In May this year, Territory and Municipal Services (TAMS) discovered bonded asbestos (e.g. small pieces of fibro sheeting) across the lower western slopes of Mt Majura and Mt Ainslie within the Nature Reserves behind the suburbs of Hackett, Ainslie and Campbell. It appears that this contaminated building material may have been dumped in the reserve many years ago.
TAMS has since employed a contractor to clean up the majority of the contaminated material. In keeping with the Environment Protection Authority and ACT Health’s recommendations for this site, TAMS has also employed a consultant to develop a draft management plan for the area.
The majority of the reserve is open to the public, however, there are a few smaller sites (that are barriered off with red coloured webbing and clear signage) that require further remedial works. Contaminated material contains low levels of bonded asbestos and is classified as low risk. The remedial works at these smaller sites may include the removal of contaminated fill with machinery.
If members of the public see material that may contain asbestos (e.g. fibro sheeting) within urban open space or a nature reserve, they should notify Canberra Connect on 13 22 81. Canberra Connect will collect the relevant information and pass it onto the appropriate authority.
It is important members of the public do not handle any material that may appear to be asbestos, nor should they venture within the taped off areas. Parents should ensure children are kept clear of the taped off areas at all times.
Anyone wishing to obtain further health related information regarding asbestos should contact ACT Health on 6205 1700 from 9 am to 4:30 pm.