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Air Samples Show No Signs Of Asbestos

Air Samples Show No Signs Of Asbestos

The air samples taken from sites in Patea by health officials are clear of asbestos. The results, which were released today (Monday), show that there was no asbestos in the air at the time the samples were taken.

The samples were taken from inside the public library, at the former freezing works site and near the public swimming pool on Saturday. Patea residents were told the results of the air samples at a public meeting this evening (Monday).

Results of 22 dust samples also showed no asbestos. “Taken together with the dust samples, they indicate that there is no current risk to Patea residents, and that if there was any exposure to asbestos it is likely to have been very low,” Taranaki Medical Officer of Health Richard Hoskins says.

“As we’ve stated throughout, it means the risk of any long-term health consequences is so small that it cannot be calculated.” Dr Hoskins said the sites were chosen on advice from lab scientists and widely covered the area and types of facilities in Patea.

He says Public Health staff will review plans for remediation of the site to ensure any potential health risks to the community for the clean up activities are managed appropriately. Residents should not handle materials from or go on to the works site.

Patea residents were evacuated on Wednesday morning as a precautionary measure when the town’s freezing works caught fire. It was thought there could have been asbestos fibres in the smoke and dust. Residents returned home when the ash and smoke had settled.


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