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Will Asbestos alert effect skip bin operators

News > Will Asbestos alert effect skip bin operators


Danger Asbestos Will RobinsonWe have taken a leaf out the media's files.  The headline crys out "Households unaware of asbestos alert" SMH Oct 28 2012.  So why let reality get in the way of a good story?   The article was triggered by Endeavour Energy, which serves Sydney's west, Blue Mountains and the Illawarra area with electricity issuing an alert to its staff about about the potential hazards to be found when working in and around meter boards installed before 1988 in meter housings at contain asbestos.  The asbestos can become deadly once disturbed by drilling associated with the installation of modern meters and solar energy equipment.

 Skip hire operators are probably at no more risk than they were last week but it is nice to know that the media have got a careful watch for potential new risks to our health, or was that, the potential new stories to wind people up?

It is interesting to see how the story aims to stir.  Not to be out done by the employer, the The Electrical Trades Union responded by ordering its members not to work on or near potentially hazardous boards within asbestos housings.  We especially like the wording "ordered".  Do they get to order their members about or is it meant to be the other way around?

Last, but hopefully not least a spokesman for the NSW Health Minister, Jillian Skinner was asked for a comment and she said she had not been notified, and neither did she  make any comment about the health risk for operatives at asbestos skip bin companies either. 

As usual the workers at the real front line, on the asbestos skip bins, they do not seem to get any attention ever though they are a group of workers most under threat having to deal with asbestos skip bins day in, day out. So remember if you are looking to dispose of asbestos in a skip bin; dampen the asbestos down before you start work to minimise dust and then make sure the asbestos is well wrapped in double layers of 200 micron thick (builders plastic) and seal it with duct tape if you are disposing asbestos in a skip bin. In that way no fibres can be blown out of the asbestos skip bin on to you, the driver or your neighbours.

Please take care when disposing of asbestos.  Dispose of the asbestos properly by sending it to an authorised landfill site where it will be buried in a safe area.  Avoid burying it at home as it is likely to be even more expensive in the long term.  Get a asbestos skip bin and dispose of the asbestos properly.
  • Authored By:Steve Shergold
  • Published:28/10/2012