Following a request from Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA), the Metropolitan Fire Brigade (MFB) has today dampened the site where the Corkman pub was illegally demolished.
EPA Metro Manager Daniel Hunt said the site was dampened by the MFB this morning following EPA testing which confirmed that asbestos was present in the waste at the site.
“While advice we have received to date suggests the risk to the community from asbestos is very low, as a precautionary measure, and because of the windy conditions forecast today, EPA asked MFB to water the site to limit any dust leaving its boundary,” Mr Hunt said.
As a further precaution WorkSafe has ordered air monitoring to begin at the site.
Mr Hunt said the company that owned the site had been issued with a notice to hold them to account for the waste and to prevent any asbestos from leaving the site, but those who owned the company were yet to be located.
He said the notice required the owner of the site to prevent any asbestos leaving the site and to prevent any discharge beyond its boundary.
“The notice says that by this Friday the site owners must install adequate signage, in public view, around the perimeter, identifying that the premises is contaminated with asbestos. By next Monday 24 October the site owners must have installed appropriate measures to cover the debris so that no asbestos can leave the site,” Mr Hunt said.
“The illegal dumping of construction and demolition waste is a serious issue and EPA is continuing its attempts to inform the site owners of the penalties that can apply. Anyone who dumps construction and demolition waste – or permits its illegal disposal – faces a fine of more than $7,500 or up to $758,350 if prosecuted.”
Under the Environment Protection Act 1970, construction and demolition waste must only be disposed of at facilities licensed or permitted to accept it.
Additional requirements of the notice served by EPA to the site include:
- The site owners must install controls to prevent any sediment from the premises discharging and contaminating the stormwater system.
- They must also engage a suitably qualified asbestos consultant to assess the premises and produce an asbestos management plan.
- The asbestos management plan will need to detail both the on-site management and the safe removal of the asbestos. EPA will require the asbestos to be removed once the management plan is developed.