Previous Updates - Wickham Fire Incident

Thursday 14 April - 11.30am

  • The Recovery Committee held a community drop-in session yesterday at the Good Life Church in Wickham. The next community drop-in session is scheduled for 3pm to 6.30pm on Wednesday 4 May, also at the Good Life Church in Wickham.
  • On Tuesday afternoon the northern section of Milford Street between The Avenue and the southern boundary of The Avenue Apartments was re-opened to vehicles, enabling access to The Avenue Apartment car parks.
  • Due to the works the Wool Stores building owner is undertaking to clean the roof of the remaining Wool Store building, Milford Street will remain closed to vehicles between Annie Street and the southern boundary of The Avenue Apartments.
  • Once the building owner has completed the clean-up of the Wool Store building roof, it is expected Milford Street will be cleaned, cleared and re-opened.
  • Novocastrian Demolition Services has been engaged on behalf of the Wool Store building owner to commence works to remove asbestos containing debris from the roof of the remaining Wool Store building from 4 April. This work will involve the installation of a crane within the Wool Store site to access the roof of the remaining building and progressively clean the debris left from the fire. Progress will be weather dependent but is expected to take approximately two weeks to complete. For further infomation on these works and access to Milford Street visit the Milford Street update page.
  • Significant progress has been made on the clean-up of public spaces. All parks, public roads and footpaths have now been cleaned and cleared, except for in close proximity to the fire site, which is currently in progress. More than 300 private properties have been cleaned and cleared.
  • Over 400 reports from residents have been made to the Environment Line. Residents who have not already registered and believe their home is impacted can contact the EPA via the Environment Line on 131 555 so an assessment can be booked.
  • Around 90 independent clean-up personnel remain in the field assessing and cleaning up private homes and removing debris on a daily basis.

Tuesday 12 April - 4.30pm

  • Earlier this afternoon the northern section of Milford Street between The Avenue and the southern boundary of The Avenue Apartments was re-opened to vehicles, enabling access to The Avenue Apartment car parks.
  • Due to the works the Wool Stores building owner is undertaking to clean the roof of the remaining Wool Store building, Milford Street will remain closed to vehicles between Annie Street and the southern boundary of The Avenue Apartments.
  • Once the building owner has completed the clean-up of the Wool Store building roof, it is expected Milford Street will be cleaned, cleared and re-opened.
  • The Recovery Committee has scheduled a community drop-in session for this Wednesday between 3pm and 6.30pm at the Good Life Church in Wickham.
  • Novocastrian Demolition Services has been engaged on behalf of the Wool Store building owner to commence works to remove asbestos containing debris from the roof of the remaining Wool Store building from 4 April. This work will involve the installation of a crane within the Wool Store site to access the roof of the remaining building and progressively clean the debris left from the fire. Progress will be weather dependent but is expected to take approximately two weeks to complete. For further infomation on these works and access to Milford Street visit the Milford Street update page.
  • Significant progress has been made on the clean-up. All parks, public roads and footpaths have now been cleaned and cleared, except for in close proximity to the fire site, which is currently in progress. More than 300 private properties have been cleaned and cleared.
  • Over 400 reports from residents have been made to the Environment Line. Residents who have not already registered and believe their home is impacted can contact the EPA via the Environment Line on 131 555 so an assessment can be booked.
  • Around 90 independent clean-up personnel remain in the field assessing and cleaning up private homes and removing debris on a daily basis.

Resumption of community sport at Waratah Park

  • To ensure the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle temporarily suspended high impact activities including mowing and park maintenance, along with community sport at Waratah Park following the Wickham Wool Store fire. Several mowing trials were undertaken at the park to ensure that mowing could be safely conducted from a staff and community perspective given the potential presence of asbestos materials.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during each mowing trial and spot samples were taken from the equipment and machinery used. The air monitoring results from each of the three trials have been analysed, showing asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were also clear of any traces of asbestos.
  • We also engaged an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor to inspect the Waratah grandstand building including the roof and gutters, to check whether any asbestos fragments were present. The Assessor undertook a visual inspection and took dust swabs from key areas, and no asbestos was detected.
  • These trials and inspections have informed our risk assessment and decision making for the safe resumption of our mowing and park maintenance services, which will now resume as normal, with ongoing safe work practices. Community sport is also able to resume at Waratah Park as at 6 April.

Islington Park mowing trials and recommencement of community sport

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors. Following the fire, multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • So we could plan for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance, we undertook a series of mowing trials at the park to ensure that mowing could be safely conducted from a staff and community perspective given the potential presence of asbestos materials. These trials were held on the 22 March, 30 March and 5 April.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during each mowing trial and spot samples were taken from the equipment and machinery used before cleaning. The air monitoring results from each of the three trials have been analysed, showing asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were clear of any traces of asbestos. In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also clear of asbestos.
  • These trials and inspections have informed our risk assessment and decision making for the safe resumption of our mowing and park maintenance services, which will now resume as normal, with ongoing safe work practices.
  • Community sport is also able to resume at the Islington Park sporting ground from Monday 11 April.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.

    In the unlikely event that asbestos fragments are found, this should continue to be reported to City of Newcastle by phone 02 4974 2000 or by emailing wickhamfire@ncc.nsw.gov.au so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Recommencement of green bin collections

  • Collection of green bins within some areas of Wickham and Islington was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the Wickham Woolshed fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. During the suspension we collected and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted areas.
  • The licenced asbestos contractor began progressively emptying and cleaning green bins in the area where services were suspended from Monday 21 March. These specialist contractors emptied each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then cleaned the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring was undertaken during the collection period.
  • This was a much slower, more detailed process than regular green bin collection, so it took some time for the approximately 700 green bins in the area to go through this manual collection and cleaning process.
  • City of Newcastle has now undertaken a risk assessment for the re-commencement of regular green bin collection and determined that it is appropriate to recommence collection of green bins across most of the impacted areas. This began on Wednesday 6 April, aside from the areas outlined below.
  • Due to their proximity to the fire site and the ongoing clean-up efforts in the adjacent area, green bins will continue to be collected and cleaned by a licenced asbestos removal contractor in the following streets:
    • Norfolk Avenue, Islington
    • Roslyn Avenue, Islington
    • Milford Street, Islington
    • Annie Street (southern side between Milford Street and John Street), Wickham
    • Robert Street (between Norfolk Avenue and Milford Street), Islington.
  • We ask residents in these areas to continue to leave their green bin on the kerb so it can be accessed by our contractor. We appreciate your patience, and we will keep residents in this area updated on when regular collection will recommence.

Monday 11 April - 9.15am

  • The Recovery Committee has scheduled a community drop-in session for this Wednesday between 3pm and 6.30pm at the Good Life Church in Wickham.
  • Novocastrian Demolition Services has been engaged on behalf of the Wool Store building owner to commence works to remove asbestos containing debris from the roof of the remaining Wool Store building from 4 April. This work will involve the installation of a crane within the Wool Store site to access the roof of the remaining building and progressively clean the debris left from the fire. Progress will be weather dependent but is expected to take approximately two weeks to complete. For further infomation on these works and access to Milford Street visit the Milford Street update page.
  • Significant progress has been made on the clean-up. All parks, public roads and footpaths have now been cleaned and cleared, except for in close proximity to the fire site, which is currently in progress. More than 300 private properties have been cleaned and cleared.
  • Over 400 reports from residents have been made to the Environment Line. Residents who have not already registered and believe their home is impacted can contact the EPA via the Environment Line on 131 555 so an assessment can be booked.
  • Around 90 independent clean-up personnel remain in the field assessing and cleaning up private homes and removing debris on a daily basis.

Resumption of community sport at Waratah Park

  • To ensure the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle temporarily suspended high impact activities including mowing and park maintenance, along with community sport at Waratah Park following the Wickham Wool Store fire. Several mowing trials were undertaken at the park to ensure that mowing could be safely conducted from a staff and community perspective given the potential presence of asbestos materials.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during each mowing trial and spot samples were taken from the equipment and machinery used. The air monitoring results from each of the three trials have been analysed, showing asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were also clear of any traces of asbestos.
  • We also engaged an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor to inspect the Waratah grandstand building including the roof and gutters, to check whether any asbestos fragments were present. The Assessor undertook a visual inspection and took dust swabs from key areas, and no asbestos was detected.
  • These trials and inspections have informed our risk assessment and decision making for the safe resumption of our mowing and park maintenance services, which will now resume as normal, with ongoing safe work practices. Community sport is also able to resume at Waratah Park as at 6 April.

Islington Park mowing trials and recommencement of community sport

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors. Following the fire, multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • So we could plan for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance, we undertook a series of mowing trials at the park to ensure that mowing could be safely conducted from a staff and community perspective given the potential presence of asbestos materials. These trials were held on the 22 March, 30 March and 5 April.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during each mowing trial and spot samples were taken from the equipment and machinery used before cleaning. The air monitoring results from each of the three trials have been analysed, showing asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were clear of any traces of asbestos. In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also clear of asbestos.
  • These trials and inspections have informed our risk assessment and decision making for the safe resumption of our mowing and park maintenance services, which will now resume as normal, with ongoing safe work practices.
  • Community sport is also able to resume at the Islington Park sporting ground from Monday 11 April.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.

    In the unlikely event that asbestos fragments are found, this should continue to be reported to City of Newcastle by phone 02 4974 2000 or by emailing wickhamfire@ncc.nsw.gov.au so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Recommencement of green bin collections

  • Collection of green bins within some areas of Wickham and Islington was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the Wickham Woolshed fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. During the suspension we collected and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted areas.
  • The licenced asbestos contractor began progressively emptying and cleaning green bins in the area where services were suspended from Monday 21 March. These specialist contractors emptied each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then cleaned the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring was undertaken during the collection period.
  • This was a much slower, more detailed process than regular green bin collection, so it took some time for the approximately 700 green bins in the area to go through this manual collection and cleaning process.
  • City of Newcastle has now undertaken a risk assessment for the re-commencement of regular green bin collection and determined that it is appropriate to recommence collection of green bins across most of the impacted areas. This began on Wednesday 6 April, aside from the areas outlined below.
  • Due to their proximity to the fire site and the ongoing clean-up efforts in the adjacent area, green bins will continue to be collected and cleaned by a licenced asbestos removal contractor in the following streets:
    • Norfolk Avenue, Islington
    • Roslyn Avenue, Islington
    • Milford Street, Islington
    • Annie Street (southern side between Milford Street and John Street), Wickham
    • Robert Street (between Norfolk Avenue and Milford Street), Islington.
  • We ask residents in these areas to continue to leave their green bin on the kerb so it can be accessed by our contractor. We appreciate your patience, and we will keep residents in this area updated on when regular collection will recommence.

Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Friday 8 April - 3.00pm

  • The Recovery Committee has scheduled a community drop-in session for this Wednesday between 3pm and 6.30pm at the Good Life Church in Wickham.
  • Novocastrian Demolition Services has been engaged on behalf of the Wool Store building owner to commence works to remove asbestos containing debris from the roof of the remaining Wool Store building from 4 April. This work will involve the installation of a crane within the Wool Store site to access the roof of the remaining building and progressively clean the debris left from the fire. Progress will be weather dependent but is expected to take approximately two weeks to complete. For further infomation on these works and access to Milford Street visit the Milford Street update page.
  • Significant progress has been made on the clean-up. All parks, public roads and footpaths have now been cleaned and cleared, except for in close proximity to the fire site, which is currently in progress. More than 300 private properties have been cleaned and cleared.
  • Over 400 reports from residents have been made to the Environment Line. Residents who have not already registered and believe their home is impacted can contact the EPA via the Environment Line on 131 555 so an assessment can be booked.
  • Around 90 independent clean-up personnel remain in the field assessing and cleaning up private homes and removing debris on a daily basis.

