Residents’ fears over asbestos warning signs
Residents of four highrise blocks of flats fear they have been exposed to asbestos during fire safety works.
Specialist contractors wearing protective clothing and masks have been fitting new smoke and heat alarms to the flats in Sandyhills, Glasgow.
Signs warning “Danger! Asbestos removal in progress” and stating “no access for unauthorised persons” are placed on the landings while the work is being done.
But tenants at the Glasgow Housing Association buildings have been allowed to stay in their flats as holes for cables are drilled in the ceilings.
Resident Charles Brewster, 48, said: “There is asbestos throughout the building, but they have just let people stay in their flats while this is going on.”
Another resident added: “Their workmen are wearing protective suits and masks but they don’t protect the tenants.
“The signs are really alarming people.”
Asbestos expert Professor Robin Howie said the fire-retardant material poses varying degrees of risk when it is disturbed.
“There is no way someone should be working with asbestos in an occupied flat.
“I can’t understand the logic of workmen wearing protective clothing and equipment in a flat which people are permitted to live in.”
GHA initially claimed to have no knowledge of the “alarming” warning signs seen by tenants.
The housing association confirmed asbestos is present, but is not being removed and work is not carried out with tenants in the same room. Health and safety tests showed absolutely no risk.
GHA managing director Jennifer Russell said: “We’re using a specialist contractor and some of the staff are wearing protective clothing.
“Safety is always our top priority and this is simply an extra precaution due to the age of the building.”
One of the warning signs outside the flats