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Meet the Asbestos Team: A Day in the Life of a Laboratory Analyst

Meet the Asbestos Team: A Day in the Life of a Laboratory Analyst

Tom Pratt has worked as a laboratory analyst for SOCOTEC for the last four years, being responsible for managing the workload within the lab and ensuring that agreed turnaround times are met by allocating appropriate resources to each particular work stream. In this piece, Tom outlines his key responsibilities of his varied role, which ranges from quality control checks to laboratory tours.…

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Mapping Asbestos in Concrete: Laying the Foundations for Safe Building Demolition

Mapping Asbestos in Concrete: Laying the Foundations for Safe Building Demolition

Until the late 1970s, asbestos was a commonly used building material and, despite its use declining until a total ban was implemented in 1999, its legacy lives on in over 5.5 million buildings in the UK. This can bring a number of challenges when it comes to building demolition, due to the health and safety hazards involved in managing asbestos and asbestos containing materials (ACMs). It is crucial to establish the extent of such substances prior to carrying out any refurbishment or demolition work on a building.…

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Training is key to top-notch asbestos management

Training is key to top-notch asbestos management

Despite being banned in 1999, asbestos is still widespread across the UK built environment. Asbestos containing materials (ACMs), such as old ceiling tiles, plasterboard and wall insulation, may still be present in buildings - particularly those built before the late 1970s. Meanwhile, traces of the substance may be found in remnants of paints and other coatings after the original ACM has been removed, or even in soils after the building has been demolished.…

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The Importance of Soil Testing in 2016

The Importance of Soil Testing in 2016

The Government has said that over the next five years it plans to directly commission the construction of thousands of new homes on public land. David Cameron described this announcement as the biggest shift in house building policy in the last 30 years. These plans will be backed up by an extra £1.2 billion to help remediate brownfield sites for tens of thousands of new homes across the country. This is an important step forward, with the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) estimating there is capacity for at least one million new homes on suitable brownfield land in England alone.…

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Digging Up the Dirt on Soils

Digging Up the Dirt on Soils

The UN has declared 2015 its ‘International Year of Soils’ putting the so called ‘dirt’ that’s under our feet well and truly in the spotlight. Acknowledging the importance that soil plays in our everyday lives, we assembled four of SOCOTEC’s soil experts to discuss what the declaration means for soil, what the future holds for soil legislation and testing, and what SOCOTEC can offer those looking for guidance. Those scientists included Simon Mason (principal soil and environmental scientist, Infrastructure Services), Charlotte Reeve (operations manager, Infrastructure Services), James Dodgson (business development manager, Built Environment Services and Chair of SOCOTEC, formerly ESG, Asbestos in Soils working group), and Amy Parekh-Pross (technical marketing manager, Energy & Waste Services).…

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