Resumption of community sport at Waratah Park

  • To ensure the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle temporarily suspended high impact activities including mowing and park maintenance, along with community sport at Waratah Park following the Wickham Wool Store fire. Several mowing trials were undertaken at the park to ensure that mowing could be safely conducted from a staff and community perspective given the potential presence of asbestos materials.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during each mowing trial and spot samples were taken from the equipment and machinery used. The air monitoring results from each of the three trials have been analysed, showing asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were also clear of any traces of asbestos.
  • We also engaged an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor to inspect the Waratah grandstand building including the roof and gutters, to check whether any asbestos fragments were present. The Assessor undertook a visual inspection and took dust swabs from key areas, and no asbestos was detected.
  • These trials and inspections have informed our risk assessment and decision making for the safe resumption of our mowing and park maintenance services, which will now resume as normal, with ongoing safe work practices. Community sport is also able to resume at Waratah Park as at 6 April.

Islington Park mowing trials and recommencement of community sport

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors. Following the fire, multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • So we could plan for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance, we undertook a series of mowing trials at the park to ensure that mowing could be safely conducted from a staff and community perspective given the potential presence of asbestos materials. These trials were held on the 22 March, 30 March and 5 April.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during each mowing trial and spot samples were taken from the equipment and machinery used before cleaning. The air monitoring results from each of the three trials have been analysed, showing asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were clear of any traces of asbestos. In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also clear of asbestos.
  • These trials and inspections have informed our risk assessment and decision making for the safe resumption of our mowing and park maintenance services, which will now resume as normal, with ongoing safe work practices.
  • Community sport is also able to resume at the Islington Park sporting ground from Monday 11 April.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.

    In the unlikely event that asbestos fragments are found, this should continue to be reported to City of Newcastle by phone 02 4974 2000 or by emailing wickhamfire@ncc.nsw.gov.au so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Recommencement of green bin collections

  • Collection of green bins within some areas of Wickham and Islington was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the Wickham Woolshed fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. During the suspension we collected and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted areas.
  • The licenced asbestos contractor began progressively emptying and cleaning green bins in the area where services were suspended from Monday 21 March. These specialist contractors emptied each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then cleaned the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring was undertaken during the collection period.
  • This was a much slower, more detailed process than regular green bin collection, so it took some time for the approximately 700 green bins in the area to go through this manual collection and cleaning process.
  • City of Newcastle has now undertaken a risk assessment for the re-commencement of regular green bin collection and determined that it is appropriate to recommence collection of green bins across most of the impacted areas. This began on Wednesday 6 April, aside from the areas outlined below.
  • Due to their proximity to the fire site and the ongoing clean-up efforts in the adjacent area, green bins will continue to be collected and cleaned by a licenced asbestos removal contractor in the following streets:
    • Norfolk Avenue, Islington
    • Roslyn Avenue, Islington
    • Milford Street, Islington
    • Annie Street (southern side between Milford Street and John Street), Wickham
    • Robert Street (between Norfolk Avenue and Milford Street), Islington.
  • We ask residents in these areas to continue to leave their green bin on the kerb so it can be accessed by our contractor. We appreciate your patience, and we will keep residents in this area updated on when regular collection will recommence.

Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Latest update (Thursday 7 April - 1.00pm)

  • Novocastrian Demolition Services has been engaged on behalf of the Wool Store building owner to commence works to remove asbestos containing debris from the roof of the remaining Wool Store building from 4 April. This work will involve the installation of a crane within the Wool Store site to access the roof of the remaining building and progressively clean the debris left from the fire. Progress will be weather dependent but is expected to take approximately two weeks to complete. For further infomation on these works and access to Milford Street visit the Milford Street update page.

Resumption of community sport at Waratah Park

  • To ensure the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle temporarily suspended high impact activities including mowing and park maintenance, along with community sport at Waratah Park following the Wickham Wool Store fire. Several mowing trials were undertaken at the park to ensure that mowing could be safely conducted from a staff and community perspective given the potential presence of asbestos materials.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during each mowing trial and spot samples were taken from the equipment and machinery used. The air monitoring results from each of the three trials have been analysed, showing asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were also clear of any traces of asbestos.
  • We also engaged an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor to inspect the Waratah grandstand building including the roof and gutters, to check whether any asbestos fragments were present. The Assessor undertook a visual inspection and took dust swabs from key areas, and no asbestos was detected.
  • These trials and inspections have informed our risk assessment and decision making for the safe resumption of our mowing and park maintenance services, which will now resume as normal, with ongoing safe work practices. Community sport is also able to resume at Waratah Park as at 6 April.

Islington Park mowing trials and recommencement of community sport

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors. Following the fire, multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • So we could plan for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance, we undertook a series of mowing trials at the park to ensure that mowing could be safely conducted from a staff and community perspective given the potential presence of asbestos materials. These trials were held on the 22 March, 30 March and 5 April.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during each mowing trial and spot samples were taken from the equipment and machinery used before cleaning. The air monitoring results from each of the three trials have been analysed, showing asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were clear of any traces of asbestos. In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also clear of asbestos.
  • These trials and inspections have informed our risk assessment and decision making for the safe resumption of our mowing and park maintenance services, which will now resume as normal, with ongoing safe work practices.
  • Community sport is also able to resume at the Islington Park sporting ground from Monday 11 April.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.

    In the unlikely event that asbestos fragments are found, this should continue to be reported to City of Newcastle by phone 02 4974 2000 or by emailing wickhamfire@ncc.nsw.gov.au so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Recommencement of green bin collections

  • Collection of green bins within some areas of Wickham and Islington was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the Wickham Woolshed fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. During the suspension we collected and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted areas.
  • The licenced asbestos contractor began progressively emptying and cleaning green bins in the area where services were suspended from Monday 21 March. These specialist contractors emptied each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then cleaned the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring was undertaken during the collection period.
  • This was a much slower, more detailed process than regular green bin collection, so it took some time for the approximately 700 green bins in the area to go through this manual collection and cleaning process.
  • City of Newcastle has now undertaken a risk assessment for the re-commencement of regular green bin collection and determined that it is appropriate to recommence collection of green bins across most of the impacted areas. This began on Wednesday 6 April, aside from the areas outlined below.
  • Due to their proximity to the fire site and the ongoing clean-up efforts in the adjacent area, green bins will continue to be collected and cleaned by a licenced asbestos removal contractor in the following streets:
    • Norfolk Avenue, Islington
    • Roslyn Avenue, Islington
    • Milford Street, Islington
    • Annie Street (southern side between Milford Street and John Street), Wickham
    • Robert Street (between Norfolk Avenue and Milford Street), Islington.
  • We ask residents in these areas to continue to leave their green bin on the kerb so it can be accessed by our contractor. We appreciate your patience, and we will keep residents in this area updated on when regular collection will recommence.

Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Wednesday 6 April - 10.00am

  • Novocastrian Demolition Services has been engaged on behalf of the Wool Store building owner to commence works to remove asbestos containing debris from the roof of the remaining Wool Store building from 4 April. This work will involve the installation of a crane within the Wool Store site to access the roof of the remaining building and progressively clean the debris left from the fire. Progress will be weather dependent but is expected to take approximately two weeks to complete. For further infomation on these works and access to Milford Street visit the Milford Street update page.

Resumption of community sport at Waratah Park

  • To ensure the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle temporarily suspended high impact activities including mowing and park maintenance, along with community sport at Waratah Park following the Wickham Wool Store fire. Several mowing trials were undertaken at the park to ensure that mowing could be safely conducted from a staff and community perspective given the potential presence of asbestos materials.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during each mowing trial and spot samples were taken from the equipment and machinery used. The air monitoring results from each of the three trials have been analysed, showing asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were also clear of any traces of asbestos.
  • We also engaged an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor to inspect the Waratah grandstand building including the roof and gutters, to check whether any asbestos fragments were present. The Assessor undertook a visual inspection and took dust swabs from key areas, and no asbestos was detected.
  • These trials and inspections have informed our risk assessment and decision making for the safe resumption of our mowing and park maintenance services, which will now resume as normal, with ongoing safe work practices. Community sport is also able to resume at Waratah Park as at 6 April.

Recommencement of green bin collections

  • Collection of green bins within some areas of Wickham and Islington was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the Wickham Woolshed fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. During the suspension we collected and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted areas.
  • The licenced asbestos contractor began progressively emptying and cleaning green bins in the area where services were suspended from Monday 21 March. These specialist contractors emptied each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then cleaned the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring was undertaken during the collection period.
  • This was a much slower, more detailed process than regular green bin collection, so it took some time for the approximately 700 green bins in the area to go through this manual collection and cleaning process.
  • City of Newcastle has now undertaken a risk assessment for the re-commencement of regular green bin collection and determined that it is appropriate to recommence collection of green bins across most of the impacted areas. The next scheduled collection day is today, Wednesday 6 April.
  • Due to their proximity to the fire site and the ongoing clean-up efforts in the adjacent area, green bins will continue to be collected and cleaned by a licenced asbestos removal contractor in the following streets:
    • Norfolk Avenue, Islington
    • Roslyn Avenue, Islington
    • Milford Street, Islington
    • Annie Street (southern side between Milford Street and John Street), Wickham
    • Robert Street (between Norfolk Avenue and Milford Street), Islington.
  • We ask residents in these areas to continue to leave their green bin on the kerb so it can be accessed by our contractor. We appreciate your patience, and we will keep residents in this area updated on when regular collection will recommence.

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors. Following the fire, multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Mowing trials

  • City of Newcastle is continuing planning for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • An initial mowing trial at Islington Park was successfully undertaken on 22 March. The focus of the trial was to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial involved mowing of a limited area on the main oval only – not the entire park.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before cleaning. The air monitoring results from the trial have been analysed which showed asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were clear of any traces of asbestos. In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also all clear of asbestos.
  • Given the success of the first mowing trial, a second mowing trial at Islington Park took place on Wednesday 30 March. The second trial was conducted under similar controlled conditions as the first trial, with spotters in place to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial which again showed no increase above normal background levels of asbestos fibres. Spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial and grass clippings samples also showed no traces of asbestos. City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial wore appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the task they were undertaking.
  • A third mowing trial took place yesterday, Tuesday 5 April. This was across the broader park, including the dog park. Air monitoring was again undertaken by a Licenced Asbestos Assessor.
  • Results from all of these trials will inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing and related services across the entire park.

Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Tuesday 6 April - 3.40pm

  • Novocastrian Demolition Services has been engaged on behalf of the Wool Store building owner to commence works to remove asbestos containing debris from the roof of the remaining Wool Store building from 4 April. This work will involve the installation of a crane within the Wool Store site to access the roof of the remaining building and progressively clean the debris left from the fire. Progress will be weather dependent but is expected to take approximately two weeks to complete. For further infomation on these works and access to Milford Street visit the Milford Street update page.

