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Occupational Health and Safety Act, 1993 (Act No. 85 of 1993)


Asbestos Regulations, 2001

5. Information and training


(1) An employer shall, before any employee is exposed or may be exposed to asbestos dust, after consultation with the health and safety committee established for that section of the workplace, ensure that the employee is adequately and comprehensively informed and trained, on both practical aspects and theoretical knowledge, with regard to—
(a) the contents and scope of these Regulations;
(b) the potential sources of exposure, including the recognition of derelict asbestos-containing materials;
(c) the potential health risk caused by exposure to asbestos, including the health risks to employees’ families and others, which could result from taking home asbestos contaminated equipment and clothing, and the dramatically increased risk of lung cancer for asbestos workers who smoke;
(d) the measures taken by the employer to protect an employee against any risk from exposure;
(e) the precautions to be taken by the employee to protect himself or herself against. the health risks associated with the exposure, which precautions include the wearing and use of protective clothing and respiratory protective equipment;
(f) the necessity, correct use, maintenance and limitations of protective equipment, facilities and engineering control measures provided;
(g) the assessment of exposure, the purpose of air sampling, the necessity for medical surveillance and the long term benefits and limitations thereof;
(h) the occupational exposure limit and its meaning;
(i) the importance of good housekeeping at the workplace and personal hygiene;
(j) the safe working procedures regarding the use, handling, processing, and storage of any material containing asbestos, which procedures include the correct use of control measures to limit the spread of asbestos dust outside the work area, and to limit the exposure of workers inside the work area as far as is reasonably practicable;
(k) procedures to be followed in the event of an accidental spillage or any other similar emergency situation likely to result in the release of asbestos dust;
(l) procedures for reporting and correcting defects likely to result in the release of asbestos dust;
(m) safe disposal of asbestos waste;
(n) procedures for record keeping; and
(o) matters contemplated in regulation 6.


(2) Refresher training on matters contemplated in subregulation (1) shall be given at least every year or at more frequent intervals that may be recommended by the health and safety committee.


(3) Training should be given more frequently than once a year if –
(a) work methods change;
(b) type of work carried out changes significantly; or
(c) the type of equipment used to control exposure changes.


(4) Training shall be provided by somebody who is competent to provide it and has adequate personal practical experience and theoretical knowledge of all aspects of the work being carried out by the employer.


(5) An employer or a self-employed person shall ensure, as far as is reasonably practicable, that his or her mandatory or any person other than employees who may be exposed to asbestos at the workplace are given adequate information, instruction and training.


(6) An employer shall keep a record of any training, both practical and theoretical, that was given to an employee.


(7) An employer or a self-employed person shall give instructions in writing of the procedures contemplated in subregulation (1 )(k) to the drivers of vehicles carrying asbestos or asbestos-containing material, that has the potential of causing environmental pollution or affecting human health.