What is the difference between licenced and non-licenced asbestos removal?

Throughout our recent blogs, we have covered the risks around asbestos exposure and containing or removing hazardous materials. We have chosen this blog to discuss the risk associated with the type of asbestos present in your work site and the different types of asbestos removal.

Asbestos is divided into 4 separate risk categories – High risk, medium-risk, low-risk and very low-risk. How the asbestos-containing materials are classed within these categories comes from the initial asbestos survey and asbestos testing conducted.

Depending on the determined level of risk, a licenced or non-licenced removal of the asbestos may be required. Let’s take a further look into the distinctions.


Low to very-low risk ACMs fall within areas such as asbestos floor coverings (such as tiles), smaller scale asbestos textured coatings and asbestos cement that is in good condition. These are the typical areas of the low to very-low scale, and that can also include paints and other items with smaller traces not likely to exceed the concern level.

The medium to high-risk ACMs is the areas around spray coatings, thermal insulation, and asbestos insulating boards (AIB). This can also include loose-fill asbestos and other areas that have higher traces of the material that can become highly dangerous when damaged or disturbed.

Naturally, in both instances there comes certain levels of care to ensure you and anyone working or living within the vicinity are safe from exposure.

Non-licenced asbestos works

Non-licenced asbestos removal requires a fully trained staff that is insured to undertake work on asbestos and has a hazardous waste carriers licence. This follows full asbestos surveying of the required areas and medical and face fit testing.

The paperwork required for non-licenced removal must have a risk assessment and method statement, a statement of cleanliness, a hazardous waste consignment note and an update of the asbestos management plan.

Equipment required for this removal must be full PPE, segregation from others on site and the use of fibre suppression and H-Vac. This process is used for the removal of the listed non-licenced areas, which can include garage roofs, flooring, roofing felt and corrugated sheeting.

Licenced asbestos works

Licenced asbestos removal Manchester includes the requirement of a fully trained staff with an asbestos licence from the HSE. They must be insured to undertake licenced works, be accredited, and vetted and compile an asbestos assessment of the required areas.

Licenced asbestos removal contractors (LARCs) will have to complete both a risk assessment and method statement with their completion paperwork, along with a hazardous waste consignment note, 4-stage clearance with air monitoring and an ASB5 notification to the HSE.

Licenced asbestos removal also requires the equipment and procedures that non-licenced would utilise, but with extra elements such as a decontamination unit, negative pressure units and, in some instances, injection equipment.

The high-risk areas such as spray coatings, thermal insulation and insulating boards and loose fill materials carry a much more hazardous level of material and should never be attempted with just the non-licenced requirements.

Cost difference

Non-licenced work costs less than licenced asbestos removal, simply because the risk is lower, the level of equipment maintenance and insurance costs are lower and legislation is also less strict due to the lower risk. Licenced asbestos removal has more elements of care in safety requirements, associated paperwork and checks and increased insurance costs – which all raise the level of expense.

Contact the team at Grosvenor Asbestos Solutions today for an asbestos removal company that helps you understand the different types of asbestos removal Stockport and to provide alternative solutions to your asbestos projects.

What our clients have to say…

“Jim provided a fantastic service. Friendly, quick, non-disruptive work. Good turnaround on receiving the sample report too”

“Asbestos survey – Jim did a very thorough job. Kept us updated right through the visit with an initial view, and then supplied an in depth report after. Very pleasant person to deal with. Overall, very pleased with the service.”

“Really friendly professional service with very quick response time. The work was carried out to a high standard, at a very good price, within two days of enquiry. I would definitely recommend this company.”

“Jordan and Jim did an excellent job of demolishing our garage, including the safe removal of the asbestos roof. Their work was tidy and controlled, with no impact on any surrounding hedges, plants, etc.

All in all they ticked every box.”

“Jim and his team were very professional, courteous and helpful throughout the whole process. They worked very hard to meet our tight timelines and did a great job. I would highly recommend Grosvenor Asbestos to anyone requiring asbestos services.”

“Had a survey done. All work and results back before a new week. Very prompt, efficient and quick service. Absolutely recommend this company.”

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