Recommencement of green bin collections

  • Collection of green bins within some areas of Wickham and Islington was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the Wickham Woolshed fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. During the suspension we collected and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted areas.
  • The licenced asbestos contractor began progressively emptying and cleaning green bins in the area where services were suspended from Monday 21 March. These specialist contractors emptied each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then cleaned the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring was undertaken during the collection period.
  • This was a much slower, more detailed process than regular green bin collection, so it took some time for the approximately 700 green bins in the area to go through this manual collection and cleaning process.
  • City of Newcastle has now undertaken a risk assessment for the re-commencement of regular green bin collection and determined that it is appropriate to recommence collection of green bins across most of the impacted areas. The next scheduled collection day is tomorrow, Wednesday 6 April.
  • Due to their proximity to the fire site and the ongoing clean-up efforts in the adjacent area, green bins will continue to be collected and cleaned by a licenced asbestos removal contractor in the following streets:
    • Norfolk Avenue, Islington
    • Roslyn Avenue, Islington
    • Milford Street, Islington
    • Annie Street (southern side between Milford Street and John Street), Wickham
    • Robert Street (between Norfolk Avenue and Milford Street), Islington.
  • We ask residents in these areas to continue to leave their green bin on the kerb so it can be accessed by our contractor. We appreciate your patience, and we will keep residents in this area updated on when regular collection will recommence.

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors. Following the fire, multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Mowing trials

  • City of Newcastle is continuing planning for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • An initial mowing trial at Islington Park was successfully undertaken on 22 March. The focus of the trial was to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial involved mowing of a limited area on the main oval only – not the entire park.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before cleaning. The air monitoring results from the trial have been analysed which showed asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were clear of any traces of asbestos. In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also all clear of asbestos.
  • Given the success of the first mowing trial, a second mowing trial at Islington Park took place on Wednesday 30 March. The second trial was conducted under similar controlled conditions as the first trial, with spotters in place to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial which again showed no increase above normal background levels of asbestos fibres. Spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial and grass clippings samples also showed no traces of asbestos. City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial wore appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the task they were undertaking.
  • A third mowing trial took place today, Tuesday 5 April. This was across the broader park, including the dog park. Air monitoring was again undertaken by a Licenced Asbestos Assessor.
  • Results from all of these trials will inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing and related services across the entire park.

Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Monday 4 April - 3.30pm

  • Novocastrian Demolition Services has been engaged on behalf of the Wool Store building owner to commence works to remove asbestos containing debris from the roof of the remaining Wool Store building from 4 April. This work will involve the installation of a crane within the Wool Store site to access the roof of the remaining building and progressively clean the debris left from the fire. Progress will be weather dependent but is expected to take approximately two weeks to complete. For further infomation on these works and access to Milford Street visit the Milford Street update page.

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed the following week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Mowing trials

  • City of Newcastle is continuing planning for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.An initial mowing trial at Islington Park was successfully undertaken on 22 March. The focus of the trial was to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial involved mowing of a limited area on the main oval only – not the entire park.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before cleaning. The air monitoring results from the trial have been analysed which showed asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were clear of any traces of asbestos. In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also all clear of asbestos.
  • Given the success of the first mowing trial, a second mowing trial at Islington Park took place on Wednesday 30 March. The second trial was conducted under similar controlled conditions as the first trial, with spotters in place to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial which again showed no increase above normal background levels of asbestos fibres. Spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial and grass clippings samples also showed no traces of asbestos. City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial wore appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the task they were undertaking.
  • A third mowing trial is planned for Tuesday 5 April. This will be across the broader park, including the dog park. Air monitoring will again be undertaken by a Licenced Asbestos Assessor.
  • Results from all of these trials will inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing and related services across the entire park.

Recommencement of green bin collection

  • Collection of green bins within some areas was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. We have taken and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle has engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to develop and undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted area.
  • For properties where bin collection was suspended, licenced asbestos contractors began progressively emptying and cleaning green bins from Monday 21 March.
  • These specialist contractors, with the appropriate PPE will empty each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then clean the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring will be undertaken during the collection period. Traffic management may be in place to restrict traffic in each street while collection is taking place.
  • This is a much slower, more detailed process than regular green bin collection, so will take some time to be completed.
  • Approximately 700 green bins will go through this manual collection and cleaning process. As of Thursday 31 March around 90% of these have been collected and cleaned, with heavy rain slowing progress.
  • If your green bin has not yet been collected please continue to leave it on the kerb so it can be accessed by our contractor. Contractors will not enter properties to access bins so it is important that your bin is on the kerb for collection. We appreciate your patience while our contractors make their way toward your street.

Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Friday 1 April - 2.30pm

  • Novocastrian Demolition Services (NDS) has been engaged on behalf of the Wool Store building owner to commence works to remove asbestos containing debris (ACD) from the roof of the remaining Wool Store building from 4 April. The asbestos clean-up works will involve the installation of a crane within the Wool Store site to access the roof of the remaining building and progressively clean the ACD left from the fire on 1 March 2022. Progress of the works will be weather dependent but is expected to take approximately two weeks to complete. For further infomation on these works and access to Milford Street visit the Milford Street update page.
  • It is reassuring that all air monitoring results collected since the fire have continued to show no asbestos fibres in the air above background levels that are normally present. The ongoing wet weather also helps prevent fibres from becoming airborne. However, continued rainfall may also impact and delay clean-up efforts. The air monitoring results are consistent with research that shows that airborne asbestos fibres during and after fires are not generated in significant quantities, and do not exceed typical background levels once the fire is extinguished.
  • Cleaning-up is a significant job as asbestos debris travelled quite a distance from the fire site and around 400 residents have reported possible debris on their properties via the EPA's Environment Line. Significant clean up of public streets, parks and footpaths has been undertaken. Clean up of residential properties is continuing, but it may take some time before every property has been reached.
  • If you have reported your property to the EPA, they will contact you shortly with advice or an assessor may contact you directly to organise a suitable time for inspection.
  • Public Works Advisory has deployed specialist teams to help clean-up the external areas of impacted properties. Their focus was first to send teams to homes closest to the fire and most heavily impacted by debris. Once the scope of works have been agreed with the property owner, teams of up to five specialists do an extensive environmental clean that is time intensive. In some situations, homes close to the fire site took three days to clean. As Public Works Advisory progress the clean-up of residential properties, teams are now cleaning affected properties further from the fire site. Clean ups are now taking around a day and a half to complete.
  • Demolition of the affected Wool Store buildings is complete with asbestos waste being safely transported to the local waste management facility.

Recommencement of green bin collection

  • Collection of green bins within some areas was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. We have taken and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle has engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to develop and undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted area.
  • For properties where bin collection was suspended, licenced asbestos contractors began progressively emptying and cleaning green bins from Monday 21 March.
  • These specialist contractors, with the appropriate PPE will empty each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then clean the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring will be undertaken during the collection period. Traffic management may be in place to restrict traffic in each street while collection is taking place.
  • This is a much slower, more detailed process than regular green bin collection, so will take some time to be completed.
  • Approximately 700 green bins will go through this manual collection and cleaning process. As of Thursday 31 March around 90% of these have been collected and cleaned, with heavy rain slowing progress.
  • Bins in the same area will also be collected by our Licensed Asbestos Removal Contractor for the scheduled green bin collection which was to occur on 23 March. This may mean your green bin will be collected twice by the contractor.
  • If your green bin has not yet been collected please continue to leave it on the kerb so it can be accessed by our contractor. Contractors will not enter properties to access bins so it is important that your bin is on the kerb for collection. We appreciate your patience while our contractors make their way toward your street.

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed the following week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • Testing of soil was undertaken at more than 20 locations as part of the quality control measures, including 12 within Islington Park. All samples have come back clear.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Second mowing trial - Wednesday 30 March

  • City of Newcastle is continuing planning for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • An initial mowing trial at Islington Park was successfully undertaken on 22 March. The focus of the trial was to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial involved mowing of a limited area on the main oval only – not the entire park.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before cleaning. The air monitoring results from the trial have been analysed which showed asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were clear of any traces of asbestos. In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also all clear of asbestos.
  • Given the success of the first mowing trial, a second mowing trial at Islington Park took place on Wednesday 30 March.
  • The second trial was conducted under similar controlled conditions as the first trial, with spotters in place to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial which again showed no increase above normal background levels of asbestos fibres. Spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial and grass clippings samples also showed no traces of asbestos.
  • City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial wore appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the task they were undertaking.
  • Results from both these trials will inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing and related services across the entire park.

​Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Thursday 31 March - 2.00pm

  • Novocastrian Demolition Services (NDS) has been engaged on behalf of the Wool Store building owner to commence works to remove asbestos containing debris (ACD) from the roof of the remaining Wool Store building from 4 April. The asbestos clean-up works will involve the installation of a crane within the Wool Store site to access the roof of the remaining building and progressively clean the ACD left from the fire on 1 March 2022. Progress of the works will be weather dependent but is expected to take approximately two weeks to complete. For further infomation on these works and access to Milford Street visit the Milford Street update page.
  • It is reassuring that all air monitoring results collected since the fire have continued to show no asbestos fibres in the air above background levels that are normally present. The ongoing wet weather also helps prevent fibres from becoming airborne. However, continued rainfall may also impact and delay clean-up efforts. The air monitoring results are consistent with research that shows that airborne asbestos fibres during and after fires are not generated in significant quantities, and do not exceed typical background levels once the fire is extinguished.
  • Cleaning-up is a significant job as asbestos debris travelled quite a distance from the fire site and around 400 residents have reported possible debris on their properties via the EPA's Environment Line. Significant clean up of public streets, parks and footpaths has been undertaken. Clean up of residential properties is continuing, but it may take some time before every property has been reached.
  • If you have reported your property to the EPA, they will contact you shortly with advice or an assessor may contact you directly to organise a suitable time for inspection.
  • Public Works Advisory has deployed specialist teams to help clean-up the external areas of impacted properties. Their focus was first to send teams to homes closest to the fire and most heavily impacted by debris. Once the scope of works have been agreed with the property owner, teams of up to five specialists do an extensive environmental clean that is time intensive. In some situations, homes close to the fire site took three days to clean. As Public Works Advisory progress the clean-up of residential properties, teams are now cleaning affected properties further from the fire site. Clean ups are now taking around a day and a half to complete.
  • Demolition of the affected Wool Store buildings is complete with asbestos waste being safely transported to the local waste management facility.

Recommencement of green bin collection

  • Collection of green bins within some areas was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. We have taken and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle has engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to develop and undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted area.
  • For properties where bin collection was suspended, licenced asbestos contractors began progressively emptying and cleaning green bins from Monday 21 March.
  • These specialist contractors, with the appropriate PPE will empty each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then clean the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring will be undertaken during the collection period. Traffic management may be in place to restrict traffic in each street while collection is taking place.
  • This is a much slower, more detailed process than regular green bin collection, so will take some time to be completed.
  • Approximately 700 green bins will go through this manual collection and cleaning process. As of Wednesday 30 March around 80% of these have been collected and cleaned, with heavy rain slowing progress. It is anticipated that the majority of bins will be completed this week.
  • Bins in the same area will also be collected by our Licensed Asbestos Removal Contractor for the scheduled green bin collection which was to occur on 23 March. This may mean your green bin will be collected twice by the contractor.
  • If your green bin has not yet been collected please continue to leave it on the kerb so it can be accessed by our contractor. Contractors will not enter properties to access bins so it is important that your bin is on the kerb for collection. We appreciate your patience while our contractors make their way toward your street.

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed the following week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • Testing of soil was undertaken at 23 locations, including 12 within Islington Park. All samples have come back clear.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Second mowing trial - Wednesday 30 March

  • City of Newcastle is continuing planning for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • An initial mowing trial at Islington Park was successfully undertaken on 22 March. The focus of the trial was to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial involved mowing of a limited area on the main oval only – not the entire park.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before cleaning. The air monitoring results from the trial have been analysed which showed asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were clear of any traces of asbestos. In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also all clear of asbestos.
  • Given the success of the first mowing trial, a second mowing trial at Islington Park took place yesterday (Wednesday 30 March).
  • The second trial was conducted under similar controlled conditions as the first trial, with spotters in place to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial. We are now awaiting results from this testing.
  • City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial wore appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the task they were undertaking.
  • Results from both these trials will inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing and related services across the entire park.

​Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Wednesday 30 March - 2.30pm

  • It is reassuring that all air monitoring results collected since the fire have continued to show no asbestos fibres in the air above background levels that are normally present. The ongoing wet weather also helps prevent fibres from becoming airborne. However, continued rainfall may also impact and delay clean-up efforts. The air monitoring results are consistent with research that shows that airborne asbestos fibres during and after fires are not generated in significant quantities, and do not exceed typical background levels once the fire is extinguished.
  • Public Works Advisory has been doing soil testing in areas close to the fire site and Islington Park. All tests have come back negative for asbestos fibres. You can keep up to date with the latest results and health information via the EPA’s website.
  • Cleaning-up is a significant job as asbestos debris travelled quite a distance from the fire site and around 400 residents have reported possible debris on their properties via the EPA's Environment Line. Significant clean up of public streets, parks and footpaths has been undertaken. Clean up of residential properties is continuing, but it may take some time before every property has been reached.
  • If you have reported your property to the EPA, they will contact you shortly with advice or an assessor may contact you directly to organise a suitable time for inspection.
  • Public Works Advisory has deployed specialist teams to help clean-up the external areas of impacted properties. Their focus was first to send teams to homes closest to the fire and most heavily impacted by debris. Once the scope of works have been agreed with the property owner, teams of up to five specialists do an extensive environmental clean that is time intensive. In some situations, homes close to the fire site took three days to clean. As Public Works Advisory progress the clean-up of residential properties, teams are now cleaning affected properties further from the fire site. Clean ups are now taking around a day and a half to complete.
  • Demolition of the affected Wool Store buildings is complete with asbestos waste being safely transported to the local waste management facility.

Recommencement of green bin collection

  • Collection of green bins within some areas was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. We have taken and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle has engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to develop and undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted area.
  • For properties where bin collection was suspended, licenced asbestos contractors began progressively emptying and cleaning green bins from Monday 21 March.
  • These specialist contractors, with the appropriate PPE will empty each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then clean the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring will be undertaken during the collection period. Traffic management may be in place to restrict traffic in each street while collection is taking place.
  • This is a much slower, more detailed process than regular green bin collection, so will take some time to be completed.
  • Approximately 700 green bins will go through this manual collection and cleaning process. As of Tuesday 29 March around 70% of these have been collected and cleaned, with heavy rain slowing progress last week. Contractors are continuing work this week and it is anticipated that the majority of bins will be completed this week.
  • Bins in the same area will also be collected by our Licensed Asbestos Removal Contractor for the scheduled green bin collection which was to occur on 23 March. This may mean your green bin will be collected twice by the contractor.
  • If your green bin has not yet been collected please continue to leave it on the kerb so it can be accessed by our contractor. Contractors will not enter properties to access bins so it is important that your bin is on the kerb for collection. We appreciate your patience while our contractors make their way toward your street.

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed the following week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • Testing of soil was undertaken at 23 locations, including 12 within Islington Park. All samples have come back clear.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Second mowing trial - Wednesday 30 March

  • City of Newcastle is continuing planning for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • An initial mowing trial at Islington Park was successfully undertaken on 22 March. The focus of the trial was to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial involved mowing of a limited area on the main oval only – not the entire park.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before cleaning. The air monitoring results from the trial have been analysed which showed asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were clear of any traces of asbestos. In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also all clear of asbestos.
  • Given the success of the first mowing trial, a second mowing trial at Islington Park took place today (Wednesday 30 March).
  • The second trial was conducted under similar controlled conditions as the first trial, with spotters in place to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial. We are now awaiting results from this testing.
  • City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial wore appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the task they were undertaking.
  • Results from both these trials will inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing and related services across the entire park.

​Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Tuesday 29 March - 9.30am

  • It is reassuring that all air monitoring results in over 650 samples collected since the fire have continued to show no asbestos fibres in the air above background levels that are normally present. The ongoing wet weather also helps prevent fibres from becoming airborne. However, continued rainfall may also impact and delay clean-up efforts. The air monitoring results are consistent with research that shows that airborne asbestos fibres during and after fires are not generated in significant quantities, and do not exceed typical background levels once the fire is extinguished.
  • Public Works Advisory has been doing soil testing in areas close to the fire site and Islington Park. All tests have come back negative for asbestos fibres. You can keep up to date with the latest results and health information via the EPA’s website.
  • Cleaning-up is a significant job as asbestos debris travelled quite a distance from the fire site and around 400 residents have reported possible debris on their properties via the EPA's Environment Line. Significant clean up of public streets, parks and footpaths has been undertaken. Clean up of residential properties is continuing, but it may take some time before every property has been reached.
  • If you have reported your property to the EPA, they will contact you shortly with advice or an assessor may contact you directly to organise a suitable time for inspection.
  • Public Works Advisory has deployed specialist teams to help clean-up the external areas of impacted properties. Their focus was first to send teams to homes closest to the fire and most heavily impacted by debris. Once the scope of works have been agreed with the property owner, teams of up to five specialists do an extensive environmental clean that is time intensive. In some situations, homes close to the fire site took three days to clean. As Public Works Advisory progress the clean-up of residential properties, teams are now cleaning affected properties further from the fire site. Clean ups are now taking around a day and a half to complete.
  • Demolition of the affected Wool Store buildings is complete with asbestos waste being safely transported to the local waste management facility.

Recommencement of green bin collection

  • Collection of green bins within some areas was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. We have taken and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle has engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to develop and undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted area.
  • For properties where bin collection was suspended, licenced asbestos contractors began progressively emptying and cleaning green bins from Monday 21 March.
  • These specialist contractors, with the appropriate PPE will empty each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then clean the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring will be undertaken during the collection period. Traffic management may be in place to restrict traffic in each street while collection is taking place.
  • This is a much slower, more detailed process than regular green bin collection, so will take some time to be completed.
  • Approximately 700 green bins will go through this manual collection and cleaning process. As of Monday 28 March over half of these have been collected and cleaned, with heavy rain slowing progress last week. Contractors are continuing work this week and it is anticipated that the majority of bins will be completed this week.
  • Bins in the same area will also be collected by our Licensed Asbestos Removal Contractor for the scheduled green bin collection which was to occur on 23 March. This may mean your green bin will be collected twice by the contractor.
  • If your green bin has not yet been collected please continue to leave it on the kerb so it can be accessed by our contractor. Contractors will not enter properties to access bins so it is important that your bin is on the kerb for collection. We appreciate your patience while our contractors make their way toward your street.

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed the following week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • Testing of soil was undertaken at 23 locations, including 12 within Islington Park. All samples have come back clear.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Second planned mowing trial - Wednesday 30 March (weather dependent)

  • City of Newcastle is continuing planning for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • An initial mowing trial at Islington Park was successfully undertaken on 22 March. The focus of the trial was to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial involved mowing of a limited area on the main oval only – not the entire park.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before cleaning. The air monitoring results from the trial have been analysed which showed asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were clear of any traces of asbestos. In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also all clear of asbestos.
  • Given the success of the first mowing trial, a second mowing trial at Islington Park is scheduled to occur on Wednesday 30 March, subject to suitable weather conditions.
  • The second trial will be conducted under the same controlled conditions as the first trial, where the oval and surrounding area including the public toilets and playground will be closed and taped off to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Air monitoring will be undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial.
  • All clippings from the second trial will again be treated as asbestos waste and removed by a licensed asbestos contractor.
  • City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial will wear appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the task they are undertaking.
  • Results from both these trials will inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing and related services across the entire park.

​Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Public-Domain-Clearance-Map_20220324.jpg

Monday 28 March - 12.30pm

  • It is reassuring that all air monitoring results in over 650 samples collected since the fire have continued to show no asbestos fibres in the air above background levels that are normally present. The ongoing wet weather also helps prevent fibres from becoming airborne. However, continued rainfall may also impact and delay clean-up efforts. The air monitoring results are consistent with research that shows that airborne asbestos fibres during and after fires are not generated in significant quantities, and do not exceed typical background levels once the fire is extinguished.
  • Public Works Advisory has been doing soil testing in areas close to the fire site and Islington Park. All tests have come back negative for asbestos fibres. You can keep up to date with the latest results and health information via the EPA’s website.
  • Cleaning-up is a significant job as asbestos debris travelled quite a distance from the fire site and around 400 residents have reported possible debris on their properties via the EPA's Environment Line. Significant clean up of public streets, parks and footpaths has been undertaken. Clean up of residential properties is continuing, but it may take some time before every property has been reached.
  • If you have reported your property to the EPA, they will contact you shortly with advice or an assessor may contact you directly to organise a suitable time for inspection.
  • Public Works Advisory has deployed specialist teams to help clean-up the external areas of impacted properties. Their focus was first to send teams to homes closest to the fire and most heavily impacted by debris. Once the scope of works have been agreed with the property owner, teams of up to five specialists do an extensive environmental clean that is time intensive. In some situations, homes close to the fire site took three days to clean. As Public Works Advisory progress the clean-up of residential properties, teams are now cleaning affected properties further from the fire site. Clean ups are now taking around a day and a half to complete.
  • Demolition of the affected Wool Store buildings is complete with asbestos waste being safely transported to the local waste management facility.

Recommencement of green bin collection

  • Collection of green bins within some areas was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. We have taken and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle has engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to develop and undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted area.
  • For properties where bin collection was suspended, licenced asbestos contractors began progressively emptying and cleaning green bins from Monday 21 March.
  • These specialist contractors, with the appropriate PPE will empty each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then clean the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring will be undertaken during the collection period. Traffic management may be in place to restrict traffic in each street while collection is taking place.
  • This is a much slower, more detailed process than regular green bin collection, so will take some time to be completed.
  • Approximately 700 green bins will go through this manual collection and cleaning process. As of Friday 25 March around half of these have been collected and cleaned, with heavy rain slowing progress last week. Contractors are continuing work this week and it is anticipated that the majority of bins will be completed this week.
  • Bins in the same area will also be collected by our Licensed Asbestos Removal Contractor for the scheduled green bin collection which was to occur on 23 March. This may mean your green bin will be collected twice by the contractor.
  • If your green bin has not yet been collected please continue to leave it on the kerb so it can be accessed by our contractor. Contractors will not enter properties to access bins so it is important that your bin is on the kerb for collection. We appreciate your patience while our contractors make their way toward your street.

