If you are a tradesman, you have got a potentially life-saving opportunity over the next few weeks and I am urging you to take it so you and your family do not suffer like mine.
To tackle ignorance about asbestos - Britain’s biggest industrial killer- the health and safety executive and the Asbestos Training Industry is offering free awareness courses in our region and online throughout November.
Asbestos is not an historical problem like many people think - it is estimated 500,000 non-domestic buildings alone still contain it. The most at risk of exposure now are those who disturb it as they go about their daily jobs sawing and drilling, such as the electricians, plumbers, joiners and other general maintenance workers.
My father was a maintenance engineer. He was diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease which killed him.
He was never offered training, so never knew the dangers or how to protect himself.
I am urging you to spend just a few hours in a classroom or in front of a computer, it literally could save your life.
To find out what courses are on and where to book on a first-come-first-serve basis, visit www.hse.gov.uk/asbestos/training-pledge.