Donesafe News

Have you warned your staff about Mr Fluffy?

How to manage asbestos safely

It’s a silent killer.

Australia has always been known as a place wherein any one photo, there’s possibly 1000’s of things that could kill you. Traditionally we think of insects and animals like spiders, snakes, sharks and crocodiles. The Sydney Funnel Web Spider will even blow a bubble and wait to get you in your own pool!

But perhaps another killer out there is less known and less suspected: Loose fill asbestos. Loose fill asbestos was sold as ceiling insulation in the 1960s’ and 1970’s for residential and commercial premises mainly by one company trading as Mr Fluffy.

If you employ staff to work in Construction, Plumbing, Electrical engineering, painting or any role that involves working on a structure, then read on!

Each year, we take a designated pause in time during November for Asbestos Awareness Month to raise necessary awareness about lung cancer and mesothelioma.

Australia has one of the highest rates of asbestos-related illness in the world. Mesothelioma is caused by asbestos exposure. In the United States, asbestos-caused lung cancer claims an estimated 10,000 lives every year. It’s time to know the dangers and learn how to stay safe when it comes to asbestos. The more you know about the material and the risk it holds, the safer you and your workers will be.

Let’s face it, its never safe to assume. There is a risk of asbestos in any house or building built or renovated before 1987, yet many people are unaware that they are living with such a threat.

What is Asbestos?

Everyone’s heard of asbestos, but do you know what it is? Asbestos refers to a set of six naturally occurring fibrous minerals. Three of the most common are; Chrysotile, Armosite, and Crocidolite.

The various asbestos types can be differentiated by colour

  • Crocidolite is blue
  • Armosite is brown
  • Chrysotile is white

The fibres of asbestos are small yet mighty. They have been used quite frequently in building and manufacturing during the twentieth century. The high use of the material is due to the low costs and durability. The product is highly heat-resistant and used in insulating materials.

People + Asbestos = What?

Common Mesothelioma Symptoms 
The first symptoms include chest or abdominal pain, bloating and shortness of breath. Early-stage signs can be slight, these can often be mistaken for normal aches and pains or symptoms of less serious illnesses.

Where is Asbestos?

Inside the home

  • Roofing, flooring and wall sheeting
  • Flue Pipes
  • Putty and glues
  • Electrical
  • Concrete framework
  • Plumbing
  • Textured Paint
  • Vinyl floor tiles or coverings

Outside the home

  • Fencing
  • Guttering
  • Garages
  • Insulation for hot water pipes and tank
  • Garden Sheds

In the workplace

Need to alert your safety manager to the potential risks of asbestos. Donesafe’s safety platform gives you the ability to input hazards and carry out assessments of working conditions through Ergonomic Assessments. Photos and videos can be attached to all records to ensure in-depth details have been captured. We believe tasks can be completed quicker if the right information is provided. The correct people will be contacted via notifications, SMS and/or email for the asbestos matter and a solution can be provided quickly. Once all tasks have been completed, the form can be marked as done. This is just one of the features Donesafe has to offer, click here to view all features and find out more.

And as always, keep safe out there.

By Donesafe at

For a paperless, jargon-free business safety solution that you can manage from your phone, click here to get in contact and ask about how you can try Donesafe for FREE or visit our features page to find out more.


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