ASBESTOS DISCOVERED IN SEVEN MELBOURNE PARKS

Asbestos has now been identified in mulch at seven Melbourne parks. Following Hobsons Bay Council confirming the presence of asbestos at Donald McLean Reserve in Spotswood, the EPA have inspected six more sites resulting in confirmed traces of asbestos. This follows the identification of asbestos-contaminated mulch at 75 sites in NSW, including seven schools.

The EPA first confirmed the presence of asbestos in a park in PA Burns Reserve in Altona. The park, opened in April last year as part of the West Gate Tunnel Project, is now undergoing an asbestos contamination investigation led by the council. The investigation commenced after a concerned father reported suspicious materials which included wood with nails, concrete chunks, raising safety concerns, especially for children playing in the area.

Since then, the EPA also found traces of asbestos in GJ Hosken Reserve and Crofts Reserve in Altona North; and located asbestos at Dennis Reserve in Williamstown, Fitzgerald Square Reserve in Sunshine West and Shores Reserve in Pascoe Vale South. Given the trajectory of discoveries, it is likely that this number will only grow.

SafetyNet wrote to EPA Victoria after the reporting on NSW contaminations earlier this year. We wanted to know if similar situations could be occurring in Victoria and if so, what actions are being taken to address the issue. EPA Victoria responded:

‘Victorian composting or mulching facilities are not permitted to take material containing asbestos. We have controls in place to ensure that mulch meets the required standards.

It seems those controls may be inadequate. 

 

Source: Asbestos confirmed in seven Melbourne parks after latest tests | Melbourne | The Guardian

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