A s be s to s fear s
Residents are angry asbestos at an Housing New Zealand development in St Lukes took several days to be removed.
Anthony Honore, who lives near the site between St Lukes and New North roads, alerted the council on August 23 after seeing dumped fibreboard onsite.
But it wasn’t disposed of until Labour Department investigators tested the board almost a week later.
That’s despite an Auckland City Council offi cer telling site contractors of the danger.
Mr Honore says the length of time to clear the matter up isn’t good enough.
“I think it’s pretty shoddy. It only takes one asbestos fi bre to get into your lungs and that’s it,” he says.
He is concerned when excavation of the site begins properly, asbestos could be released into the air.
“It’s been left to get overgrown for many years and has become a de facto dumping ground.
“ It could just be the tip of the iceberg.”
Council resource consent monitoring offi cer Parvati Prema received Mr Honore’s message about the fi - breboard on August 25 and told contractor Kalmar Construction’s project manager of the problem.
After being contacted by the Central Leader on August 26, Housing New Zealand acting regional manager Wahid Ahmed also asked principal contractors Saltburn Group to investigate.
In turn the Saltburn Group contacted their subcontractors Kalmar Construction and asked them to look into the matter.
The fi breboard was looked at and deemed to pose no danger because it was damp and intact, Mr Ahmed says.
Labour Department inspectors called in on August 28 identifi ed it was likely a small amount of asbestos was contained in two pieces of fi breboard.
Experts disposed of the material the following day after tests confi rmed asbestos was present.
St Lukes residents group spokesman Tony Mayes says the discovery
o f asbestos is a concern because children have used the site as a play area in the past.
Mr Ahmed says Housing New Zealand has reiterated to Saltburn Group that their asbestos policy, which lists safety as a priority, needs to be “strictly adhered to”.