Australian Homes with asbestos

It is estimated that one in three homes built in Australia before 1985 contain asbestos. Asbestos production peaked in Australia in the 1970s and prior to 1978 no warning was placed on products that contained asbestos.

The Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency (ASEA), the national government body overseeing asbestos issues in Australia, have done surveys with home owners and tenants about asbestos in the home. The results have improved in the 2018 survey but there is still national interest in learning more about identifying and the safe removal of asbestos in the home.

Some of the key findings of this 2018 research are:

  • More than 1 in 5 tradespeople indicated a desire for more training on asbestos and its related dangers
  • Females, people aged 18-39, those renting their property and those who speak a language other than English were all observed to have significantly lower levels of feeling informed than other groups, as were DIY home renovators based in both Melbourne and Adelaide.
  • 59% consider importance of being knowledgeable about asbestos and its related dangers to be ‘very important’ (up from 52% in 2016 and 43% in 2014)
  • DIY home renovators aged 30-39 are more likely to undertake a renovation or demolition
  • Where an asbestos assessment was undertaken, 22% of DIY home renovators said they did it themselves.
  • Where asbestos was identified, 20% of home renovators removed it themselves.
  • Of those who removed themselves, 46% said it was because they knew how to do it, 39% said it was to save money.
  • 21% didn’t seek any information and relied on their own “common sense/judgment”

These statistics identify there is still a lack of knowledge and safety when dealing with asbestos in the personal place of residence.

It is universally accepted that there is no safe level of exposure to asbestos for the contraction of mesothelioma and that small exposures can cause the deadly cancer. It is always best to get an asbestos -trained professional, to identify and safely remove asbestos in the home.

Contact AMAA on 1800 017 758 or info@asbestosassociation.com.au for further information.