Tourists still ignore warning signs in blue asbestos town
The World Health Organisation states there is no safe level of exposure that can protect a person from developing an asbestos related disease. Even minimal exposure can result in the incurable disease, mesothelioma.
This is not a tourist destination and is not safe. Why take the risk!
Inside the remote Western Australian ghost town that once exported deadly blue asbestos to the world – where just breathing the air could kill you but tourists still ignore warning signs
Thirty years ago Midnight Oil sang about the human and environmental devastation caused by asbestos mining in the remote Western Australian town of Wittenoom.
Today, tourists are drawn to the inspiration for the 1990 hit single Blue Sky Mine and the chart-topping album Blue Sky Mining, while two residents still live at the contaminated site.
The rest of a population that totalled 20,000 through its heyday long ago abandoned the area, which has been taken off maps and is no longer marked by road signs.
The Wittenoom mine which once exported blue asbestos to the world was closed in 1966 and is blamed for causing the deaths of at least 2000 workers and their families who breathed in the deadly fibres.
The mine and the town built to support its operation have been described as forming the largest contaminated industrial site in the Southern Hemisphere but Wittenoom has become an unlikely and dangerous tourist attraction.
Two residents are holding out against Western Australian government urgings to get out and thousands of curious travellers who drive through the Pilbara each year are unable to resist making the trek to the ghost town.