Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) has fined 40-52 McArthurs Road Development P/L nearly $8000 for dumping and stockpiling soil containing asbestos at its site in Altona North.
EPA Metro Manager Peter Kerr said EPA officers observed a truck dumping what was believed to be contaminated soil while responding to a pollution report from a member of the public.
“This is a good example of the importance of the local community being our eyes and ears. EPA really values this local intelligence. It is vital in helping us to prevent and respond to harm,” Mr Kerr said.
“Both a nearby school and the local council were immediately notified about the contaminated soil and it was covered by the company within six hours of EPA officers arriving on site.”
Mr Kerr said hundreds of tonnes of soil was dumped at the site, in stockpiles ranging in size from 10 cubic metres to an estimated 420 cubic metres.
“EPA officers collected samples of material thought to be asbestos fragments found amongst the soil, and analytical results showed the samples contained asbestos fibres,” Mr Kerr said.
Along with a fine of $7773, EPA issued the company with a notice requiring it to conduct air monitoring and submit an asbestos management plan for the site which included the safe removal of the soil that was dumped on the premises.
“Air monitoring showed results that were within occupational health and safety guidelines,” Mr Kerr said.
A later inspection confirmed the company had removed the soil and complied with the legally enforceable instructions of the notice.
“The fine is a reminder to all companies to be aware of their environmental obligations and to ensure waste is correctly classified disposed of legally to a facility licensed to receive it,” Mr Kerr said.
Members of the public can report pollution of the environment to the 24-hour EPA pollution hotline, by calling 1300 372 842 (1300 EPA VIC). There’s more information at www.epa.vic.gov.au/get-involved/report-pollution