On this page
- Asbestos.vic.gov.au overview
- Commitment to the National Strategic Plan
- About the Victorian Asbestos Eradication Agency
- Information about managing asbestos
- Information for licensed asbestos removalists
The Asbestos website
Asbestos.vic.gov.au is the home of advice for people concerned about Asbestos.
The use of all forms of asbestos has been banned in Australia since the end of 2003. This means that the import, manufacture, supply, sale and use or reuse of asbestos and asbestos-containing products is no longer permitted. The ban doesn't apply to asbestos installed prior to this date (eg in residential or commercial buildings).
Due to its strength, durability and resistance to fire and water, asbestos was used in a wide range of building products and materials up until the mid-1980s. Products that may contain asbestos include vinyl floor tiles, cement roof sheeting and wall lining, lagging and jointing material and fire blankets.
You should consult the site for information about the duties and responsibilities regarding Asbestos and the extent of your management or control for;
- Employers and your role in safe management of asbestos in workplaces
- Self employed and your role in health a safety related to asbestos
- Commercial property owners and what you need to know if you rent or lease a building to a business or businesses
- Employees and removing exposure to asbestos
- Laws and guidance relating to workplaces.
You also can find information describing health facts and different asbestos materials.
National Strategic Plan
Victoria has signed up to the National Strategic Plan. Find out more about the National Strategic Plan.
The Victorian Asbestos Eradication Agency
The Victorian Government has established an agency to target and prioritise the removal of asbestos from Government buildings across Victoria.
The Victorian Asbestos Eradication Agency (VAEA) will plan for and advise the government about removing asbestos in government buildings, including schools and hospitals.
The VAEA will enhance the safety of the Victorian community by working toward minimising the threat of asbestos-related diseases, such as mesothelioma and asbestosis. A comprehensive and consolidated register of asbestos in Victorian government buildings will be created to ensure the removal of asbestos in buildings of greatest concern are dealt with first.
A board of three Directors will be responsible for managing the affairs of the VAEA and include the following:
- Dianne Foggo (Chair)
- Simone Stevenson (Executive Director)
- Ross McCann
The VAEA will commence operations in early 2017.
Managing asbestos importation
To help government agencies manage the movement of asbestos across state lines, the Heads of Workplace Safety Authorities have developed a rapid response protocol. In addition, a fact sheet has been developed to guide businesses in managing the importation of goods or materials containing asbestos into Australia.
- Find out more about the rapid response protocol and fact sheets
- Find out more about raising awareness about the risk of imported products containing asbestos.
Asbestos removal must be done by a licensed removalist and WorkSafe must be notified of any work taking place. Find a licensed asbestos removalist
Generally, asbestos removal must be done by a removalist licensed by WorkSafe, or trained employees of a licence-holder. The licence-holder is usually required to notify WorkSafe in advance before any asbestos removal work is carried out. Unlicensed removal of limited amounts of non-friable asbestos is permitted under certain circumstances.
Class B licence-holders are only permitted to remove non-friable asbestos and must comply with a number of requirements, including:
- appointing a nominated supervisor to oversee the removal work
- developing a control plan before the job
- informing employees in the area of the proposed removal work
- using specific methods for removal, waste containment and waste disposal
- using signs and barricades
- providing decontamination facilities
- providing employees with information, training, personal protective clothing and equipment, and medical examinations.
Only Class A licence-holders are permitted to remove friable asbestos.
Class A licence-holders must comply with the same requirements outlined above for Class B licence holders, but must also implement a range of specific measures to carry out the work safely and control the risk, including using enclosures and always having the nominated supervisor on site. These are detailed in the OHS Regulations.