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Asbestos answers

Posted: 23 March 2016

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Anyone removing 15m of non-friable asbestos containing material will need an asbestos removal licence from April next year. True or false?


If 10m or less of ACM is removed over the course of the whole project, this doesn’t require a licence. Greater than 10m will require a licence.

Which class of asbestos removal presents the greater risk, Class A (friable) or B (non-friable)?

Class A (friable).

Friable asbestos is powdery or has the potential to become powdery and be released into the air. Once breathed in such fibres may pass deep into the lungs, or, if swallowed, into the digestive tract. Once they are trapped in the body, the fibers can cause health problems.

The new asbestos removal licences will be held by each individual person. True or false?


A Person Controlling a Business or Undertaking (PCBU) will apply for and hold the new licence. A self-employed individual can be a PCBU. 

If a Person Conducting a Business or Undertaking (PCBU) applies for a Class B licence (to remove non-friable asbestos or ACM) on 4 April, it has six months to satisfy WorkSafe that its supervisors are competent. True or false?  

True, but the PCBU must have completed their application for a Class B licence to get the extra time.

Only a licenced assessor may provide a clearance inspection for Class A removal work. True or false?


A ‘competent person’ may provide clearance for Class A removal work during the two-year transitional period starting from 4 April 2016. From April 2018 a licenced assessor must be used.

This information is published by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Chief Executive. It is a general guide only and, if used, does not relieve any person of the obligation to consider any matter to which the information relates according to the circumstances of the particular case. Expert advice may be required in specific circumstances. Where this information relates to assisting people: