12:26 pm, Thursday 16 August, 2012
Approximately 23,000 Chinese-made cars were recalled after asbestos was found in its engine and exhaust gaskets.
WorkCover NSW is coordinating with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, Australian Customs and Border Protection Service, other work health and safety regulators and government agencies as well as the supplier of Great Wall and Chery motor vehicles in relation to the recall of the vehicles.
A risk assessment carried out by an independent occupational hygienist discovered a negligible risk of asbestos exposure while the gaskets are in place. It was reported that disturbance or removal of the asbestos gaskets may liberate asbestos fibres.
Replacement of car parts in existing vehicles will be done by the supplier’s automotive repairers in line with work health and safety legislation.
WorkCover is working with the suppliers to have asbestos gaskets removed for the existing stock of un-sold vehicles or for these cars returned to the overseas manufacturer.
WorkCover calls on businesses in the automotive repair industry and the car wrecking and recycling industry to do the following:
- Treat all Great Wall and Chery motor vehicles as containing asbestos gaskets unless testing has indicated the gaskets are asbestos free, or service records are verified to determine that the gaskets have been removed. Contact the supplier for further information on the type and location of asbestos gaskets prior to removing any gaskets.
- Carry out all asbestos gasket removal work in accordance with the Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011 and WorkCover Guidance Note: Working with Asbestos in the Motor Vehicle Repair Industry.
- Ensure that health monitoring is provided in accordance with the Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011 for all workers who are carrying out ongoing asbestos removal work or asbestos-related work. Contact the Dust Diseases Board (DDB) on (02) 8223 6600 for further advice on health monitoring.
More information on working with asbestos in the motor vehicle industry can be accessed through the WorkCover website.
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