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Asbestos Removal

Asbestos Products

Asbestos is a minute mineral fibre which is known to cause severe health conditions when inhaled. The fibre was used in many products in the mid-19th century until the 1990s. The most common sources of asbestos fibres within the Hawkesbury today are the following.

  • Fibrous cement sheeting or “fibro”. Particularly fibro installed in homes between 1940 and 1980.
  • Moulding and trim profiles used to join or terminate sheeting. Predominantly used on fibro houses and structures.
  • Irrigation pipes used on farms and areas where these were installed and stored.
  • Gutters and down-pipes. Predominantly used on fibro houses and structures.
  • Corrugated roof sheeting. This is usually damaged by weather and can release fibres.
  • Old linoleum flooring (lino). Some are still in use and others lie beneath old carpet.
  • Glues used to fix lino. Bituminous coating used to apply to concrete. Commonly found on doorsteps.
  • Insulative lagging used for heat insulation or pipes, flues, and heating or furnace apparatus, and fire proofing of buildings.
  • Loose-fill roof insulation such as Mr Fluffy insulation. This is thought to be rare in our area.
  • Legacy fibres from previous land uses. For example, automotive and locomotive brake linings and gaskets.

NOTE that most buildings in the area will contain asbestos products such as the sheeting used in kitchens and bathrooms of a house, eaves, and electrical switchboards.

Bonded asbestos containing materials are considered low risk if they are sealed, undisturbed and in good condition. They can however, pose a potential and serious health when disturbed, damaged or weathered. To avoid any potential health hazards, it is critical all asbestos containing material is properly handled, removed and disposed of.

All homeowners should seek accurate information and advice prior to commencing any home maintenance or renovation.

Removal

Asbestos products are normally removed by contractors, and therefore the sites where removal is being undertaken are regulated by NSW SafeWork.

If you discover or suspect you have found asbestos containing materials in your home contact Council on (02) 4560 4444 for further advice and consider engaging a licenced professional to test the material. Most importantly, if you think it might be asbestos, treat it like it is.

As dictated by law, a licensed asbestos removal contractor must be contacted for the removal of:

  • All friable asbestos
  • More than ten (10) metres of bonded asbestos (about the size of a small bathroom)
  • If bonded asbestos is damaged or weathered

Asbestos products are normally bonded and are quite safe in situ until they are disturbed, broken, cracked, or cut. Owners and occupiers that are undertaking asbestos removal work by themselves are not commercially removing asbestos. From 1 January 2008 a bonded asbestos licence is required for the removal of more than 10 square Metres of bonded asbestos. Note that the requirements are applicable to bonded asbestos sheeting only. If the material is significantly damaged from weather, or impact; the material is likely to be friable, and will also require a licensed removalist, regardless of quantity.

Disposal

All asbestos containing materials must be disposed of at a licensed facility. Please note Asbestos is NOT accepted at the Hawkesbury City Waste Management Facility.

To find a facility that accepts household asbestos, please visit the NSW EPA’s website .

Always contact the facility or local Council beforehand to confirm whether they accept household asbestos, what their requirements are for packaging and delivering the asbestos and whether you must book prior, as many facilities will require a booking request at least twenty-four (24) hours in advance.

Important Information and Links

  • Asbestos Awareness website - created by the Asbestos Education Committee, this website provides a comprehensive guide on all aspects of asbestos for home renovators and tradesman

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