What is asbestos?

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral found in the surface of the earth. It contains strong fibres that have excellent durability, fire resistance and insulating properties. Asbestos fibres are 50 to 200 times thinner than a human hair, can float in the air for a long time, can be invisible to the naked eye and can be breathed into the lungs.

In the past, asbestos was mined from the ground and manufactured into many different materials. Materials containing asbestos were very common in the Australian residential building industry between the 1940s and late 1980s before their production stopped.

The use of all forms of asbestos has been banned nationally since 31 December 2003. The ban does not apply to asbestos installed prior to this date (eg. asbestos materials in houses).

Asbestos needs to be disposed of at Council’s Kirknie Landfill and should be removed and transported by a specialist asbestos waste removalist. The Queensland Health¬†web site provides information for home owners, renovators and owner builders on asbestos in the home.

It provides information on what asbestos is, the health risks of asbestos, what it looks like and where you could find it and how to work with asbestos safely.

Alternatively, you can download a free information booklet from this site as a handy reference to use during your project.

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