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Asbestos found in recycled mulch next to playground in Melbourne’s west


asbestos The substance was found in recycled mulch at a park in Melbourne’s west, prompting the closure of a playground and inspections of other public spaces.

Local resident Jason Murphy reported the tanbark discovery near the new playground at Donald McLean Reserve in Spotswood to the local council earlier this week. items.

Hobson’s Bay Council in Melbourne’s west confirmed the two pieces of material had been sent for testing and results on Wednesday confirmed they contained asbestos. The playground has been closed since Tuesday.

The council said it was “conducting a thorough inspection of all open spaces and conservation areas where we use recycled mulch from this particular supplier”.

Mr Murphy, a Yarraville father-of-two, was visiting the park with his children on Monday when he made the discovery.

“I was sitting under a tree, near some cover, when I noticed there was a piece of wood in there,” he said.

“I just thought, ‘This is weird, I wonder what else is here?’ and then I found crunchy building materials, insulated wires and this white composite material.”

Murphy reported the material Monday after discovering it next to a now-closed playground. Photograph: James Ross/AAP

exist a statementthe commission said it is working with materials hygienists and the state Environmental Protection Agency to ensure hazardous materials are removed.

“The safety of our communities is our top priority and the council is working with the Department of Environmental Protection and Health Officers to inspect other sites where this covering is used,” the council said in a statement.

“All playgrounds within Hobson’s Bay are regularly inspected by safety auditors, including new protected areas before they open.”

The council said the asbestos material was found in recycled mulch products around mature tree plantings and “original soft mulch” was also used around the playground.

Victoria’s Environmental Protection Agency has carried out preventive inspections of commercial mulch manufacturers after asbestos was found in soil at a Sydney park. Bringing more discoveries to New South Wales and Queensland.

The agency inspected 59 manufacturers victoriaand said on Wednesday that no traces of asbestos were found in their garden mulch products.

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While most producers have good systems and processes in place to ensure clean coverings, six producers were required to tighten controls to prevent contamination from occurring.

Free garden mulch from a popular online market has also attracted the attention of the environmental watchdog after a resident in Heathmount, in Melbourne’s east, received the mulch containing construction debris and asbestos.

The EPA says this highlights why garden mulch should only be obtained from reliable sources that have been inspected for quality.

“I urge the community to be wary of anyone offering garden mulch who cannot demonstrate that they follow appropriate high standards and quality checks to avoid contamination,” Duncan Pendry, the agency’s director of regulatory services, said Wednesday.

Asbestos testing was triggered after fragments of bonded asbestos were found in Sydney’s Rozelle Park.

At least 75 locations including parks and schoolshas been confirmed to be contaminated by trace amounts of materials.

Queensland authorities have identified at least 90 sites for investigation after contaminated mulch was removed from two stockpiles.

The EPA has taken legal action against four Victorian individuals or businesses over improper handling of asbestos this financial year.

Businesses found guilty of improperly handling materials face penalties of up to $2 million.



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