The basics of an Asbestos Register

The basics of an Asbestos Register

In this post, we’ll explain the basics of an Asbestos Register:

  • What it is;
  • What it looks like; and
  • How it works


If you saw this video you’ll know that as the person responsible for Workplace Health  & Safety you have a number of responsibilities, even more so if Asbestos Management comes into the mix.

As the regulation states “A person with management or control of a workplace must ensure an asbestos register is prepared and kept at the workplace. The asbestos register must be maintained, to ensure the information in the register is up-to-date.”

There are some circumstances when it’s not needed though.

“An asbestos register is not required to be prepared when:
–  the workplace is a building that was constructed after 31 December 1989, and
– no asbestos has been identified at the workplace, and
– no asbestos is likely to be present at the workplace from time to time”

It’s important to note that the regulation says ‘and’ not ‘or’, meaning you can only avoid the need for a register if you meet all 3 of those criteria.

So let’s assume you’re in the majority and you do need a register. “The asbestos register is a document that lists all identified (or assumed) asbestos in a workplace.”

There’s certain information it should contain and a particular way to display that information. This includes but is not limited to:

– details of any asbestos assumed to be in the workplace;

– results of any analysis that confirms a material at the workplace is or is not asbestos;

– dates when the identification was carried out; and

– details of inaccessible areas.

It may also be useful to attach photographs or drawings to visually show the location of the asbestos or ACM in the workplace.

If an asbestos register already exists at the workplace there is no legal requirement to create another one. The existing register can be reviewed and revised. This should be quite simple if you only have a few assets in the same geographic area to look after, but if you manage a large number of distributed assets you still need to ensure each register is accurate, current and accessible to employees, contractors and site visitors.

Here’s a standard template provided by Work Safe Queensland. This may vary depending on your state, territory or country.

Feature photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash