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Do You Know the Dangers of Asbestos? Asbestos Awareness Month

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Do You Know the Dangers of Asbestos?
Asbestos Awareness Month

We were previously unaware of the dangers that asbestos posed to our health. Once it was a popular product in manufactured goods and building materials, and it was the perfect material. It was flexible and strong, widely available and affordable, resistant to chemicals, water and electricity, it provided heat and sound insulation, and it had excellent fire resistance. But then we found out that asbestos is very fibrous, and those microscopic, little fibres are easily breathed in where they become trapped in the lungs. These fibres cause damage over time and can cause more serious complications like asbestosis (a chronic lung disease), lung cancer and mesothelioma (an aggressive, deadly form of cancer affecting the mesothelial cells, which is a slippery protective surface covering the lungs, chest wall, diaphragm, heart and inside the abdomen). Symptoms can take around 20 to 30 years to show after exposure and it can take on average 45 years to develop into mesothelioma.

Asbestos was very popular in Australia. Up until 1987, we had the highest rates of asbestos use per person – we mined it up until 1983 and imported 1.5 million tonnes of asbestos between 1930 and 1983. Unfortunately, due to the popularity in Australia, it also means we have one of the highest rates of mesothelioma. On average, an estimated 700 people die from mesothelioma and 4,000 die from asbestos-related diseases annually, which is four times the annual road death toll. It is approximated that 30% of lung cancer deaths are caused due to past exposure to asbestos. World-wide deaths caused by work-related exposure to asbestos was estimated at 219,000 deaths in 2016 and it was the culprit for 80% of all work-related cancer deaths in Australasia, Western Europe, North America and Asia Pacifica regions. (Systematic analyses of the 2016 GBD study published February 2020).

Fortunately, asbestos was completely banned in Australia on 31st December 2003. Although mining of asbestos and various regulations on asbestos were put in place, up until 2003 asbestos was still being imported and used. Even our cars had asbestos in them! It is safe to say that vehicles manufactured before January 2004 contain asbestos in the gaskets and brake and clutch lining. They are safe to drive, but DIY maintenance should not be undertaken as you could disturb the asbestos. Although we made a huge change and banned asbestos, unfortunately death from asbestos related diseases and cancers will continue for the next four to five decades, even if we managed to eliminate asbestos entirely.

Now days, the biggest risk of exposure to asbestos is in the home – to homeowners doing DIY renovations in older homes or unsuspecting occupants with degrading asbestos, which means more chance of it becoming friable and releasing those dangerous fibres into the air. Over 3,000 products had asbestos in it and there is approximately 6.4 million tonnes of asbestos still in buildings and homes today. These products are as old as 100 years to as little as 30 years old and are still present in many houses throughout Australia. We have roughly one third of homes containing asbestos products, anything built before 1990 will most likely have asbestos.

Asbestos can be found in many products and areas including:

  • roofing and gutters
  • gables and eaves
  • walls
  • vinyl, carpet and tile underlay
  • lining behind wall tiles
  • imitation brick cladding
  • fencing
  • sheds
  • splashbacks in wet areas
  • telecommunication pits
  • window putty
  • expansion joints
  • packing under beams
  • concrete formwork

(Compiled from asbestossafety.gov.au)

Moreover, in Australia, diagnoses for mesothelioma is increasing due to exposure outside of the workplace. It was estimated in 2020 that 1 in 3 new mesothelioma cases are due to exposure outside of the workplace as a result of lack of awareness of the dangers of asbestos and the insufficient education in DIY renovators.

In Australia, we have a record of individuals who have had possible exposure to asbestos for helping to provide detailed and accurate information at the time so in the future if they develop an asbestos related illness, they have accurate information, as asbestos has a long latency period and essential details may be forgotten. If you believe you may have been exposed to asbestos, whether in your home, at work, or your community, you can register your details here.

Ultimately, there is no safe level of exposure to asbestos. We need to be aware of the dangers of exposure to asbestos, the risks involved, where we might find asbestos and we need to be vigilant of possible degradation of asbestos in our homes. Our Online Asbestos Awareness Course is suitable for any tradie who might come across asbestos in their line of work (electricians, plumbers, bathroom and kitchen renovators, amongst others) or even DIY renovators who want to keep themselves safe from the risks of asbestos exposure.

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How Long is a Forklift Course? How Much is the Forklift Course Cost in Syndey, NSW?

Curious about how long it takes to get your forklift course? Or maybe you’re wondering how much forklift course will cost you? You’ve come to the right place! In this blog, we’ll explore everything you need to know about the duration and cost of a forklift course in New South Wales (NSW). Whether you’re looking to enhance your career or just keen to learn a new skill, understanding these details will help you plan your journey to becoming a certified forklift operator. Let’s dive in! Forklift Licence Course Duration A typical forklift course spans over two days, with an optional third day if additional assessment is necessary. Here’s a breakdown of the course structure: Day 1 – Presentation, discussion, and operational activities. Day 2 – Theory review, unit of competence assessment (formative assessment) and Practical Demonstration. Day 3 – Assessment conducted by a Safe Work NSW accredited assessor, this day focuses on final evaluations to ensure you meet all competency standards. The course is designed to be flexible, offering weekdays, weekends, and evening forklift course classes to accommodate different schedules. Forklift Licence Course Cost in NSW The cost of the forklift licence course in NSW is $400. This fee is comprehensive and includes the Safe Work NSW Assessment Fee, ensuring there are no hidden costs. Here are some key features of the course: – Best Forklift Licence Training Guarantee: Includes free extra training if deemed necessary by the assessor. – Flexible Class Schedules: Weekdays, weekends, and night classes are available at the same price. – Nationally Recognized Training Provider: Safe Work NSW approved (RTO 800483), ensuring high standards and compliance with national guidelines. Course Details and Entry Requirements The forklift licence course covers extensive areas to ensure you are fully prepared for real-world operations. The practical sessions take place in a safe, designated area, while theoretical components are taught in a classroom environment. Key areas of focus include: – Hazard assessment and planning – Setting up and operating the forklift – Conducting risk assessments and routine equipment checks – Maneuvering the forklift, performing various lifts, and load capacity calculation – Shutting down and securing the forklift after use Entry Requirements: – Minimum 18 years of age – 100 points of proof of ID – Good comprehension of English (both verbal and written) – Unique Student Identifier (USI) Why Choose Our Forklift Course? Choosing our forklift course means opting for a nationally recognised quality and reliable forklift licence course. Here’s why: – Safe Work NSW Approved: Our course is nationally recognized, ensuring you receive top-notch training. – Nationally recognised Forklift Course. – No Hidden Costs: The $400 fee covers everything, including the assessment. – Flexible Training Options: Attend classes at times that suit your schedule (weekend, weekday or evening forklift classes), with the added benefit of free extra training if needed. – With nearly two decades of industry experience and over 100,000 satisfied students, we offer group discounts and workplace training upon employer request. In conclusion, our forklift course in NSW is designed to be comprehensive, flexible, and affordable, ensuring you gain the necessary skills and certification efficiently. Enroll today and take the first step towards becoming a certified forklift operator! For more details or to register for the course, click here!

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