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It has been reported that the demolition of Abertillery Leisure Centre will cost an extra one million pounds and has been delayed by 18 months after asbestos was found. A survey apparently located brown asbestos, which had previously been missed.
Blaenau Gwent Council has reportedly suspended the demolition work until a new firm has removed the asbestos, at a cost of £998,992.00.
The Council has said that in spite of a special survey being carried out to check for asbestos, it was not mentioned in the previous report and was only discovered with demolition work had begun. The authority is now seeking legal advice. The original demolition work was meant to cost just under £400,000, but now the further £998,992.00 must be spent to remove the asbestos before the building can be demolished. The demolition will now reportedly not finish until August, whereas previously it had been set for completion in March 2017.
The material found was reportedly amosite, also known as brown asbestos. This product was often used in cement sheets and pipe insulation and can also be found in ceiling tiles and thermal insulation products. The fibres can be harmful to people if inhaled.
Andrew Stinchcombe of Novum Law comments “this highlights the fact that all of the buildings may contain asbestos. When the asbestos is disturbed, this can release fibres which can be inhaled. The asbestos fibres can then cause diseases to develop many decades later. These diseases can include mesothelioma, which is an incurable disease only caused by exposure to asbestos dust. It is therefore very important to be aware of asbestos that may be present in older buildings and to ensure that it is only removed by specialist contractors”.
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