Asbestos Removal FAQs

Yes. ATR can provide all or part of the following services:

  • Pick up & disposal
  • Demolition
  • Sampling (to verify if a material contains asbestos fibres)
  • Air monitoring
  • Clearance certificates

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral fibre that can cause lung diseases, including cancer. It was used widely in the construction, shipyards, power stations, boilermakers & plumbing industries during the 1950s, ‘60s and ‘70s. Its common use was due to its versatility & characteristics to withstand heat, erosion and decay. It also has fire & water resistant properties.

When asbestos fibres are bonded to another material, such as a cement or resin binder, it is known as bonded asbestos. It cannot be crumbled, pulverised or reduced to a powder by hand pressure alone when dry.

NO. An accredited & SafeWork licensed contractor must be used for any bonded asbestos removal over 10m2 in area.

  • flat (fibro), corrugated or compressed asbestos cement (AC) sheeting;
  • Water, drainage & flue pipes;
  • Vinyl floor tiles.

Refer to our ‘Common locations’ guides or contact our office.

Yes. We often get asked to simply remove the linings (walls, ceilings &/or roofs). ATR can do as little or as much as you like.

The main areas for demolition are:

  • Roofs
  • Linings (walls & ceilings)
  • Frame
  • Slab

Asbestos materials can be found in many places around the home.

The most likely places are:

  • Backing of vinyl sheet floor covering
  • Carpet underlay
  • Cement flooring
  • Compressed asbestos sheet
  • Flues to fireplaces
  • Insulation below wood heater
  • Internal and external ventilators
  • Internal angle mouldings
  • Internal walls & ceiling
  • Kitchen splashback
  • Loose fill insulation in roof cavity
  • “Tilux” marble finish wall panel
  • Vinyl floor tiles
  • Wall sheeting – internal

Refer to our ‘Common locations’ guides or contact our office.

  • Backing for electrical meter boards
  • Dog kennel
  • Downpipes
  • Eaves and gables ends
  • External angle mouldings
  • Fence
  • Garage
  • Gutters
  • Insulation for hot water pipes and tank
  • Internal and external ventilators
  • Ridge capping
  • Sheds & external toilets
  • Wall sheeting – external

Asbestos was phased out during the 80’s & prohibited completely after 31 December 2003. It cannot be manufactured, imported, used or recycled in Australia.

SafeWork NSW must be notified at least 5 working days prior to commencement. The law also requires all ‘stakeholders’ to be notified.

These include:

  • The person who commissioned the asbestos removal work
  • A person conducting a business or undertaking at the workplace
  • The occupier of the domestic premises
  • The owner of the domestic premises, &
  • Anyone occupying premises in the immediate vicinity of the workplace.

Potentially yes. If bonded asbestos is broken, aged, weathered or fire damaged it presents a higher risk of asbestos fibres becoming airborne & inhaled.

NO. Any person removing more than 10m2 of bonded asbestos or any amount of friable asbestos must be accredited & hold a current & valid asbestos removal licence issued by SafeWork NSW.

Friable asbestos material is any material that contains asbestos and is in the form of a powder, or can be crumbled, pulverized or reduced to powder by hand pressure when dry. Asbestos in this form is considered extremely hazardous. Friable asbestos was mainly used as lagging for pipes, sprayed insulation material and fire rated doors.

When bonded asbestos deteriorates due to age, weathering or fire it weakens the bonding of the asbestos fibres to the resin. This makes the potential for asbestos fibres becoming airborne far greater. We highly recommend inspection by an accredited hygienist or licensed asbestos contractor should you have concerns about the condition of any bonded asbestos material at your home or business.

Asbestos is a known carcinogen (cancer causing substance or agent). The inhalation of asbestos fibres is known to cause mesothelioma, lung cancer & asbestosis (see descriptions below).

Asbestos poses a risk to health whenever asbestos fibres become airborne & people are exposed to these fibres.

  • Malignant mesothelioma is a cancer of the outer covering of the lung or the abdominal cavity. It is usually fatal.
  • Lung cancer has been shown to be caused by all types of asbestos. The average latency period (the amount of time it remains hidden) of the disease, from the first exposure to asbestos, ranges from 20 to 30 years. Lung cancer symptoms are rarely felt until the disease has developed to an advanced stage.
  • Asbestosis is a form of lung disease directly caused by inhaling asbestos fibres, causing a scarring (fibrosis) of the lung tissue which decreases the ability of the lungs to transfer oxygen to the blood. The latency period of asbestosis is generally between 15 & 25 years.

Yes. Ask your ATR consultant about our truck service for bonded asbestos disposal (wrapped or unwrapped). ATR are fully licensed bonded asbestos removalists that can demolish any asbestos structures or linings from your home or business.

No. Never cut or drill into bonded asbestos material. This causes the asbestos fibres to be released & increases the risk of inhalation.

Yes, there are 2 types of asbestos licenses:

  • A licence type – The holder can remove both bonded & friable asbestos
  • B licence type – The holder can remove bonded asbestos only

ATR’s commitment to the safety of our clients, staff & contractors is second to none & is a core philosophy of our business. Listed below are the reasons why ATR should be your first choice for all your bonded asbestos removal needs;

  • In 2009 ATR received the “Highly Commended Finalist SafeWork NSW WorkSafe Awards” for Best Workplace Health & Safety Practices in Small Business. The only demolition company in the history of the awards (at that time) to receive an award or to make the finals.
  • We only use experienced, highly trained & qualified staff to carry out the job. ATR was also recognised as the first & only demolition company in NSW to have their workforce complete the Certificate III trade qualification for general Construction – Demolition.
  • We provide all the necessary equipment to safely remove the asbestos & notify SafeWork, neighbours & residents of our activities.
  • We erect signage & barriers to keep out unauthorised persons.
  • We ensure that the asbestos is sprayed with a PVA glue & water mixture to contain any fibres. The asbestos is then bagged or wrapped in thick plastic & sealed with minimum on site breakage. This greatly reduces the chance of any airborne fibres being released.

HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) vacuums are used to capture large amounts of very small particles such as asbestos fibres that other vacuum cleaners would simply recirculate back into the air of your home. Never vacuum asbestos containing dust (ACD) with a normal vacuum. This will cause the asbestos fibres to become airborne & contaminate the areas.

Follow the various links in our asbestos section to find a wealth of information relating to asbestos from government, private companies & support groups.