School asbestos fears confirmed

Asbestos concerns closed Willetton Senior High School last week. Picture: Martin Kennealey d423390
Asbestos concerns closed Willetton Senior High School last week. Picture: Martin Kennealey d423390

Mr Vojakovic expressed his concerns to the Canning Times in February last year when planning for the multi-million-dollar redevelopment started.

He was concerned asbestos in ceilings and eaves on some school buildings could pose a risk to students and nearby residents if not removed correctly.

Mr Vojakovic said Willetton High would not be the only school built before 1985 to contain some form of asbestos. He said the school, built during the 1970s, was lucky the asbestos was found during winter because asbestos fibres were less likely to rise into the atmosphere during that season.

‘This time of year, there is not much dust around because the atmosphere is very heavy and wet,’ Mr Vojakovic said. ‘In the future, there would be more danger because once it gets sunny and the fibres start to rise, it would be a disaster.’

Construction workers found pieces of asbestos had fallen from a storeroom roof at Western Australia’s largest high school on Friday, July 18.

Some 1800 students had the week off, including 260 Year 12 students, after parents were advised of the asbestos discovery about 7.30pm the night before students were due to return to school.

Willetton High board chairman Lindsay Holland said the school dealt with the situation well and only a handful of students arrived on day one of Term 3.

Students returned to school as normal yesterday.