Quarry site in Australia threatens residents with asbestos exposure

Doctors in Australia are worried about residents living near a basalt quarry that will soon operate on land contaminated with asbestos, reports the Central Western Daily.

Dr. Sarah McCracken lives across the street from the site, but she isn’t the only one concerned about the neighborhood development – many residents are worried too, but they aren’t as knowledgeable about the deadly fibers as her.

According to McCracken, the North South Wales Department of Planning labeled the project as "negligible" and "low risk" in a report that approved the quarry. An air monitoring program will keep asbestos levels below .01 fibers per millilitre of air. New sources say that the department has placed 74 other conditions to protect nearby residents.

"There is no safe level of exposure to asbestos," McCracken said. "Diseases related to asbestos are deadly. You die gasping for every last breath."

She added that the level designated by the department is not enough to protect people from developing cancers such as mesothelioma.

Many people who suffer from mesothelioma file asbestos lawsuits seeking compensation from the parties responsible for exposing them to the deadly mineral.