February, the Daily Post reported that plans to develop the pier and restore it back to its former glory had to be shelved after the Colwyn Victoria Pier Trust’s bid for funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund was turned down. It was thought that the project was too high risk for such an investment.
Given that asbestos may soon contaminate the beach, it seems that something must be done regarding the pier – and quickly, before winter arrives. When damaged, asbestos materials can release tiny fibres that can cause serious and even fatal diseases if inhaled.
As such, you must make asbestos awareness a top priority if it’s likely that you’ll encounter this particular substance at work. According to the Health and Safety Executive, asbestos is actually the single biggest cause of work-related deaths here in the UK, killing around 4,500 people a year… so as you can see, it’s important that you do know what your responsibilities are if you’re going to be working anywhere near it.
It’s now illegal to use the material in the building or the refurbishment of any premises, but thousands of tonnes of it have been used in the past for the likes of roofing material, insulation, lagging and sprayed coatings for insulation purposes+. If your job involves disturbing anything like this, you could be exposed to asbestos fibres – so you do need to know what to do in case.
Taking a course is a good idea – so get in touch with us today to find out how we can help.