Loose-fill asbestos is raw crushed asbestos, which in the 1960s and 70s was installed as ceiling insulation in an unknown number of NSW homes. Over time hazardous airborne fibres can move from the ceiling into living spaces.
Earlier experience in both NSW and the ACT has demonstrated that simply removing loose-fill asbestos from a ceiling cavity does not remove the enduring hazard.
The NSW Government, with input from a range of experts, has determined that demolition, comprehensive site remediation and disposal are the best ways to ensure the health and safety of the NSW community.
The Voluntary Purchase and Demolition Program (the Program) and its associated financial assistance package provide safety, certainty and support for NSW residents.
Related measures include new laws to identify properties affected by loose-fill asbestos insulation and to protect residents, workers and communities.
Under the Home Building Act 1989 the NSW Government is required to maintain a register of residential properties that contain loose-fill asbestos insulation. This enables emergency services, tradespeople, Councils and the broader community to check whether a particular property is affected.
Property testing undertaken by licensed asbestos assessors is the best and safest way to determine whether or not a property contains loose-fill asbestos insulation.