Demolition company fined $6,000

At a hearing in the Redcliffe Magistrates Court, a local demolitions company has been fined $6,000 for failing in its duty to ensure the health and safety of its employees while they were at work.

From 15 October 2018, the defendant engaged with a development company about to the demolition of three houses in Landsborough Avenue, Scarborough. All three houses appeared to have been built prior to 1990 and subsequent inspections and testing of materials confirmed they contained asbestos fibres in the wall sheeting, ceilings and soffits.

On 22 October 2018, the defendant company quoted $49,750 plus GST for the demolition work, including the removal of bonded asbestos containing material (ACM). A month later, it was engaged to do the demolition and sub-contracted a licensed asbestos removal company to remove the asbestos-containing soffit, walls and ceilings from two of the three residences. The defendant erroneously failed to identify the ACM in the third property.

On 10 December 2018, workers employed by the defendant company demolished the house at 145 Landsborough Avenue, reducing it to ground level using an excavator. Building waste and rubble was scraped into rough piles. Asbestos containing material hadn’t been removed prior to the demolition and there were visible pieces of ACM (such as wall sheeting) in those piles.

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