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed the following week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • Testing of soil was undertaken at 23 locations, including 12 within Islington Park. All samples have come back clear.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Successful mowing trial

  • City of Newcastle is now planning ahead for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • Crews conducted a safe mowing trial in the sporting oval area of Islington Park on 22 March. The focus of the trial was to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial involved mowing of a limited area on the main oval only – not the entire park.
  • The oval and surrounding area including the public toilets and playground were closed and taped off to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Prior to the trial commencing, a walk-through took place with licenced asbestos removalists to identify and remove any visible fragments of asbestos materials in the area to be mowed.
  • As a precaution, catchers were used on mowing equipment and all clippings were treated as asbestos waste and removed by a licensed asbestos contractor.
  • All City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial wore appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the activity they were undertaking.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before cleaning.
  • The air monitoring results from the trial have been analysed which showed asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were also clear of any traces of asbestos.
  • In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also all clear of asbestos.
  • The results of the air monitoring and sampling will determine the effectiveness of the mowing trial and inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing across the park.
  • A similar trial was successfully undertaken the previous week at Waratah Park, where all air monitoring and sampling results from tests taken during the trial came back clear.

​Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Public-Domain-Clearance-Map_20220324.jpg

Friday 25 March - 5.00pm

  • It is reassuring that all air monitoring results in over 650 samples collected since the fire have continued to show no asbestos fibres in the air above background levels that are normally present. The ongoing wet weather also helps prevent fibres from becoming airborne. However, continued rainfall may also impact and delay clean-up efforts. The air monitoring results are consistent with research that shows that airborne asbestos fibres during and after fires are not generated in significant quantities, and do not exceed typical background levels once the fire is extinguished.
  • Public Works Advisory has been doing soil testing in areas close to the fire site and Islington Park. All tests have come back negative for asbestos fibres. You can keep up to date with the latest results and health information via the EPA’s website.
  • Cleaning-up is a significant job as asbestos debris travelled quite a distance from the fire site and around 400 residents have reported possible debris on their properties via the EPA's Environment Line. Significant clean up of public streets, parks and footpaths has been undertaken. Clean up of residential properties is continuing, but it may take some time before every property has been reached.
  • If you have reported your property to the EPA, they will contact you shortly with advice or an assessor may contact you directly to organise a suitable time for inspection.
  • Public Works Advisory has deployed specialist teams to help clean-up the external areas of impacted properties. Their focus was first to send teams to homes closest to the fire and most heavily impacted by debris. Once the scope of works have been agreed with the property owner, teams of up to five specialists do an extensive environmental clean that is time intensive. In some situations, homes close to the fire site took three days to clean. As Public Works Advisory progress the clean-up of residential properties, teams are now cleaning affected properties further from the fire site. Clean ups are now taking around a day and a half to complete.
  • Demolition of the affected Wool Store buildings is complete with asbestos waste being safely transported to the local waste management facility.

Recommencement of green bin collection

  • Collection of green bins within some areas was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. We have taken and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle has engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to develop and undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted area.
  • For properties where bin collection was suspended, licenced asbestos contractors will progressively empty and clean green bins over the course of several days from Monday 21 March including the scheduled regular green bin collection day on Wednesday 23 March. Contractors will not enter properties to access bins so it is important that your bin is on the kerb for collection.
  • These specialist contractors, with the appropriate PPE will empty each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then clean the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring will be undertaken during the collection period. Traffic management may be in place to restrict traffic in each street while collection is taking place.

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed the following week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • Testing of soil was undertaken at 23 locations, including 12 within Islington Park. All samples have come back clear.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Successful mowing trial

  • City of Newcastle is now planning ahead for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • Crews conducted a safe mowing trial in the sporting oval area of Islington Park on 22 March. The focus of the trial was to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial involved mowing of a limited area on the main oval only – not the entire park.
  • The oval and surrounding area including the public toilets and playground were closed and taped off to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Prior to the trial commencing, a walk-through took place with licenced asbestos removalists to identify and remove any visible fragments of asbestos materials in the area to be mowed.
  • As a precaution, catchers were used on mowing equipment and all clippings were treated as asbestos waste and removed by a licensed asbestos contractor.
  • All City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial wore appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the activity they were undertaking.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before cleaning.
  • The air monitoring results from the trial have been analysed which showed asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were also clear of any traces of asbestos.
  • In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also all clear of asbestos.
  • The results of the air monitoring and sampling will determine the effectiveness of the mowing trial and inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing across the park.
  • A similar trial was successfully undertaken the previous week at Waratah Park, where all air monitoring and sampling results from tests taken during the trial came back clear.

​Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Public-Domain-Clearance-Map_20220324.jpg

Thursday 24 March - 3:10pm

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed the following week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean-up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • Testing of soil was undertaken last week at 23 locations, including 12 within Islington Park. All samples have come back clear.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Successful mowing trial

  • City of Newcastle is now planning ahead for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • Crews conducted a safe mowing trial in the sporting oval area of Islington Park on 22 March. The focus of the trial was to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial involved mowing of a limited area on the main oval only – not the entire park.
  • The oval and surrounding area including the public toilets and playground were closed and taped off to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Prior to the trial commencing, a walk-through took place with licenced asbestos removalists to identify and remove any visible fragments of asbestos materials in the area to be mowed.
  • As a precaution, catchers were used on mowing equipment and all clippings were treated as asbestos waste and removed by a licensed asbestos contractor.
  • All City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial wore appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the activity they were undertaking.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before cleaning.
  • The air monitoring results from the trial have been analysed which showed asbestos fibre concentrations below the limit threshold of 0.01 fibres/ml of air for all samples – that is, no increase above normal background levels. Dust swabs of the mower used for the trial were also clear of any traces of asbestos.
  • In addition, dust swabs taken from the children’s playground slide, swing set and jungle gym were also all clear of asbestos.
  • The results of the air monitoring and sampling will determine the effectiveness of the mowing trial and inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing across the park.
  • A similar trial was successfully undertaken last week at Waratah Park, where all air monitoring and sampling results from tests taken during the trial came back clear.

Recommencement of green waste collection

  • Collection of green bins within some areas was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. We have taken and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle has engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to develop and undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted area.
  • For properties where bin collection was suspended, licenced asbestos contractors will progressively empty and clean green bins over the course of several days from Monday 21 March including the scheduled regular green bin collection day yesterday, Wednesday 23 March. Contractors will not enter properties to access bins so it is important that your bin is on the kerb for collection.
  • These specialist contractors, with the appropriate PPE will empty each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then clean the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring will be undertaken during the collection period. Traffic management may be in place to restrict traffic in each street while collection is taking place.

​Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Public-Domain-Clearance-Map_20220324.jpg

Wednesday 23 March - 12.15pm

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed the following week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • Testing of soil was undertaken last week at 23 locations, including 12 within Islington Park. All samples have come back clear.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Safe mowing trial

  • City of Newcastle is now planning ahead for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • Crews were on-site to conduct a mowing trial in the sporting oval area of Islington Park yesterday. The focus of the trial is to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial involved mowing of a limited area only – not the entire park.
  • The oval and surrounding area including the public toilets and playground were closed and taped off to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Prior to the trial commencing, a walk-through took place with licenced asbestos removalists to identify and remove any visible fragments of asbestos materials in the area to be mowed.
  • Catchers were used on mowing equipment, and all clippings safely disposed of into a plastic lined truck and sealed prior to transportation.
  • All City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial wore appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the activity they were undertaking.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before cleaning. The results of the air monitoring and sampling will determine the effectiveness of the mowing trial and inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing across the park.
  • A similar trial was successfully undertaken last week at Waratah Park, where all air monitoring and sampling results from tests taken during the trial came back clear.

Recommencement of green waste collection

  • Collection of green bins within some areas was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. We have taken and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle has engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to develop and undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted area.
  • For properties where bin collection was suspended, licenced asbestos contractors will progressively empty and clean green bins over the course of several days from Monday 21 March. Contractors will not enter properties to access bins so it is important that your bin is on the kerb for collection.
  • The next scheduled regular green bin collection day is on Wednesday 23 March. These bins will also be collected by a licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor.
  • These specialist contractors, with the appropriate PPE will empty each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then clean the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring will be undertaken during the collection period. Traffic management may be in place to restrict traffic in each street while collection is taking place.

​Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Tuesday 22 March - 1.00pm

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed the following week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • Testing of soil was undertaken last week at 23 locations, including 12 within Islington Park. All samples have come back clear.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Safe mowing trial today

  • City of Newcastle is now planning ahead for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • Today crews were on-site to conduct a mowing trial in the sporting oval area of Islington Park. The focus of the trial is to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial will involve mowing of a limited area only – not the entire park.
  • The oval and surrounding area including the public toilets and playground were closed and taped off to prevent public access during the trial.Prior to the trial commencing, a walk-through took place with licenced asbestos removalists to identify and remove any visible fragments of asbestos materials in the area to be mowed.
  • Catchers were used on mowing equipment, and all clippings safely disposed of into a plastic lined truck and sealed prior to transportation. All City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial wore appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the activity they were undertaking.
  • Air monitoring was undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before cleaning. The results of the air monitoring and sampling will determine the effectiveness of the mowing trial and inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing across the park.
  • A similar trial was successfully undertaken last week at Waratah Park, where all air monitoring and sampling results from tests taken during the trial came back clear.

Recommencement of green waste collection

  • Collection of green bins within some areas was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. We have taken and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle has engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to develop and undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted area.
  • For properties where bin collection was suspended, licenced asbestos contractors will progressively empty and clean green bins over the course of several days from Monday 21 March. Contractors will not enter properties to access bins so it is important that your bin is on the kerb for collection.
  • The next scheduled regular green bin collection day is on Wednesday 23 March. These bins will also be collected by a licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor from Wednesday.
  • These specialist contractors, with the appropriate PPE will empty each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then clean the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring will be undertaken during the collection period. Traffic management may be in place to restrict traffic in each street while collection is taking place.​

Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Monday 21 March - 11.30am

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed the following week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • Testing of soil was undertaken last week at 23 locations, including 12 within Islington Park. All samples have come back clear.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • Clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Safe mowing trial to commence 22 March

  • City of Newcastle is now planning ahead for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • On Tuesday morning crews will be on-site to conduct a mowing trial in the sporting oval area of Islington Park. The focus of the trial is to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial will involve mowing of a limited area only – not the entire park.
  • The oval and surrounding area including the public toilets and playground will be closed and taped off to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Prior to the trial commencing, a walk-through will take place with licenced asbestos removalists to identify and remove any visible fragments of asbestos materials in the area to be mowed.
  • Catchers will be used on mowing equipment, and all clippings will be safely disposed of into a plastic lined truck and sealed prior to transportation. A fine mist water spray will be utilised if required to keep clippings damp.
  • All City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial will wear appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the activity they are undertaking.
  • Air monitoring will be undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples will be taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before it is cleaned. The results of the air monitoring and sampling will determine the effectiveness of the mowing trial and inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing across the park.
  • A similar trial was successfully undertaken last week at Waratah Park, where all air monitoring and sampling results from tests taken during the trial came back clear.

