Margaret Brough is concerned about asbestos blowing into her family’s home from an adjacent demolished house. RESIDENTS living near a controversial demolition in Mickle Crescent have raised fears for their health after dust particles from the site entered their home.
Nanjing Night Net

Warrnambool City Council has tested the site for asbestos and told Rodger and Margaret Brough, who live near the Mickle Crescent house, the tests had come back negative.

Dust samples were taken from the exterior of two neighbouring homes and from the interior of another and no asbestos was detected in the samples, the council reported.

The house, built by the late clothing industry icon Sir Fletcher Jones, was demolished two weeks ago, despite opponents attempting to have the house included in council’s heritage overlay.

Mr Brough, whose elderly father-in-law also lives in the house, said dust from the demolition had blown in.

“Yes, there is dust in the house and there is quite significant amounts in rooms adjacent to the demolition,” he said.

“Certainly all the evidence we’ve looked at is that because the property wasn’t included in the heritage overlay they didn’t have a lot of obligations.

“There is no obligation to notify residents, although it’s recommended by WorkSafe.”

Mrs Brough said since the demolition their lives had been put on hold while they waited for the test results.

“It just highlights the protocol that when asbestos is being removed from a house neighbours should be kept informed,” she said.

“We have had our hands tied as we waited for these results.”

The council’s health and local laws manager Murray Murfett said neighbours near the site had raised some concerns regarding the dust.

“Council is monitoring the site and … will continue working with Worksafe and other agencies to ensure safety on the work site,” he said.

The tests come after residents said they were caught unaware by the demolition.

Last week, Mr Brough said he and other residents had been working to get the house included in the heritage overlay when he was told by a neighbour the roof was coming off on Saturday, February 25. The house was demolished within two days.

A planning permit was not needed for the demolition because the heritage overlay did not apply to the property.

The house was the subject of controversy recently when workers at a Warrnambool demolition business used an oxy torch to remove asbestos sheeting during a total fire ban.

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