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Westminster Safety Disagreement Highlights Risk in Schools
Date:3/25/2009

LONDON, March 25 /PRNewswire/ -- Clinica - the world's leading medical technology journal - is calling for a public inquiry into the state of asbestos regulation in the UK, in light of discrepancies over the risk of exposure to asbestos at London's Palace of Westminster.

On the day of a parliamentary debate on the presence of asbestos in schools, the latest developments in Clinica's investigation into the extent of the problem and the ensuing healthcare need, add weight to calls for a more precautionary approach and greater readiness, including the creation of a national asbestos-related diseases research centre.

Clinica has obtained a report that updates and expands on allegations reported in June 2008. The report, produced for the Parliamentary Works Services Directorate by Goddard Consulting (an established asbestos safety consultant for the Palace authorities), dated January 23 2009, alleges that a series of recommendations have not been acted upon in relation to known and unknown levels of risk of exposure to asbestos in many parts of the Palace.

Prefacing the report with the warning that "the presence of asbestos has not been managed in accordance with the various regulations", the 112-page document summarises the location of known asbestos contamination; lists the "apparent breaches" to the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2002 and 2006, in the face of previous recommendations; and provides new recommendations based on the current situation. It also collates some 80 pages of survey reports and correspondence related to asbestos safety concerns, dating back to 2005.

In the light of the reassurances given to Clinica by both the Parliamentary Works Services Directorate (PWSD) and the Health and Safety Executive (responsible for regulating asbestos safety in the UK) since June 2008, the HSE was asked yesterday to confirm its position on asbestos safety at the Palace.

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SOURCE Clinica
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