Whistleblower: Australian School Remained Open Despite Asbestos Worries

A school located in Queensland, Australia, may have moved ahead with opening its doors to students this January despite warnings from officials that the building was contaminated with loose asbestos, according to a recent whistleblower’s report.

According to information reported earlier this month by the Warwick Daily News, members of Education Queensland were warned during a recent vacation by an asbestos expert that recent work performed on the Warwick West Day School had been done by unlicensed workers and could have potentially exposed dangerous asbestos fibers.

While school officials were skeptical of the expert’s claims, follow-up tests that were performed on debris from the school confirmed that asbestos fibers were indeed present, and likely exposed inside the building. According to the whistleblower, school officials were made aware of the test results five days before classes were to resume at the school.

However, despite the test results – and protocol that requires the school to notify parents within 24 hours of any “suspected” asbestos situation – the school was allowed to open as scheduled five days later without any public discussion of an asbestos scare.

According to the newspaper, parents only became aware of the asbestos problems through the “rumor mill” four days after classes had resumed. Only then did the school decide to act on the asbestos abatement project and, after reports of an initial attempt to remove asbestos while staff was still on the premises, it was finally carried out by the end of the month.

For those who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer that can be linked to asbestos exposure caused by a product or former employer, you may be entitled to financial compensation. Contact an experienced mesothelioma attorney to learn more about your rights and to explore pursuing a mesothelioma settlement.