As NSW experiences one of the worst fire seasons in decades, WorkCover NSW has waived the five-day asbestos removal notification to allow immediate clean-ups.

The safety regulation has been removed due to the disastrous circumstances and the greatly increased risk to the public from buildings destroyed by fire.

Workcover NSW Work Health and Safety Division General Manager, John Watson, says speeding up assessments will make sure the deadly material can be got rid of as quickly as possible.

“Residents are being urged to seek out information on the potential risks of being exposed to asbestos and how to safely manage asbestos when cleaning up after fire,” said Mr Watson.

“As fire-fighters and other emergency service workers assess the damage, and residents begin to repair or rebuild, we want to make people aware of the danger of asbestos.”

“We must ensure that all sections of the community are aware of the dangers of asbestos and that asbestos debris is safely managed and the health of the community is protected.”

Asbestos removal licence holders can be found on the WorkCover website or by contacting WorkCover on 13 10 50.

All fire damaged asbestos material to be removed needs to be notified to WorkCover by the removalist. The five day notification timeframe has only been waived for premises affected by fire.

Anyone who believes they have found asbestos should avoid disturbing the material at all costs, and keep any asbestos debris wet until it can be safely removed.