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Revised guidance on managing and controlling asbestos

20 December 2013

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has revised guidance to help businesses understand how to work safely with asbestos.

The Approved Codes of Practice (ACOPs) L127 (The management of asbestos in non-domestic premises) and L143 (Work with materials containing asbestos) have been consolidated into one single revised ACOP – L143 Managing and working with asbestos.

L143 has been revised to make it easier for businesses and employers to understand and meet their legal obligations. It also reflects the changes introduced in The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 (CAR 2012) on the notification of non-licensed work with asbestos, and consequent arrangements for employee medical examinations and record keeping.

Highlighting the benefits of the change, Kären Clayton, Director of HSE’s Long Latency Health Risks Division, said: “The two ACOPs have been updated and brought together to help employers find the information they need quickly and easily and understand how to protect their workers from dangers of working with asbestos. The revised ACOP also provides better clarity on identifying  dutyholders for non-domestic premises and the things they must do to comply with the ‘duty to manage’ asbestos.

ACOPs L127 and L143 were among several identified for: review and revision; consolidation; or withdrawal, following a recommendation made by Professor Ragnar Löfstedt in his report ‘Reclaiming Health and Safety for All’.

The changes follow public consultation and HSE Board and ministerial approval.

The revised ACOP is available on the HSE website at:

Legal responsibilities to protect workers’ health and safety are not altered by any changes to ACOPs.


Notes to editors

  1. Professor Ragnar Löfstedt’s review of health and safety legislation is available on the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) website at
  2. An ACOP provides practical guidance on complying with the general duties of the Health and Safety at Work Act (HSWA) or the requirements of goal-setting regulations. ACOPs are not law but do have a special legal status; if the advice in ACOP material is followed in relevant circumstances dutyholders can be confident they are complying with the law. 
  3. The Health and Safety Executive is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. It aims to reduce work-related death, injury and ill health. It does so through research, information and advice; promoting training; new or revised regulations and codes of practice; and working with local authority partners by inspection, investigation and enforcement.


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