Asbestos awareness training fact sheet
Asbestos awareness training gives workers and supervisors the knowledge they need to identify and work safely with asbestos or asbestos containing material.
The purpose of awareness training is to ensure workers understand where asbestos might be found and what steps to take to stay safe.
Training should provide information on:
- identification, safe handling and appropriate control measures
- asbestos containing materials (ACMs)
- naturally occurring asbestos
- loose fill asbestos (raw asbestos crushed into a fine state and installed as insulation).
If you are an employer or business (or other PCBU), you are responsible for
- giving workers appropriate information and instruction about the risks and controls necessary to do their work safely.
- determining the right training for each worker.
You need formal training and a WorkCover licence if you carry out friable and non-friable asbestos removal.
Who needs awareness training?
Asbestos awareness training is mandatory for anyone whose normal work duties present a reasonable likelihood of disturbing or coming into contact with asbestos.
- workers who enter ceiling cavities (such as insulation installers; pest spray operators; air-conditioning installers; maintenance and repair workers; solar panel providers)
- electricians; plumbers; carpenters and joiners; plasterers; painters and decorators; gas fitters; demolition workers; floor finishers
- emergency services workers
- building and construction workers.
Types of training available
Workers and supervisors can complete asbestos awareness training in a number of ways:
- formal, vocational training
- informal training
Training can be general or industry specific.
This includes completing a nationally recognised unit of competency or an accredited course delivered by a Registered Training Organisation (RTO).
- 10314NAT Course in asbestos awareness (nationally accredited course)
- 10559NAT - Course in Working Safely with Asbestos Containing Materials
- CPCCPD3031A - Implement safe lead paint and asbestos work practices in the painting industry
- any course that would entitle a person to supervise or remove bonded asbestos under a licence or registration in an Australian jurisdiction.
For details on formal courses delivered by the vocational education and training sector please refer to training.gov.au.
This includes non-accredited courses and in-house training programs.
Training can be face- to-face or delivered online and may include classroom or practical, on-site elements. You may find larger companies offer this training in-house.
Asbestos awareness training can also be delivered as general or industry specific information. For example, Implementing safe lead paint and asbestos work practices in the painting industry is an industry specific course. PCBUs should discuss industry appropriate training requirements with their preferred training provider.
You should seek expert training and advice from an occupational hygienist or a licensed asbestos assessor before any works start if loose fill asbestos insulation is likely to be found in the workplace.
The employer or business (or other PCBU) is required to keep a record of a worker’s training while they are carrying out work and for five years after the day the worker ceases work.
Workers do not need an asbestos awareness training card.
Codes of practice:
- How to manage and control asbestos in the workplace
- How to safely remove asbestos: Code of practice.
A PDF of this information is also available for download.
Catalogue No. WC01739 WorkCover NSW 0615