After the discovery of hazardous asbestos material over the weekend, work is now being carried out by a licensed contractor for the asbestos removal on Prestwick Beach in Ayrshire, Scotland.
The beach had been closed to the public over the weekend following concerns about asbestos contamination.
The council have announced that the beach will remain closed while the asbestos removal work takes place.
As a precaution, checks for asbestos have also been carried out at beaches in Ayr, Barassie, Newton and Troon. The results have come back negative for asbestos.
South Ayrshire Council say they are working very closely with Sepa (the Scottish Environment Protection Agency) and NHS Ayrshire and Arran, along with specialist advisors, in order to deal with the asbestos problem and are considering all possible scenarios and putting an action plan into place.
The council are also liaising with Prestwick St Nicholas Golf Club as they own and manage sections of Prestwick beach that are opposite the golf course.
Investigations being carried out
Head of neighbourhood services, Mike Newall, said: “Our contractor will begin the sweep of the beach on Tuesday morning to identify and remove any materials potentially of concern.”
“While that work is ongoing – and until we are more informed about the potential impact of the materials found – the beach closure will remain in place and we will continue to monitor and review this on an ongoing basis.”
Mr Newall also stated: “We are actively investigating the source of this material in conjunction with our specialist contractor.”
“While investigations are in progress and until a full scientific risk assessment can be carried out, the beach has been closed as a precaution. We ask locals and visitors alike to follow the warning signs and stay off the beach for the time being.”
Consultant in public health medicine for NHS Ayrshire and Arran, Dr Elvira Garcia said, “Until we know more about the material on Prestwick Beach, and any potential impact on public health, the precautionary beach closure will minimise the likelihood of exposure.”
The asbestos removal on Prestwick beach is likely to take a while.
Duty holders and employers have a legal responsibility to manage asbestos in their building so as not to put employees at risk. Contact our Armco office for asbestos management and refurbishment/ demolition surveys on 0161 763 3727 or by visiting http://www.armco.org.uk/. Alternatively call 0161 761 4424 or visit http://www.armcoasbestostraining.co.uk/ for enquiries or to book a training course.