Materials containing asbestos were extensively used in the construction industry up until 1986.
When these materials are removed or disturbed by activities such as cutting, drilling, water blasting, the asbestos fibres released are harmful when inhaled and can cause asbestosis, mesothelioma and lung cancer.
Next week is National Asbestos Awareness Week and Council is urging everyone to be asbestos aware when commencing renovations.
National Asbestos Awareness Week marks 20 years since the use of asbestos-containing materials were completely banned in Australia.
Asbestos is still lurking in millions of homes and structures including doors, electrical boards, vinyl sheeting, walls and roofs.
Asbestos fibres can be easily disturbed when doing renovations, home improvements and building maintenance, so there is an ongoing need to remain vigilant to prevent exposure to asbestos fibres and a need to focus on safe, proactive removal.
Council has an important role in helping inform the community about minimising exposure to asbestos as far as is reasonably practicable, and to manage any materials found on public land.
Asbestos materials found to be illegally dumped on Council land accessible to the public is investigated by Council’s Compliance team or removed by Council’s Cleansing team.
Council investigates matters relating to derelict properties, general asbestos safety, illegal dumping and unsafe building work at residential properties being carried out by homeowners or tenants.
Enquiries about asbestos containing materials can be directed to Council on 1300 434 430.
All workplace-related complaints should be referred to Safe Work NSW.
For more information visit www.asbestos.nsw.gov.au