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Family's asbestos fears confirmed

26 September 2013 Reporter

A family’s fears that their rental property in Melbourne may be contaminated by asbestos have been confirmed.

Jim’s Building Inspections, who were contacted by the family, has established that a sample of crumbling ‘fake brick’ cladding material from a rental property in Brooklyn in Melbourne’s west does contain asbestos.

Jim’s Building Inspections franchisor Phil Smallman said the fearful tenants who had just recently moved in to the property had now vacated it.

“Following our report and media coverage on the situation the rental agency has agreed to allow the family to exit the lease,” Mr Smallman explained.

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Jim’s Building Inspection hopes the landlord has insurance and will agree to repairs to ensure the asbestos is contained or removed before renting out the property again.

After seeking, but not receiving any advice or assistance from the local council, the family contacted Jim’s Building Inspections to try and verify the presence of asbestos.

Three samples from the brick cladding at the front, the laundry floor and the toilet walls were sent off a sample to a lab for testing.

“Whilst the laundry floor was found to be asbestos free, the toilet walls and fake brick cladding material on the outside of the house did have asbestos, and the brick cladding is considered ’high risk’ due to its poor and crumbling condition.

“We are also very concerned about the adjoining shed on the neighbouring property. We believe the family living there, who are also probably renters, have recently arrived in Australia and may not be aware of the dangers.

Ms Smallman has recommended that anyone who suspects asbestos in their property to have a property inspection and testing done to ascertain the risk.

“My advice is don’t take a chance. It’s simply not worth it.”

Family's asbestos fears confirmed
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