Armidale Regional Council lends a hand after property owners lumped with expensive asbestos clean up

An asbestos removalist. Photo: Rohan Thomson.
An asbestos removalist. Photo: Rohan Thomson.

LIGHTNING that struck a cottage on Boorolong Road has contaminated a property with 40 tonnes of friable asbestos.

Armidale Regional Council has agreed to foot the bill for $7080 to help and warns others to take the dangers of asbestos seriously.

Boorolong Road property owner Michael Dunlop said they fell victim to a severe electrical storm on January 12.

“Later that night we heard banging noises, we went out to investigate and found that the cottage was well alight,” Mr Dunlop said.

“I called Triple Zero and a number of fire teams attended, however the building was destroyed by the time they arrived.

“The fire crews advised there could be asbestos in the debris.”

It’s estimated the total cost of the clean up is close to $27,000 for a Class A removalist to deal with the debris.

An area of 18 square metres around the cottage has been contaminated.

Mr Dunlop said he approached Council because they want to do the job properly, but couldn’t afford to be lumped with the financial burden.

“We want to clean this site properly and not leave any dangerous material for subsequent occupiers of the property,” he said.

“The building was unoccupied and not insured.”

Armidale Regional Council made the decision to reduce the fees for disposal in a meeting on October 25.