11 Sep 2023

Asbestos found on Waimakariri river bank

3:10 pm on 11 September 2023
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Waimakariri River. (File image) Photo: 123RF

Asbestos has been discovered on the banks of the Waimakariri River.

Environment Canterbury has issued a warning after materials containing asbestos were discovered in an old dump site in the Waimakariri River Regional Park, on the north bank.

The asbestos was found among other rubbish and has likely been in the area for decades.

''Our environmental science and hazards team is aware and has been advising the parks team on how to manage the contaminated area,'' Environment Canterbury said.

Asbestos is harmful to human and animal health.

''We have been advised by contaminated land experts that as long as the material remains undisturbed, the risk to human health is very low,'' Environment Canterbury said.

''The parks team are planning to put concrete blocks around the area to stop people from accessing the contaminated area.''

Environment Canterbury staff were working on a containment and removal plan for the contaminated material.

The Waimakariri River Regional Park will remain open, but the public is asked to avoid the contaminated area and to pay attention to warning signs.

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