Recommencement of green waste collection

  • Collection of green bins within some areas was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. We have taken and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle has engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to develop and undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted area.
  • For properties where bin collection was suspended, licenced asbestos contractors will progressively empty and clean green bins over the course of several days from Monday 21 March. Contractors will not enter properties to access bins so it is important that your bin is on the kerb for collection.
  • The next scheduled regular green bin collection day is on Wednesday 23 March. These bins will also be collected by a licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor from Wednesday.
  • These specialist contractors, with the appropriate PPE will empty each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then clean the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring will be undertaken during the collection period. Traffic management may be in place to restrict traffic in each street while collection is taking place.

​Cleaning of roads and laneways

  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Friday 18 March - 4.30pm

Islington Park update

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed last week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.
  • Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.
  • Testing of soil has been undertaken this week at 23 locations, including 12 within Islington Park. All samples have come back clear.
  • It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.
  • This week, clean-up crews have been conducting visual inspections and ongoing cleaning on a daily basis due to recontamination at the park.
  • Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

Safe mowing trial to commence 22 March

  • City of Newcastle is now planning ahead for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.
  • On Tuesday morning crews will be on-site to conduct a mowing trial in the sporting oval area of Islington Park. The focus of the trial is to ensure mowing can safely be conducted from a staff and community perspective. The trial will involve mowing of a limited area only – not the entire park.
  • The oval and surrounding area including the public toilets and playground will be closed and taped off to prevent public access during the trial.
  • Prior to the trial commencing, a walk-through will take place with licenced asbestos removalists to identify and remove any visible fragments of asbestos materials in the area to be mowed.
  • Catchers will be used on mowing equipment, and all clippings will be safely disposed of into a plastic lined truck and sealed prior to transportation. A fine mist water spray will be utilised if required to keep clippings damp.
  • All City of Newcastle staff and others involved in the trial will wear appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) based on the activity they are undertaking.
  • Air monitoring will be undertaken during the mowing trial and spot samples will be taken from the equipment and machinery used in the trial before it is cleaned. The results of the air monitoring and sampling will determine the effectiveness of the mowing trial and inform safe planning for an eventual resumption of mowing across the park.
  • A similar trial was successfully undertaken earlier this week at Waratah Park, where all air monitoring and sampling results from tests taken during the trial came back clear.

Recommencement of green waste collection

  • Collection of green bins within some areas was temporarily suspended on 9 March to ensure that the risk of potentially contaminated materials within the green waste as a result of the fire could be appropriately assessed prior to collection, transportation, and processing at the Summerhill Waste Management Centre. Over the last week we have taken and tested samples from bins in a range of locations across this area. Asbestos was found to be present in only a small number of these bins.
  • To maintain the safety of the community and our staff, City of Newcastle has engaged a Licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor to develop and undertake a safe process for the collection of green bins across the impacted area.
  • For properties where bin collection was suspended, licenced asbestos contractors will progressively empty and clean green bins over the course of several days from Monday 21 March. Contractors will not enter properties to access bins so it is important that your bin is on the kerb for collection.
  • The next scheduled regular green bin collection day is on Wednesday 23 March. These bins will also be collected by a licenced Asbestos Removal Contractor from Wednesday.
  • These specialist contractors, with the appropriate PPE will empty each bin into secured, plastic lined trucks with dust suppression measures in place, and then clean the inside and outside of the bin before replacing it on the kerb. To ensure safety for these contractors and the community, air monitoring will be undertaken during the collection period. Traffic management may be in place to restrict traffic in each street while collection is taking place.

Friday 18 March - 8.45am

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed last week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.

    Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.

    It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.

    We had reports on Tuesday 15 March from residents regarding fragments found in the carpark area. Specialist asbestos contractors re-inspected the park and cleaned areas in the vicinity of the carpark and public toilets.

    Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

    City of Newcastle is currently planning for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance. Mowing will resume once it can be safely undertaken to ensure the safety of the community and our staff.

  • Testing of soil has been undertaken this week at 23 locations, including 12 within Islington Park. All samples have come back clear.
  • Since the fire, no asbestos particles have been detected by air monitors around the area. Air monitoring will continue throughout the clean-up. More detailed information on air monitoring results is available.
  • Collection of green waste within the Islington and surrounding areas is delayed. Please continue to leave your green lid bin on the kerbside and services will recommence in these areas as soon as possible.

Wednesday 16 March - 10.15am

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public on Monday 14 March following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed last week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.

    Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.

    It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.

    We had reports on Tuesday 15 March from residents regarding fragments found in the carpark area. Specialist asbestos contractors re-inspected the park yesteday and cleaned areas in the vicinity of the carpark and public toilets.

    Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

    City of Newcastle is currently planning for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance. Mowing will resume once it can be safely undertaken to ensure the safety of the community and our staff.

  • Since the fire, no asbestos particles have been detected by air monitors around the area. Air monitoring will continue throughout the clean-up. More detailed information on air monitoring results is available.
  • A public meeting was held on Friday night at the Gallipoli Legion Club, 3 Beaumont Street, Hamilton. Visit Tim Crakanthorp MP's Facebook page to watch a recording of this meeting if you were unable to attend.
  • Residents are invited to attend community drop-in sessions this week at the Goodlife Church in Wickham. These will be held today, Wednesday 16th March, between 11am and 1pm, and Thursday 17th March between 4pm and 6.30pm.
  • Collection of green waste within the Islington and surrounding areas is delayed. Please continue to leave your green lid bin on the kerbside and services will recommence in these areas as soon as possible.
  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

Public-Domain-Clearance-16-March-2022-AM.jpgKEY:

  • Cleared streets are green.
  • Cleaned streets are blue and waiting for clearance from an asbestos specialist.
  • Streets we are planning to clean are yellow.
  • Streets undergoing cleaning are orange.

Tuesday 15 March - 5.00pm

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public yesterday morning following clearance by independent assessors on Sunday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed last week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.

    Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres.

    It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be reintroduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees.

    We had reports yesterday from residents regarding fragments found in the carpark area. Specialist asbestos contractors re-inspected the park today and cleaned areas in the vicinity of the carpark and public toilets.

    Further findings of fragments should continue to be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

    City of Newcastle is currently planning for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance. Mowing will resume once it can be safely undertaken to ensure the safety of the community and our staff.

  • Since the fire, no asbestos particles have been detected by air monitors around the area. Air monitoring will continue throughout the clean-up. More detailed information on air monitoring results is available.
  • A public meeting was held on Friday night at the Gallipoli Legion Club, 3 Beaumont Street, Hamilton. Visit Tim Crakanthorp MP's Facebook page to watch a recording of this meeting if you were unable to attend.
  • Residents are invited to attend community drop-in sessions this week at the Goodlife Church in Wickham. These will be held on Wednesday 16th March between 11am and 1pm, and Thursday 17th March between 4pm and 6.30pm.
  • Collection of green waste within the Islington and surrounding areas is delayed. Please continue to leave your green lid bin on the kerbside and services will recommence in these areas as soon as possible.
  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

KEY:

  • Cleared streets are green.
  • Cleaned streets are blue and waiting for clearance from an asbestos specialist.
  • Streets we are planning to clean are yellow.
  • Streets undergoing cleaning are orange.

Monday 14 March - 2pm

  • Islington Park was re-opened to the public this morning following clearance by independent assessors yesterday. Multiple specialist asbestos crews were deployed last week to clean the park. These crews removed fragments of asbestos containing materials (ACM) from grassed areas, gardens, the sporting oval, the carpark, bike paths, the playground, skate bowl and around the amenities building. High traffic areas such as footpaths and the playground were also cleaned with HEPA (high efficiency particulate arrestance) vacuums.

    Following the clean-up, an independent Licenced Asbestos Assessor inspected all areas of the park and found no visible asbestos remaining, allowing for a clearance certificate to be issued on Sunday 13 March. Air monitoring was undertaken during the clean up and also as part of the clearance inspection – with all results coming back clear of airborne asbestos fibres. Now that clearance has been issued, City of Newcastle will plan for the safe resumption of services such as mowing and ongoing park maintenance.

    It is important to remember that as with other areas that have been cleaned and given clearance, it is possible for the occasional fragment to be introduced into the area from vehicles or falling from trees. Further findings of fragments should be reported to the EPA's environment line on 131 555 so that the area can be listed for inspection and re-cleaning if necessary.

  • Since the fire, no asbestos particles have been detected by air monitors around the area. Air monitoring will continue throughout the clean-up. More detailed information on air monitoring results is available.
  • EPA, Fire and Rescue NSW, Public Works and the City of Newcastle are working together to enable residents to return to their homes as soon as possible. The clean-up will continue to focus first on homes and public areas that have been most affected by debris.
  • A public meeting was held on Friday night at the Gallipoli Legion Club, 3 Beaumont Street, Hamilton. Visit Tim Crackanthorp MP's Facebook page to watch a recording of this meeting if you were unable to attend.
  • Residents are invited to attend community drop-in sessions this week at the Goodlife Church in Wickham. These will be held on Wednesday 16th March between 11am and 1pm, and Thursday 17th March between 4pm and 6.30pm.
  • Collection of green waste within the Islington and surrounding areas is delayed. Please continue to leave your green lid bin on the kerbside and services will recommence in these areas as soon as possible.
  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

KEY:

  • Cleared streets are green.
  • Cleaned streets are blue and waiting for clearance from an asbestos specialist.
  • Streets we are planning to clean are yellow.
  • Streets undergoing cleaning are orange.

Sunday 13 March - 2pm

  • Cleaning has progressed in both Islington Park and Waratah Park. It is anticipated that these two parks will be open to the public early next week, subject to final clearance.
  • The safety of residents is paramount as the clean-up progresses following the fire at the Wickham Wool Store.
  • Since the fire, no asbestos particles have been detected by air monitors around the area. Air monitoring will continue throughout the clean-up. More detailed information on air monitoring results is available.
  • EPA, Fire and Rescue NSW, Public Works and the City of Newcastle are working together to enable residents to return to their homes as soon as possible. The clean-up will continue to focus first on homes and public areas that have been most affected by debris.
  • A public meeting was held on Friday night at the Gallipoli Legion Club, 3 Beaumont Street, Hamilton. Visit Tim Crackanthorp MP's Facebook page to watch a recording of this meeting if you were unable to attend.
  • Collection of green waste within the Islington and surrounding areas is delayed. Please continue to leave your green lid bin on the kerbside and services will recommence in these areas as soon as possible.
  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

KEY:

  • Cleared streets are green.
  • Cleaned streets are blue and waiting for clearance from an asbestos specialist.
  • Streets we are planning to clean are yellow.
  • Streets undergoing cleaning are orange.

Saturday 12 March - 11.00am

  • The safety of residents is paramount as the clean-up progresses following the fire at the Wickham Wool Store.
  • Since the fire, no asbestos particles have been detected by air monitors around the area. Air monitoring will continue throughout the clean-up. More detailed information on air monitoring results is available.
  • EPA, Fire and Rescue NSW, Public Works and the City of Newcastle are working together to enable residents to return to their homes as soon as possible. The clean-up will continue to focus first on homes and public areas that have been most affected by debris.
  • A public meeting was held last night at the Gallipoli Legion Club, 3 Beaumont Street, Hamilton. Visit Tim Crackanthorp MP's Facebook page to watch a recording of this meeting if you were unable to attend.
  • Collection of green waste within the Islington and surrounding areas is delayed. Please continue to leave your green lid bin on the kerbside and services will recommence in these areas as soon as possible.
  • Clean-up of roadways and laneways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

KEY:

  • Cleared streets are green.
  • Cleaned streets are blue and waiting for clearance from an asbestos specialist.
  • Streets we are planning to clean are yellow.
  • Streets undergoing cleaning are orange.

