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Asbestos discoveries in building products the tip of the iceberg

"The further discoveries of asbestos-containing material on Australian building sites confirms the need for decisive action from Government and industry in addressing the proliferation of non-conforming product. Ai Group would contribute positively to a reconvened Senate inquiry into the issue as called for today by Senator Nick Xenophon," Ai Group Chief Executive, Innes Willox, said today.

"The Committee’s Interim report – Safety - not a matter of good luck – provided a glimpse into a much larger issue. In recent years, unsafe products have appeared in a range of Australian supply chains as evidenced by the frozen berries recall; the USB charger fatality; the Infinity cable recall and the Lacrosse building fire in Melbourne.

"In all cases regulators responded quickly and their actions no doubt saved many more people from potential death and injury. However, there is a need for further action. Ai Group has long maintained that non-conforming product is adversely impacting our community, putting lives at risk and harming Australian businesses. To date, we have only seen the tip of the iceberg.

"Regulators must be active in policing regulation where goods enter the country, where they are sold and, in the case of building and construction, during and after installation. Industry also has important roles to play. As a fundamental step, supply chain participants should ask 'how do I know that this product is safe' before purchase or installation," Mr Willox said.

Media Enquiries: Tony Melville – 0419 190 347