Maritime Union of Australia asbestos action

Members of the Maritime Workers Union who have been shifting asbestos from Barrow Island for the Gorgon gas project are refusing to return to work until their safety is guaranteed.

Workers were exposed to asbestos fibres from pellets dug up and transported from Barrow Island. Asbestos was used in pipes and fences about 40 years ago and buried when oilfields were first developed.

The Maritime Union of Australia is demanding an inquiry after laboratory tests confirmed workers had been exposed to asbestos while working on the $43 billion Gorgon project on Barrow Island.

The WA Branch has reported unsafe shipments of asbestos to WorkSafe and alerted other unions on the island after tests confirmed asbestos was being shipped and stevedored without safety precautions.  Both ships crew and waterside workers have been exposed to the deadly dust. Full story here.