Wingecarribee Shire Council has today confirmed an unknown amount of asbestos has been found in two unsealed gravel roads on the outskirts of Robertson.
Yeola and Vandenberg Roads have both returned positive readings of the material. In total six kilometres of road is under investigation. Fountaindale and Lees Roads are also being investigated.
Wingecarribee Shire Council General Manager Jason Gordon said the roads were tested after Council received notification from a neighbouring resident.
“We’ve received two positive readings on both of these roads for an unknown quantity of asbestos,” he said.
“We’ve subsequently ordered more detailed tests, both of the road itself and surrounding air quality, be undertaken immediately.”
The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA), Department of Health and WorkCover NSW have all been notified.
“Council will be working closely with all the relevant public authorities to ensure the matter is fully investigated and brought to a close as soon as possible,” Mr Gordon said.
“In the interim, the affected sections of roads will be watered down until a permanent solution, which may involve sealing the road, is carried out.”
Whilst only Lees Road is a through road, Council has taken the decision to close the roads to all but local traffic.
The source of the material, which initial investigations lead to believe were laid in 2008, will also be the subject of further investigations.
“Council will engage an independent consultant to investigate the process and origin of the material used some four years ago, and to confirm if the material was in fact used elsewhere across the Shire,” he said.
“Until further tests are carried out, we don’t know how much of the material is present in the identified roads.
“Whilst this type of issue is not unique to our Shire, and even if the risks are low, I’ve requested that both a current and retrospective risk assessment be carried out as a priority in conjunction with the proper authorities.”
Approximately 40 residential properties have been identified as residing on the affected roads. Residents of these properties will today be informed of the tests and be kept updated of future actions.
Residents living on the identified roads wanting further information are encouraged to contact Council on mobile 0429 997 193 during business hours.