Resident claims asbestos illegally dumped only tended to 10 days after it was reported to Geraldton council
A Geraldton resident has expressed concern after waiting more than a week for dumped asbestos to be removed from a popular community space.
The resident, who wishes to remain anonymous, stumbled upon a pile of what he believes was illegally dumped asbestos on January 9 at the corner of Augustus and Francis streets - the verge of the Railways Football Club and children’s park.
After calling the City of Greater Geraldton to report the material he claims came in the form of Super 6 fencing, a type of compact asbestos, the resident was told it would be dealt with shortly.
However, the material went untouched for 10 days before it was covered with a sheet of plastic and surrounded with high-visibility cones the following Friday.
Get in front of tomorrow's news for FREE
Journalism for the curious Australian across politics, business, culture and opinion.READ NOW
“I used to do asbestos removal, and that just isn’t the standard,” the resident said.
“There should be a sign which says there is asbestos present, and it should be at least 600mm underground.
“There are plenty of people who do removal available so I don’t know why it took so long.”
City CEO Ross McKim said correct services were being sought to deal with the potential threat safely.
“The City’s waste services contractor is now awaiting a licensed asbestos contractor to assess if the material contains asbestos, clean the area, and dispose of the material correctly,” he said.
When disposing of asbestos at Meru Waste Management Facility, the substance must be double-wrapped in plastic and marked as asbestos.
Fines for dumping asbestos illegally - as the material in question is suspected to have been - can be up to $5000 for individuals and up to $25,000 for commercial businesses.
The resident who brought the suspect material to the City’s attention pointed out it had been discovered next to a park where children often play, potentially raising health risks.
“If they had called me and told me that, I would’ve dropped everything to go — there are kids around that area all the time,” he said.
Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.
Sign up for our emails