Friday 11 March - 11.30am

  • The safety of residents is paramount as the clean-up progresses following the fire at the Wickham Wool Store.
  • Since the fire, no asbestos particles have been detected by air monitors around the area. Air monitoring will continue throughout the clean-up. More detailed information on air monitoring results is available.
  • The Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW), Public Works and the City of Newcastle are working together to enable residents to return to their homes as soon as possible. The clean-up will continue to focus first on homes and public areas that have been most affected by debris.
  • A public meeting will be tonight at 6pm at the Gallipoli Legion Club, 3 Beaumont Street, Hamilton. This will be an opportunity to find out more about the response and ask questions. Follow Tim Crackanthorp MP's Facebook page for further details on this meeting.
  • Collection of green waste within the Islington and surrounding areas may be delayed. Please continue to leave your green lid bin on the kerbside and services will recommence in these areas as soon as possible.
  • Clean-up of roadways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Yesterday's wind may have moved material in the area. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

KEY:

  • Completed streets are green.
  • Cleaned streets are blue and waiting for clearance from an asbestos specialist.
  • Streets we are planning to clean are yellow.
  • Streets undergoing cleaning are orange.

Thursday 10 March - 1.30pm

  • The safety of residents is paramount as the clean-up progresses following the fire at the Wickham Wool Store.
  • Since the fire, no asbestos particles have been detected by air monitors around the area. Air monitoring will continue throughout the clean-up.
  • The Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW), Public Works and the City of Newcastle are working together to enable residents to return to their homes as soon as possible. The clean-up will continue to focus first on homes and public areas that have been most affected by debris.
  • A public meeting will be held at 6pm this Friday at the Gallipoli Legion Club, 3 Beaumont Street, Hamilton. This will be an opportunity to find out more about the response and ask questions. Follow Tim Crackanthorp MP's Facebook page for further details on this meeting.
  • Collection of green waste within the Islington and surrounding areas may be delayed. Please continue to leave your green lid bin on the kerbside and services will recommence in these areas as soon as possible.
  • Clean-up of roadways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Yesterday's wind may have moved material in the area. Please call the EPA Hotline on 131 555 to report any newly identified fragments.
  • This map will be updated each morning to indicate progress. Click to view larger version of map (PDF). The next map update will be shared tomorrow (Friday 11 March).

KEY:

  • Completed streets are green.
  • Cleaned streets are blue and waiting for clearance from an asbestos specialist.
  • Streets we are planning to clean are yellow.
  • Streets undergoing cleaning are orange.

Wednesday 9 March - 5.00pm

  • The safety of residents is paramount as the clean-up progresses following the fire at the Wickham Wool Store.
  • Since the fire, no asbestos particles have been detected by air monitors around Wickham. Air monitoring will continue throughout the clean-up.
  • The Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW), Public Works and the City of Newcastle are working together to enable residents to return to their homes as soon as possible. The clean-up will continue to focus first on homes and public areas that have been most affected by debris.
  • A public meeting will be held at 6pm this Friday at the Gallipoli Legion Club, 3 Beaumont Street, Hamilton. This will be an opportunity to find out more about the response and ask questions. Follow Tim Crackanthorp MP's Facebook page for further details on this meeting.
  • Collection of green waste within the Islington and surrounding areas may be delayed. Please continue to leave your green lid bin on the kerbside and services will recommence in these areas as soon as possible.
  • Clean-up of roadways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. This map will be updated each morning to indicate progress. Click to view larger version of map (PDF). The next map update will be shared tomorrow (Thursday 10 March).

KEY:

  • Completed streets are green.
  • Cleaned streets are blue and waiting for clearance from an asbestos specialist.
  • Streets we are planning to clean are yellow.
  • Streets undergoing cleaning are orange.

Wednesday 9 March - 11.00am

  • The safety of residents is paramount as the clean-up progresses following the fire at the Wickham Wool Store.
  • Since the fire, no asbestos particles have been detected by air monitors around Wickham. Air monitoring will continue throughout the clean-up.
  • The Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW), Public Works and the City of Newcastle are working together to enable residents to return to their homes as soon as possible. The clean-up will continue to focus first on homes and public areas that have been most affected by debris.
  • A public meeting will be held later this week to provide more information about the clean-up efforts. Details of this meeting will be advised soon.
  • Collection of green waste within the Islington and surrounding areas today may be delayed. Please continue to leave your green lid bin on the kerbside and services will recommence in these areas as soon as possible.
  • Today the wind and rain will provide a challenge for clean-up crews. If you’re concerned about materials there are simple steps you can take:
    • Keep materials wet.
    • Stay indoors and keep windows shut.
    • Don’t disturb suspected asbestos materials.
  • Clean-up of roadways impacted by fire debris from the fire continues. Please see below a map that gives you the status of local streets that have been identified as requiring cleaning as a priority to keep them open. Further updates will be shared later today advising of progress. Click to view larger version of map (PDF).

KEY:

  • Completed streets are green.
  • Cleaned streets are blue and waiting for clearance from an asbestos specialist.
  • Streets we are planning to clean are yellow.
  • Streets undergoing cleaning are orange.

Tuesday 8 March - 5.00pm

  • The safety of r
  • esidents is paramount as the clean-up progresses following the fire at the Wickham Wool Store.
  • Since the fire, no asbestos particles have been detected by air monitors around Wickham. Air monitoring will continue throughout the clean-up.
  • The Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW), Public Works and the City of Newcastle are working together to enable residents to return to their homes as soon as possible. The clean-up will continue to focus first on homes and public areas that have been most affected by debris.
  • Please do not touch or disturb any suspected asbestos fibres. Please continue to report any new findings of asbestos materials in your area to 131 555.
  • Evacuated residents from The Avenue Apartments on Milford Street can return to their homes tonight (Tuesday 8 March) following the fire at the Wickham Woolsheds.
  • Fire debris have been removed, and the apartments have been cleaned and cleared by asbestos specialists.
  • Fire asbestos debris have impacted a significant area and the Emergency Team is continuing to focus its efforts on homes and public areas that have been identified as most impacted.
  • A public meeting will be held later this week to provide more information about the clean-up efforts. Details of this meeting will be advised soon.

Monday 7 March 2022, 12.15pm

  • The emergency response team continues to make progress with assessment and clean-up, and additional resources are being deployed to speed up this process as much as possible.
  • Please do not touch or disturb any fibres present in your property. Friable asbestos should only be cleaned by Class A licenced professionals with the appropriate equipment.
  • Approximately 200 reports have been received to date via the EPA's hotline. Please continue to report any new findings of asbestos materials in your area to 131 555.
  • Islington Park remains closed. Please adhere to the safety directions displayed on signage in the area.
  • Air quality monitoring continues and has been expanded to include additional monitoring units in the Waratah area. Results from these units have continued to return negative results.

Detailed Information

Demolition of the two damaged buildings began on Friday 4 March, following structural inspections. Demolition will be controlled to minimise disruption of the asbestos materials on site. It will be a slow, carefully managed process to safely demolish the building with asbestos present and the nearby underground pipelines. The buildings need to be demolished to ensure safety of nearby residents and businesses and may take up to two weeks. Demolition work will continue between the hours of 7am and 6pm seven days a week. This is to expedite the safe return of residents in Annie Street as much as possible.

Temporary fencing has been installed around the demolition zone, with private security personnel in place to ensure public safety, along with NSW Police.

Friable asbestos fragments from the roof of the damaged buildings have travelled to neighbouring areas as a result of the smoke plume caused by the fire. NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Public Works Advisory and a licenced asbestos assessor are on-site investigating the potential risk of asbestos.

Air monitoring continues and has been expanded to include additional monitoring units in the Waratah area. All results to date have come back clear.

Please do not touch or disturb any fibres present in your property. Friable asbestos should only be cleaned by Class A licenced professionals with the appropriate equipment.

Residents and businesses can report findings of asbestos on their property to the EPA by phoning 131 555.

Approximately 200 locations have been registered to date.

Cleaning has been completed on the roadways of Roslyn Street and Milford Street. Milford Street remains closed to general traffic and will remain so until the units are assessed and cleaned, and to facilitate the movement of heavy demolition vehicles in the area.

Cleaning of roads and footpaths is a key emergency services priority to minimise further spread of materials from people and car movements. This is particularly important as the roads dry with the improved weather.

Decontamination crews are working through units on Milford Street and The Avenue. Additional remediation contractors have been engaged to increase the capacity to clean and remediate sites. Fire & Rescue NSW are also supporting the clean-up effort.

The Incident Management Team is managing these resources to structure a response that deals with the most pressing priorities first, and we ask for your patience.

Residents from Nos 1 - 27 Annie Street (which includes the industrial premises) are now able to return to their homes / businesses. Occupants from 26 - 30 Annie Street can also return to their homes.

Houses and businesses that are beyond the temporary fencing in Annie Street are still under evacuation / exclusion.

Work is also underway to remediate the Islington Park bike path.

Islington Park

City of Newcastle has been instructed by Emergency Services to temporarily close Islington Park as a result of the fire. This includes the off leash dog park.

Due to the potential risk of contamination by friable asbestos from the ash generated by the fire, the park will be closed until the contamination is managed and the site deemed safe.

Signage is on site to advise of the closure, we ask the community to follow the warnings and safety instructions on this signage.

Saturday 5 March 2022, 9.45am

On Tuesday 1 March 2022 emergency services attended a large fire at a storage facility (Old Wool store) on Annie Street, Wickham.

The Emergency Operations Centre at City of Newcastle's 12 Stewart Avenue has been established, bringing together representatives from NSW Police, Fire & Rescue NSW, Environmental Protection Authority (EPA), Hazmat Services, and City of Newcastle.

Demolition of the two damaged buildings began on Friday 4 March, following structural inspections. Demolition will be controlled to minimise disruption of the asbestos materials on site. It will be a slow, carefully managed process to safely demolish the building with asbestos present and the nearby underground pipelines. The buildings need to be demolished to ensure safety of nearby residents and businesses and may take up to two weeks. Demolition work will continue between the hours of 7am and 6pm seven days a week. This is to expedite the safe return of residents in Annie Street as much as possible.

Temporary fencing has been installed around the demolition zone, with private security personnel in place to ensure public safety, along with NSW Police.

Friable asbestos fragments from the roof of the damaged buildings have travelled to neighbouring areas as a result of the smoke plume caused by the fire. NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Public Works Advisory and a licenced asbestos assessor are on-site investigating the potential risk of asbestos.

Air monitoring has been conducted in the area including Islington and so far, the results have come back clear. Monitoring will continue over the weekend.

Please do not touch or disturb any fibres present in your property. Friable asbestos should only be cleaned by Class A licenced professionals with the appropriate equipment.

Residents and businesses can report findings of asbestos on their property to the EPA by phoning 131 555. If you are located in Milford Street and have not yet registered please do so as soon as possible.

Approximately 130 locations have been registered.

