Asbestos protocol action on RHH Redevelopment site

Ben Moloney,RHH Redevelopment Project Director

The RHH Redevelopment has been advised that the Managing Contractor is implementing safety protocols in relation to a recent incident of potential asbestos exposure on the construction site, Project Director, Ben Moloney said today.

“I have been advised that some staff of the Managing Contractor’s subcontractors were potentially exposed to asbestos while working in an isolated construction area in the current Royal Hobart Hospital campus,” Mr Moloney said.

Mr Moloney said that the works were not in a patient or staff area nor were they within K-Block, which is asbestos-free.

“What is of upmost importance is that the workers involved are offered support, together with detailed incident briefings and these are being instigated by the Managing Contractor.”

Mr Moloney said that he had received advice that materials potentially containing asbestos were identified during works immediately prior to Easter.

“As per appropriate safety protocols, works were ceased immediately, the area isolated and the project’s industrial hygienist inspected the area and took samples of the materials,” Mr Moloney said.

Mr Moloney said that the Managing Contractor advised late yesterday that the suspected materials contained friable asbestos fibres and the project’s industrial hygienist has recommended appropriate management of the affected area.

Mr Moloney said that the presence of asbestos at the Royal Hobart Hospital was well known which was why the Managing Contractor employed proactive asbestos management procedures.

“The project has sought detailed information from the Managing Contractor regarding their specific application of these procedures in this case.”

“The area will be cleaned and any asbestos removed by a licenced contractor before work in the affected area is recommenced,” Mr Moloney said.

“We are acting immediately to ensure our safety procedures continue to be strictly enforced,” Mr Moloney said.

“We are working closely with the Managing Contractor to ensure staff are supported and all works recommenced safely and appropriately.”

WorkSafe Tasmania has been notified of the matter.

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