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Independent health and safety, environmental and risk management consultancy Airborne Environmental Consultants (AEC), has more than two decades’ experience in ensuring the safety of sites, staff and customers.

The organisation is a leading UK training provider offering world-class training services, leading the way for course delivery and providing the marketplace with qualified and competent employees. It offers a wide range of accredited open courses, e-learning courses across a broad range of specialisms and bespoke group training tailored to the requirements of individual business.

Last year, AEC launched two new ‘hybrid’ health and safety courses designed specifically for 16 to 24-year-old engineering trainees at the Enginuity Skills Awards. One of the new courses launched was ‘Asbestos Awareness for Young Engineers’. It was developed with the input of engineering companies from across the industry and is quality assured by end-point assessment organisation, EAL, through its EAL Approved service. The course is assessed with a multiple choice question paper and is jointly awarded by AEC and EAL.

The decision to partner with EAL was due to the awarding body’s size and reputation for providing the best start and continued professional development for new engineers. Debbie Clare, Commercial Director at AEC, explained: “AEC is a leader in asbestos safety and training and we work a lot with engineering companies so apprenticeships was an area we wanted to explore. Working with EAL was an obvious choice for us as it is a leading specialist in the engineering industry.”

She added: “At AEC, we understand the training process and the subject as they are our core specialisms. When we brought EAL on board, they helped by walking us through the process of creating the course structure, assessment process and designing the course to deliver to apprentices.”

Asbestos Awareness training is a legal requirement for any worker who may encounter asbestos during their work. ‘Asbestos Awareness for Young Engineers’ is different to normal asbestos awareness courses as it is a bespoke half-day course, contextualised for different engineering environments. The course is tailored to the engineering industry and the individual pathways which makes it suitable for young engineering apprentices, T Level students and existing engineers. AEC has confirmed that they will be investing in the second course following sales for this new asbestos awareness course.

According to Debbie, giving ‘Asbestos Awareness for Young Engineers’ the EAL stamp of approval is a great opportunity for AEC due to the number of apprentices working with EAL training providers each year. She said: “EAL approval opens a trusted market to us that we are not currently working in. Their approval reinforces that our course is a safe start course for apprentices, meaning that it is tailored to the industry and the apprentice.”

EAL’s Head of Product, Anna Fritz said: “I was quite shocked when I heard the stark statistics relating to work-related health risks and diseases, so I was delighted to support AEC in its quest to attain quality approval for its safety courses. Harmful substances are ever-present in our engineering environments, and we must do everything we can to help young apprentices spot the dangers.”

When summarising the support they received, Debbie said: “EAL worked well with us as a partner. They completely understood our core goals and agreed that this course would have a lot of appeal as a dedicated asbestos-related course. They helped us develop and mould the course to make it contextualised to suit a range of engineering occupations and expand on basic asbestos awareness courses. The team even visited our Hazard House, a unique asbestos house, which perfectly demonstrates the extent of their support, dedication and time investment.”

She concluded: “AEC is always looking to innovate and EAL recognised this. I would absolutely encourage other organisations looking to develop a training course to partner with EAL. Without EAL Approved we would not be in the position we are in now, offering a bespoke and tailored asbestos training course supported by a prominent specialist awarding organisation.

“Our current aim is to raise awareness of ‘Asbestos Awareness for Young Engineers’ to not only play our part in shaping the engineers of the future, but also to ensure their safety.”

To find out more about ‘Asbestos Awareness for Young Engineers’, please visit: https://aec.uk.net/aec-training/apprenticeships.php