From the Second World War to 1954 over 70,000 houses were built from asbestos in New South Wales alone, accounting for 52% of all houses built. In Australia as a whole, until the 1960s, at least 25% of all new housing was clad in asbestos cement. Asbestos products continued to be widely used in a range of building materials up until the mid to late 1980s. If a house was built during, or now renovated from, this period it would most likely contain some asbestos. Therefore before renovating, repairing and removing materials from a house built during this period it is very important to know how dangerous asbestos is and the precautions that you should take.
There are a number of websites that are very informative such as:
The asbestosawareness.com.au website describes why asbestos is dangerous, where it can be found in the home, how to remove it safely, how to deal with it and how to disposing of it.
For HOMEOWNERS there is:
- Where it is found - with fact sheets and checklists
- Interactive home - highlights where asbestos can be found in the home
- Home renovations, DIY & Asbestos
- Asbestos detection in your home
- Video: Asbestos in your home
The fact sheets and checklists include:
- Working with asbestos around the home
- Safe practices for homeowners repairing or removing small amounts of asbestos materials
- Safe practices for rural & regional homeowners & farmers repairing or removing small amounts of asbestos materials
- A Healthy House Checklist - A homeowner’s guide to identifying asbestos-containing material to manage it safely.
- Healthy House Checklist for Homeowners - Repairs Schedule
- Healthy House Checklist for Homeowners - Additional Items
- The searchable database on asbestos products.
For TRADESPEOPLE working on residential houses there is:
- Tradie 20 Point Safety Check
- FAQ for Tradies
- Tradies Fact Sheets & Checklists
- Affected Trades
- Asbestos in the Workplace
- Identifying Asbestos
- Safe Management on Worksites
- Tradie PPE Kits
Tradies checklists and fact sheets include:
- 20 point asbestos safety checklist for tradies working on residential properties
- A Tradie’s guide to safe practices in managing asbestos in residential properties
- Instruction Guide: Residential Asbestos Checklist for Tradies
- Total Property Checklist - To help determine if asbestos is likely to be present in a property.
- The Naturally Occurring Asbestos – Asbestos Management Plan
- Asbestos Management Plan – Site Specific Template
- Asbestos Management Plan – Property Risk Assessment Template
- Incident Procedures & Report Template
- Workers Training Requirements & Records Template
- RPE and PPE Factsheet
- Decontamination Factsheet
Think smart, think safe, think asbestosawareness.com.au. It’s not worth the risk!
Betty the ADRI House is the first of her kind in Australia and the world and is a community engagement and experiential awareness initiative of the Asbestos Education Committee in partnership with ADRI.
Betty is a purpose built mobile model home designed to demonstrate where asbestos might be found in and around any Australian home built or renovated before 1987. Her exterior resembles a typical fibro home but when opened up, she has extensive audio and visual information including a bathroom, kitchen, living room, shed/garage and dog house.
Betty’s mission is to educate all Australian about the dangers of asbestos so they think smart, think safe, think abestosawareness.com.au because it’s not worth the risk!
Her curators and chauffeurs, Geoff and Karen Wicks, are fully trained volunteers who enable Betty to educate the community as well as tend to her maintenance and upkeep. Geoff is a retired avionics engineer and avid DIYer!
Karen and Geoff were recently recognised at the Safework NSW Awards 2017 for their tireless work, contribution and support over the past five years to the Asbestos Awareness Campaign.
Blue Lamington Drive
A vital part of raising awareness of asbestos among communities is creating a forum for discussion. As part of the Asbestos Awareness Month (1-30 November) the Asbestos Awareness Campaign invites all Australians to hold a Blue Lamington Drive.
The Blue Lamington’s bearing a colour similar to natural asbestos fibres are intended to raise awareness of the dangers of asbestos and to generate vital funds for ADRI and support grounds around Australia.
Anyone can hold a Blue Lamington Drive at home, at work or at school. It is a fun and easy way to help raise awareness of the dangers of asbestos among colleagues, family, friends, neighbours, schools and the wider community.
Donations will support vital research into asbestos-related diseases including mesothelioma.
For more information or to register visit www.bluelamington.com