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Asbestos discovered in Turangi Transfer Station concrete pile

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

The discovery of asbestos in a concrete pile at Turangi Transfer Station has prompted calls for people to be mindful of what they are disposing and to follow proper procedures.

The asbestos was discovered mid last week by a contractor crushing concrete on the site. It had been disposed of incorrectly as only approved facilities can accept asbestos debris.

Acting chief executive Brian Fox said as soon as the asbestos was discovered the contractor notified the council and the affected areas were cordoned off to the public. Water was used to wet down the crushed material to reduce the risk of particles becoming airborne. Work Safe New Zealand was notified and an asbestos expert was commissioned to undertake testing.

"The test results confirmed there was asbestos in the uncrushed concrete pile, the crushed concrete pile and in the soil around where the piles are, and where the loader and excavator were operating," said Mr Fox.

"We are now working through the options to decontaminate the site and reopen the affected areas," he said. "We are confident we have done all we can to minimise any risk of harm to the public." The contractor had been offered a precautionary health check.

"We really need people to be mindful of what they are dumping and if it contains asbestos there is a procedure to follow," said Mr Fox. "We will be undertaking an education campaign with the community to help better inform people because incidents like this can be costly," he said. "If in doubt, ask."

The transfer station remains open to the community.

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