Asbestos cement products are not a significant health risk if they are in a stable condition and remain undisturbed. Roofing that is weathered, structurally unsound or no longer waterproof should be replaced. You should never walk on an asbestos cement roof as they are brittle and people have died or suffered injury after falling through. Engage a licensed asbestos removalist.
Before purchase, have the house assessed by a qualified occupational hygienist or other professional qualified for the job. Asbestos products are found in many houses built or renovated before the mid-1980s.
Not necessarily. Products containing any percentage of asbestos should be regarded as potentially dangerous if disturbed. Trust only a licensed asbestos removalist to get rid of such material.
Absolutely not. Such action is a health risk and illegal. Asbestos removed from your house can only go to an establishment that is lawfully able receive asbestos waste.
For the location of waste facilities nearby get in touch with your local council. You can also get information about safely transporting and dumping asbestos waste by phoning The Environment Protection Authority on 13 15 55 or visiting their website.
If your home was built or renovated before the mid-1980s, products with asbestos were often used in wet areas such as laundries, kitchens and bathrooms. Don’t risk it: have the material tested and/or removed by a professional.
It is essential that you hire a licensed asbestos removalist if there is more than 10 square metres of fibro. If there is less than 10 metres, however, visit the Workcover website for a guide to removing asbestos.
Check the Yellow Pages or contact the Asbestos Removal Contractors Association and ask them for a copy of the removalist’s licence. Or you can call WorkCover on 13 10 50 to check the licence and request their fact sheet on how to choose an asbestos consultant.
Safe management of asbestos in your home:
Complaints about unsafe work at a residential property:
You don’t need a licence if less than 10 square metres of bonded (non-friable) asbestos material is going to be removed. However, over 10 square metres must be removed by a licensed and trained person, and any amount of friable asbestos can only be removed legally by a suitable qualified licenced person.
Yes. The current exposure standard for asbestos is 0.1 fibre/ml for Amosite and Crocidolite, or for mixtures that have more than one asbestos type. However, any degree of exposure to asbestos fibres is best avoided.
A class P1 or P2 disposable respirator, plus disposable coveralls, is required for any person working on an asbestos removal task.
Yes, but these tools must be a non-mains powered or portable power tool that can collect asbestos fibres using dust suppression or dust extraction attachments.
It’s about risk management, and some asbestos-containing products are known to have a long and stable lifespan. Material that has a low risk of disturbance and is in good condition requires a less frequent review than the code of practice’s recommended 12 months. However, this reduction in review must be backed by a written recommendation of a competent person, and adequate systems must exist in workplace for the reporting of any damage or work involving the material. The maximum time allowed between reviews is three years.
Any workplace, including schools, where asbestos is present must have an asbestos register. For schools, appropriate signage includes: