quick history of asbestos

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2 quick history of asbestos 2500BC Asbestos used embalming Pharaohs and cooking pots. c100bc Roman historian Pliny notes illness and death for slaves wearing asbestos cloth 1880s Major asbestos mines open in Canada and South Africa, America, Italy and Russia 1898 British factory safety inspectors express concern about asbestos dust 1926 First successful compensation claim by sick asbestos worker in US, Asbestosis given name 1940 Lang Hancock begins mining asbestos at Wittenoom CSR takes over in ACMs starts being used widely in domestic housing st case of mesothelioma detected at Wittenoom, the man dies 1970 Building unions across Australia commence industrial action to ban asbestos 1977 First mesothelioma victim to sue CSR subsidiary, he dies before case gets to court 1985 manufacture and installation of blue, brown and grey asbestos banned 1988 first court victories against CSR for Wittenoom mesothelioma victims 31/12/2003 Australian ban on all use of chrysotile asbestos comes into effect

3 Legacy of past practices Every time your walk into an office building, a home, a factory; every time you put your foot on the break, ride in a train, see a bulldozer at work. Every time you see or do any of these things, the chances are that a product from James Hardie (Asbestos) Group has a part in it. John Reid, Chairman of James Hardie Asbestos Ltd Hardie Ferodo 1000: A James Hardie Group and Activity Report, 1978 Australia has one of the highest incidence rates of mesothelioma in the world. Safe Work Australia Asbestos Related Disease Indicators, September 2010

4 Herald Sun, 12 October 2014 Canberra Times, 12 May 2014 Asbestos dumped near child care centre Daily Telegraph 15 June 2013 Sydney Morning Herald, 16 September 2013 Canberra Times, 8 November 2014 Canberra Times, 11 April 2014

5 700 Deaths due to mesothelioma: number by sex, 1997 to Males Females Total persons Safe Work Australia, Asbestos Related Disease Indicators, September 2014

6 Introducing a meso warrior Lou Williams Father dies in 1985 of pleural mesothelioma, aged 54. Diagnosed with Peritoneal mesothelioma in 2003 Diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma in 2009 Going through 4 th round of chemotherapy late 2014 Currently Australian National Director, Global Ban Asbestos Network (GBAN)

7 Asbestos Management Review and Report Released 16 August 2012 Objective: Make recommendations for a national strategic plan to improve asbestos awareness and management. Broad remit covering asbestos in occupational, environmental and public health contexts 12 recommendations to improve arrangements for asbestos awareness and management Sept 2012 Australian Govt announces establishment of independent agency

8 Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency Act 2013 passed with bipartisan support assent 21 June 2013 Agency commenced operation on 1 July 2013 Agency will focus on issues beyond work health and safety to encompass environmental and public health issues The Agency and Minister will be informed by an Asbestos Safety and Eradication Council 3 June 2013 Australian Government announces National Asbestos Exposure Register to be managed by agency.

9 Functions of Agency Coordinate, monitor and report on the implementation of the National Strategic Plan for Asbestos Management and Awareness Provide advice to the Minister about asbestos safety and management Liaise with Commonwealth, State, Territory and local and other governments, agencies or bodies Commission, monitor and promote research about asbestos safety.

10 Asbestos Safety and Eradication Council Geoff Fary, Chair Dr Ian Gardner Peter Dunphy Mark McCabe Lex McCulloch Carolyn Davis, Industry Observer Dr Robert Walters Michael Borowick Tracey Browne Barry Robson Tanya Segelov

