Asbestos in air conditioning ductwork

SafeWork SA recently issued a safety alert on asbestos in air conditioning ductwork.

This safety alert is a reminder that asbestos-containing millboard was widely used years ago in the construction industry because of its flame-resistant properties. In particular, asbestos-containing millboard surrounded reheating banks or coils throughout the ductwork of air conditioning units. Asbestos was popular due to its fire retardant properties and resistance to chemicals, water, and electricity.

While the use of asbestos in Australia was phased out in the late 1980s because of the carcinogenic properties of the fibres present in the mineral, there are still large quantities of asbestos in Australian industry and homes. Australia has the second highest mesothelioma death rate in the world, with 10,000 people losing their lives to mesothelioma since the early 1980s. 25,000 people are expected to die from mesothelioma over the next four decades.

Asbestos in the workplace remains a major hazard in WA - click here to read the safety alert from SafeWork SA.

Should you require advice on this subject or any other workplace safety matter, contact the NECA WA Safety team on (08) 6241 6100 or email

Source: SafetyCulture OHS News, 23 March 2018