Knysna residents, clean-up crews warned not to touch hazardous asbestos

2017-06-27 15:06
A helicopter flies with a water bucket to extinguish fires behind a burnt out house in Knysna. (Halden Krog, AP)

A helicopter flies with a water bucket to extinguish fires behind a burnt out house in Knysna. (Halden Krog, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town - Residents and crews cleaning up after the Knysna fire not touch or work with any asbestos they find because it is a health hazard, the Eden District Municipality said on Tuesday.

A specialist registered with the Department of Labour started an assessment last Thursday of the approximately 650 structures damaged by the fires to identify materials containing asbestos so that it can all be removed by experts, the municipality advised.

Asbestos is commonly found in roofing material, ceiling and floor tiles, insulation and water pipes, tanks and gutters. It is highly toxic.

An accredited service provider would remove the asbestos after the report into how much there is, and where it is, was completed.

"All asbestos is hazardous and can potentially pose a risk to human health," the municipality warned.

"In order to prevent any risk to human health, it is essential that no asbestos-containing material is collected, handled, transported and disposed of by any person or contractor other than a suitably qualified, authorised and approved person or organisation."

The municipality warned:

- Don’t disturb soil contaminated with asbestos;
- Never create dust where there is asbestos;
- Never grind, sand, file or smash an asbestos-containing product;
- Don’t dig in potential asbestos-contaminated areas;
- Keep the surface of the contaminated area damp until the asbestos-containing material is removed by the accredited service provider.

In the meantime, signage is being placed on the affected properties.

An "A" sign on the property indicates the presence of asbestos

An "F" sign indicates an asbestos-free property.

To report asbestos-containing material or asbestos contamination, email Morton Hubbe, Manager: District Solid Waste Management, on or Johan Gie, District Waste Management Officer, on The region is recovering after fires devastated large swathes of the region, including houses in Knysna.

Read more on:    george  |  cape town  |  knysna fires  |  fires

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Partner Content
How data is changing investments

Technological disruption is rife in many spheres of business and given the quantity of data available, it’s no surprise that the way in which asset managers work is also changing fast.

Behind the sparkle

Alluring, beautiful and timeless - diamonds are some of the most sought after gems in the world and are a true testament of everlasting brilliance. Let us take you behind the sparkle to show you the history behind this coveted jewel.


Chocolate can be fatal for dogs

Chocolate contains a substance called theobromine that is similar to caffeine and is toxic to dogs at certain levels.



Spider-man star's adorable relationship with his dog
Do you know what you are feeding your dog?
Watch: Proof animals have souls
Would you clone your pet?
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.