Central Coast Council is reminding residents of the risks associated with not disposing of asbestos waste responsibly after an amount of asbestos waste was found in a green waste bin earlier this week.

The contaminated green waste bin was collected by Council’s waste contractor, Cleanaway, and as a result of incorrect disposal, this has contaminated the materials in the truck, as well as exposed asbestos to staff compromising their health and safety.

Council Acting Senior Manager Business and Economic Development, Andrew Pearce, reminded residents to follow the proper protocol when disposing of asbestos.

“Asbestos can be disposed of at Council’s Buttonderry and Woy Woy Waste Management Facilities by residents for a cost providing strict guidelines are followed and it is less than 10 metres square,” Mr Pearce said.

“This includes notification being provided 24 hours in advance and asbestos must be wrapped in manageable bundles with two layers of plastic with a thickness of at least 0.2mm (builder’s plastic) and sealed using adhesive packaging tape.

Transportation of  more than 10m2/100kg of asbestos waste (friable and/or bonded) is required by law to be tracked via the WasteLocate app and can only be undertaken by a licenced asbestos removalist, unless in an emergency situation.

Council Director Environment and Planning, Scott Cox, reminded residents that asbestos may be present in one out of every three Australian homes.

“Asbestos is very common in homes built or renovated before 1987, found behind walls, ceiling, around hot water pipes, fences and more,” Mr Cox said.

“If you do not know how to identify or correctly and safely manage the disposal of asbestos it is best to leave renovations to the experts.”

“If you have concerns about removing or storing asbestos, or believe asbestos is posing a risk to the community, contact Council so the matter can be investigated by one of our Environmental Health Officers.”

If well maintained and left undisturbed asbestos is unlikely to pose a health risk. Renovators should visit asbestosawareness.com.au for user-friendly information including the Asbestos in Your Home – The Ultimate Renovators Guide video and the 20 Point Safety Check.

If caught dumping asbestos fines of up to $7,500 per person or $15,000 for an organisation can be issued by the NSW EPA.

Visit centralcoast.nsw.gov.au/asbestos for more information on how to safely dispose of asbestos.