Cleaning has been completed on the roadways of Roslyn Street and Milford Street. Milford Street remains closed to general traffic and will remain so until the units are assessed and cleaned, and to facilitate the movement of heavy demolition vehicles in the area.

Cleaning of roads and footpaths is a key emergency services priority to minimise further spread of materials from people and car movements. This is particularly important as the roads dry with the improved weather.

Decontamination crews are working through units on Milford Street and The Avenue. Additional remediation contractors have been engaged to increase the capacity to clean and remediate sites. Fire & Rescue NSW are also supporting the clean-up effort.

The Incident Management Team is managing these resources to structure a response that deals with the most pressing priorities first, and we ask for your patience.

Residents from Nos 1 - 27 Annie Street (which includes the industrial premises) are now able to return to their homes / businesses. Occupants from 26 - 30 Annie Street can also return to their homes.

Houses and businesses that are beyond the temporary fencing in Annie Street are still under evacuation / exclusion.

Work is also underway to remediate the Islington Park bike path.

Evacuated residents

Any evacuated residents who have not yet registered are encouraged to record their information with the disaster response team. Evacuated residents are encouraged to register with the disaster response team. This needs to be done in person at the Goodlife Church on Albert Street, Wickham with the Welfare Services Functional Area (WelFACs) team.

Islington Park

City of Newcastle has been instructed by Emergency Services to temporarily close Islington Park as a result of the fire. This includes the off leash dog park.

Due to the potential risk of contamination by friable asbestos from the ash generated by the fire, the park will be closed until the contamination is managed and the site deemed safe.

Signage is on site to advise of the closure, we ask the community to follow the warnings and safety instructions on this signage.

Friday 4 March 2022, 4.40pm

On Tuesday 1 March 2022 emergency services attended a large fire at a storage facility (Old Wool store) on Annie Street, Wickham.

The Emergency Operations Centre at City of Newcastle's 12 Stewart Avenue has been established, bringing together representatives from NSW Police, Fire & Rescue NSW, Environmental Protection Authority (EPA), Hazmat Services, and City of Newcastle.

Demolition of the two damaged buildings began on Friday 4 March, following structural inspections. Demolition will be controlled to minimise disruption of the asbestos materials on site. It will be a slow, carefully managed process to safely demolish the building with asbestos present and the nearby underground pipelines. The buildings need to be demolished to ensure safety of nearby residents and businesses and may take up to two weeks. Demolition work will continue between the hours of 7am and 6pm seven days a week. This is to expedite the safe return of residents in Annie Street as much as possible.

Temporary fencing has been installed around the demolition zone, with private security personnel in place to ensure public safety, along with NSW Police.

Friable asbestos fragments from the roof of the damaged buildings have travelled to neighbouring areas as a result of the smoke plume caused by the fire. NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Public Works Advisory and a licenced asbestos assessor are on-site investigating the potential risk of asbestos.

Air monitoring has been conducted in the area including Islington and so far, the results have come back clear. Monitoring will continue over the weekend.

Please do not touch or disturb any fibres present in your property. Friable asbestos should only be cleaned by Class A licenced professionals with the appropriate equipment.

Residents and businesses can report findings of asbestos on their property to the EPA by phoning 131 555. If you are located in Milford Street and have not yet registered please do so as soon as possible.

Approximately 130 locations have been registered.

Cleaning has been completed on the roadways of Roslyn Street and Milford Street. Milford Street remains closed to general traffic and will remain so until the units are assessed and cleaned, and to facilitate the movement of heavy demolition vehicles in the area.

Cleaning of roads and footpaths is a key emergency services priority to minimise further spread of materials from people and car movements. This is particularly important as the roads dry with the improved weather.

Decontamination crews are working through units on Milford Street and The Avenue. Additional remediation contractors have been engaged to increase the capacity to clean and remediate sites. Fire & Rescue NSW are also supporting the clean-up effort.

The Incident Management Team is managing these resources to structure a response that deals with the most pressing priorities first, and we ask for your patience.

Four repatriations have occurred in Annie Street, with these residents outside the demolition zone.Work is also underway to remediate the Islington Park bike path.

Evacuated residents

Any evacuated residents who have not yet registered are encouraged to record their information with the disaster response team. Evacuated residents are encouraged to register with the disaster response team. This needs to be done in person at the Goodlife Church on Albert Street, Wickham with the Welfare Services Functional Area (WelFACs) team.

Islington Park

City of Newcastle has been instructed by Emergency Services to temporarily close Islington Park as a result of the fire. This includes the off leash dog park.

Due to the potential risk of contamination by friable asbestos from the ash generated by the fire, the park will be closed until the contamination is managed and the site deemed safe.

Signage is on site to advise of the closure, we ask the community to follow the warnings and safety instructions on this signage.

Friday 4 March 2022, 12.10pm

On Tuesday 1 March 2022 emergency services attended a large fire at a storage facility (Old Wool store) on Annie Street, Wickham.

The Emergency Operations Centre at City of Newcastle's 12 Stewart Avenue has been established, bringing together representatives from NSW Police, Fire & Rescue NSW, Environmental Protection Authority (EPA), Hazmat Services, and City of Newcastle.

Demolition of the two damaged buildings began on Friday 4 March, following structural inspections. Demolition will be controlled to minimise disruption of the asbestos materials on site. The buildings need to be demolished to ensure safety of nearby residents and businesses and may take up to two weeks.

Friable asbestos fragments from the roof of the damaged buildings have travelled to neighbouring areas as a result of the smoke plume caused by the fire. NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Public Works Advisory and a licenced asbestos assessor are on-site investigating the potential risk of asbestos.

Air monitoring has been conducted in the area including Islington and so far, the results have come back clear.

Please do not touch or disturb any fibres present in your property. Friable asbestos should only be cleaned by Class A licenced professionals with the appropriate equipment.

Residents and businesses can report findings of asbestos on their property to the EPA by phoning 131 555. If you are located in Milford Street and have not yet registered please do so as soon as possible.

Approximately 130 locations have been registered.

Cleaning has been completed on the roadways of Roslyn Street and Milford Street. Milford Street remains closed to general traffic and will remain so until the units are assessed and cleaned, and to facilitate the movement of heavy demolition vehicles in the area.

Cleaning of roads and footpaths is a key emergency services priority to minimise further spread of materials from people and car movements.

Assessments are being undertaken on The Avenue Apartments and Soque Apartments. Some units have been cleaned, however common areas will need to be cleaned to allow access. Additional remediation contractors will be engaged to increase the capacity to clean and remediate sites. Fire & Rescue NSW are also supporting the clean-up effort.

Annie Street remains closed west of John Street. Police are monitoring this area.

Islington Public School will remain closed Friday 4 March to enable clean-up work. Work is also underway to clean up the TAFE carpark at Tighes Hill.Work is also underway to remediate the Islington Park bike path.

Evacuated residents

Evacuated residents are encouraged to register with the disaster response team. This needs to be done in person at the Goodlife Church on Albert Street, Wickham with the Welfare Services Functional Area (WelFACs) team.

Islington Park

City of Newcastle has been instructed by Emergency Services to temporarily close Islington Park as a result of the fire. This includes the off leash dog park.

Due to the potential risk of contamination by friable asbestos from the ash generated by the fire, the park will be closed until the contamination is managed and the site deemed safe.

Signage is on site to advise of the closure, we ask the community to follow the warnings and safety instructions on this signage.

Thursday 3 March 2022, 6.10pm

On Tuesday 1 March 2022 emergency services attended a large fire at a storage facility (Old Wool store) on Annie Street, Wickham.

The Emergency Operations Centre at City of Newcastle's 12 Stewart Avenue has been established, bringing together representatives from NSW Police, Fire & Rescue NSW, Environmental Protection Authority (EPA), Hazmat Services, and City of Newcastle.

Demolition of the two damaged buildings will begin on Friday 4 March, following structural inspections. Demolition will be controlled to minimise disruption of the asbestos materials on site where possible. The buildings need to be demolished to ensure safety of nearby residents and businesses and may take up to two weeks.

Friable asbestos fragments from the roof of the damaged buildings have travelled to neighbouring areas as a result of the smoke plume caused by the fire. NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Public Works Advisory and a licenced asbestos assessor are on-site investigating the potential risk of asbestos.

Air monitoring has been conducted in the area and so far, the results have come back clear.

Please do not touch or disturb any fibres present in your property. Friable asbestos should only be cleaned by Class A licenced professionals with the appropriate equipment.

Residents and businesses can report findings of asbestos on their property to the EPA by phoning 131 555.

Approximately 100 locations have been registered.

Cleaning has been completed on the roadways of Roslyn Street and Milford Street. Milford Street remains closed to general traffic and will remain so until the units are assessed and cleaned, and to facilitate the movement of heavy demolition vehicles in the area.

Assessments are being undertaken on The Avenue Apartments and Soque Apartments. Some units have been cleaned, however common areas will need to be cleaned to allow access. Additional remediation contractors will be engaged to increase the capacity to clean and remediate sites. Fire & Rescue NSW are also supporting the clean-up effort.

Annie Street remains closed west of John Street. Police are monitoring this area.

Islington Public School will remain closed Friday 4 March to enable clean-up work. Work is also underway to clean up the TAFE carpark at Tighes Hill.

Work is also underway to remediate the Islington Park bike path.

Evacuated residents

Evacuated residents are encouraged to register with the disaster response team. This needs to be done in person at the Goodlife Church on Albert Street, Wickham with the Welfare Services Functional Area (WelFACs) team.

Islington Park

City of Newcastle have been instructed by Emergency Services to temporarily close Islington Park as a result of the fire. This includes the Off Leash Dog Park.

Due to the potential risk of contamination by friable asbestos from the ash generated by the fire, the park will be closed until the contamination is managed and the site deemed safe.

Signage is on site to advise of the closure, we ask the community to follow the warnings and safety instructions on this signage.

Thursday 3 March 2022, 2.00pm

On Tuesday 1 March 2022 emergency services attended a large fire at a storage facility (Old Wool store) on Annie Street, Wickham.

Demolition of the two damaged buildings will begin today (Thursday 3 March), following structural inspections. Demolition will be controlled to minimise disruption of the asbestos materials on site where possible. The buildings need to be demolished to ensure safety of nearby residents and businesses and may take up to two weeks.

Friable asbestos fragments from the roof of the damaged buildings have travelled to neighbouring areas as a result of the smoke plume caused by the fire. NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Public Works Advisory and a licenced asbestos assessor are on-site investigating the potential risk of asbestos.

Air monitoring has been conducted in the area and so far, the results have come back clear.

Please do not touch or disturb any fibres present in your property. Friable asbestos should only be cleaned by Class A licenced professionals with the appropriate equipment.

Residents and businesses can report findings of asbestos on their property to the EPA by phoning 131 555.

Evacuated residents

Evacuated residents are encouraged to register with the disaster response team. This needs to be done in person at the Goodlife Church on Albert Street, Wickham with the Welfare Services Functional Area (WelFACs) team.

Islington Park

City of Newcastle have been instructed by Emergency Services to temporarily close Islington Park as a result of the fire. This includes the Off Leash Dog Park.

Due to the potential risk of contamination by friable asbestos from the ash generated by the fire, the park will be closed until the contamination is managed and the site deemed safe.

Signage is on site to advise of the closure, we ask the community to follow the warnings and safety instructions on this signage.