Practical Environmental Solutions (PES) was contracted by civil engineering contractor KCE Civil Pty Ltd, on behalf of BHP Billiton to provide occupational hygiene advice and services to asbestos-contaminated soils on the site of Mount Arthur coal mine at Muswellbrook in the NSW Hunter Valley.
Fragments of asbestos-containing fibrous cement pipe had been observed on the surface and in ‘windrowed’ topsoils in an area of future mining expansion.
PES determined that affected soils were suitable for assessment under the adopted regulatory instrument in this state, the NSW and WA Guidelines for Asbestos Identification in soil.
PES provided the following services:
- Supervision of an operation to screen affected soils using a 23T excavator fitted with a sieve bucket;
- Conduct testing of material from stockpiles in accordance to Guidelines for the Assessment, Remediation and Management of Asbestos-Contaminated Sites (WA DoH, 2009);
- Atmospheric monitoring during times that identified asbestos-containing soils were being impacted upon;
- Preparation of an Asbestos Validation Report for the remediation of asbestos contamination in soil.
- Preparation of an ‘Unexpected Finds Protocol’ for this area of the site for inclusion in site safety management documentation.
With respect to the concentration of asbestos by weight in the affected soils, PES showed that soils were suitable to remain on site.