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USG Boral warns of potential asbestos contamination

Plasterboard manufacturer USG Boral has issued a warning to customers that some of its fire-rated plasterboard products may be contaminated with asbestos.

The contamination affects fire-rated plasterboards containing vermiculite imported from China and was discovered in routine testing. The company has told builders to quarantine any USG Boral fire-rated plasterboard products pending further advice.

USG Boral is advising customers to quarantine the following fire-rated plasterboard products and refrain from installing, distributing or supplying them to customers:

  • Firestop Plasterboard
  • Fire WetstopTM Plasterboard
  • MultistopTM Plasterboard range (3/3HI, 4/4HI, 5/5HI)
  • ShaftlinerTM Mould Stop Plasterboard.

The company said it has stopped using the Chinese-sources vermiculite and will switch to another source and is arranging for the safe removal of all unused vermiculite from its facilities at Camellia, Port Melbourne, and Pinkenba. It will also test all finished products made using vermiculite as an ingredient.

CFMEU National Construction Secretary Dave Noonan said there is no safe level of asbestos exposure, so construction businesses must take immediate steps to quarantine potentially contaminated products and ensure workers and customers are safe.

“The CFMEU will engage with the company to eliminate the risk of exposure from factories, distribution centres and construction sites,” he said.

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