30 Dec 2002

Fiji Labour ministry calls halt to asbestos removal work

6:19 am on 30 December 2002

Fiji's Labour ministry has ordered a halt to the removal of asbestos from Nadi International Airport after four customs officers working in the construction area claimed they had been affected by asbestos dust.

Labour Minister, Kenneth Zinck, says urgent tests will be carried out to ascertain if the dust was responsible for the men becoming sick.

He said officers from the ministry's occupational health and safety unit will conduct checks in the terminal area.

They will also work with the contractors and airport management to check the process used to remove the asbestos.

The airport is undergoing a major upgrade which is due to be completed ahead of next year's South Pacific Games which are being held in Fiji.