11 Awareness Increased community awareness of risks & health impacts Improved accessibility to information Cultural and behavioural change in commercial and residential environments. Best Practice Evidence-based best practice to minimise risks Model training for workers likely to be exposed and increased competencies Support for communities to manage risk during natural disasters and emergencies Improved ACM transport, storage and disposal. National Strategic Plan Identification Evidence-based model for grading in-situ asbestos Improved stabilisation for ACMs in poor condition Improved ID and management of info regarding asbestos contaminated land Estimate total presence of ACMs in built environment Improved ID of risks, particularly in DIY renovators Coordinated response when ACMs in imported products are identified. Removal Priority actions to support removal of ACM in poor condition Evidence-based practical options for removing ACMs in poor condition Asbestos removal infrastructure can meet the future needs and demands of ageing ACMs Review of barriers to safe removal of ACMs and evaluation of challenges faced by government, commercial and residential sectors. Research Coordination of key research supporting evidence informed policy and practice Commission research identifying practical and innovative approaches to prevent or minimise risks from exposure to asbestos. International Leadership Effective coordination of international issues relating to asbestos and ARDs Australia recognised an international voice of global campaign against asbestos hazards Best practice processes on awareness, management and eradication shared internationally.

12 Next steps for National Strategic Plan NSP Realistic achievements Aspirational goals beyond 2018

13 Third wave DIY taking off $55 billion per year industry* ACMs deteriorate over time if not maintained properly Estimated one third of current homes built between 1945 to the late 1980s contains asbestos ACMs can be found in most areas of house, kitchen, bathroom, underfloor, outside cladding *

14 Third wave DIY problems Australian Mesothelioma Register released 26 August new notifications of mesothelioma in % male, 20% female 137 victims reported non-occupational exposure: 51 respondents reported doing major home renovations involving asbestos (excluding paid work), 19 of these were women 69 respondents reported living in a house when renovation work was done

15 Medical Journal of Australia 195 (5), 5 September 2011 Key findings: Medical research Increasing incidence of malignant mesothelioma after exposure to asbestos during home maintenance and renovation (Western Australia) 87 reported cases of mesothelioma attributed to exposure during home maintenance and renovation since Over the past 20 years there has been a rise in the number of third-wave victims who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma after short-term and/or low-levels of exposure to asbestos in the home or workplace.

16 Medical research Increasing incidence of malignant mesothelioma after exposure to asbestos during home maintenance and renovation 2011 (Western Australia) Home Renovators

17 Medical research Increasing incidence of malignant mesothelioma after exposure to asbestos during home maintenance and renovation 2011 (Western Australia) Age adjusted increase in relative incidence rates of malignant mesothelioma attributed to asbestos exposure during home renovation Western Australia

18 Medical research Asbestos exposure during home renovation in New South Wales Medical Journal of Australia 199 (6), 16 September 2013 Key findings: 1597 survey participants (44.2% of those surveyed) had renovated their homes. 53.7% of this group had engaged in DIY activities. 61% of this group reported having been exposed to asbestos during renovations. 39.3% reported that their partner had been exposed 22.8% reported that their children had been exposed Home renovators constitute the largest proportion of all non-occupational cases of mesothelioma.

19 Third wave case studies Lincoln Hall Died from mesothelioma at age 56. Only known exposure to asbestos was while helping his father build two cubby houses from asbestos cement sheets as a child in the mid 1960s. Stephen Wickham Diagnosed with mesothelioma in Only known exposure was doing DIY renovations on his fence and garage made of AC sheeting in Serafina Salucci Diagnosed with mesothelioma in Only known exposure to asbestos was while playing in her backyard at home when aged 7 while her father cut asbestos sheeting to build a garage. Adam Sager Died from mesothelioma at age 25. Was unknowingly exposed to asbestos during home renovations by his parents when he was just 18 months old.

20 What we have been doing Establishment of agency, secretariat for Council Recruitment of staff Revising national strategic plan Admin of independent monitors for NBN/Telstra pits Enhancing as one stop shop

21 Promoting awareness of health dangers including a safety leaflet available in 13 community languages Baseline community awareness survey preliminary results due soon Assisting advocacy groups to raise awareness Best practice in asbestos handling and management including a pilot in training harmonisation in the utilities sector Testing a range of asbestos identification and grading tools for ACMs

22 Working with Customs to identify and prevent importations Developing training programme for asbestos removal in indigenous housing Online national database of licenced asbestos disposal (removal) facilities Coordinating national research on asbestos exposure including online exposure register with over 1,000 responses to date Conference Melbourne Nov with leading international speakers

23 Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency Level 8, 255 Elizabeth Street, SYDNEY NSW

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