Clean-Up: Project Overview
In undertaking the clean-up, our aims are to ensure that it:
- is done safely;
- is done as quickly as possible;
is where possible scheduled so that destroyed houses adjacent to those still standing will be cleared first so that people can return to their homes as quickly as possible;
maximises benefits to property owners by preserving their insurance payout; and
- maximises the value of the land by providing certification that the property is free of contaminants following clean-up.
Priority has been given to stabilising contaminants, providing for the safety of workers and those still residing in the affected areas. To stabilise contaminants a binding compound was sprayed over the affected house sites. This compound acts like a glue to contain asbestos and other contaminants. Air quality tests indicate that contaminants have been effectively contained to date.
The spraying of the affected area is a temporary measure to stabilise contaminants and does not make the area safe for the return of residents. During the removal of building debris there will be an increased risk and anyone residing in adjacent properties will be encouraged to leave and, if necessary, take up temporary emergency accommodation by contacting the Department for Child Protection and Family Support Emergency Services Officer on 0417 457 583. The clean-up will not be able to progress if residents remain in adjacent properties.
A plan has been developed for the disposal of the very significant quantity of building debris, hazardous materials and contaminated topsoil resulting from the fire.
On 9 February 2016, agreement was reached with the Shire of Mundaring to appoint Mr Rene Baur, Manager Building Assets, to project manage the clean-up. Rene coordinated the clean-up of 57 properties destroyed in the 2014 Parkerville-Stoneville-Mt Helena fire. An Administrative Support Officer from the Shire of Mundaring has also been appointed to assist Rene.
The clean-up following the Waroona Complex Fire will be the most complex to be undertaken by the State in terms of:
the number of dwellings destroyed - 181 residential properties and businesses as well as a large number of farm buildings and sheds;
the fire impacted an area of 69,000ha area with a perimeter of 398km;
the nature of the hazards - including asbestos, treated timber, chemicals, unstable structures and loose debris; and
the need to protect people still residing in the area, as well as those workers restoring services and stabilising the area.
Department of Health asbestos inspection
The Department of Health, together with Shire of
Harvey officers, undertook inspections for asbestos contamination of standing
homes in Yarloop. 17 homes were found to be contaminated, 16 homes with low to
moderate impact and one home with a considerable impact. Department of Health either
affixed an advisory document package to the front door or gave the package to
Department of Health Report
Asbestos Awarness Summary Information
Thanks to the Minderoo Foundation and GCG Health Safety & Hygiene for running the two Asbestos Awareness Workshops which were attended by almost 50 people. Attendees received protective equipment including masks, gloves, shoe covers, coveralls and materials for decontamination of equipment (spray bottle, bags and tape to safely leave behind contaminated materials).
A summary of the information provided and some useful references are available here.