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Patea Site Gets Dust Suppressant


Taranaki Regional Council media release
28 February 2008
For immediate release


Patea Site Gets Dust Suppressant


Contractors are today (Feb 28) beginning to apply dust suppressant at the site of the burnt-out Patea freezing works.

The non-toxic suppressant, an acrylic resin called AW95, will bind and settle dust particles to help prevent any possibility of airborne asbestos contamination at the township, says the Taranaki Regional Council’s Director-Environment Quality, Gary Bedford.

The disused plant was largely destroyed in a major fire on Waitangi Day. There are concerns that asbestos could be released from the fire-damaged buidings. Although not toxic in itself, asbestos can be dangerous if fibres are inhaled.

Mr Bedford says the application of the AW95 is being managed in accordance with Department of Labour guidelines on asbestos sites and the Taranaki Regional Council will be monitoring air quality at the site as the project proceeds. The work is expected to be completed well within a week.

The contractor will make regular return visits to monitor the effectiveness of the binder and apply more if necessary.

The material is being applied with a water cannon or by hose where this is more effective. The Council and contractors have controls in place to contain run-off.

Until now, dust has been suppressed with a continuously operating water cannon.

Mr Bedford says the Taranaki Regional Council has also been advised that the owner of one section of the site, Noel McColl, is today beginning work to contain debris and rubble that remain on his property after the fire.

Mr Bedford says today’s actions, coupled with the results of previous air and ash sampling that indicated there was no asbestos contamination in the township during the fire, should offer reassurance to Patea residents.

ENDS

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