Rail industry news (Australia, New Zealand)

UPDATED: Queensland Rail detects asbestos on EMU train

Queensland Rail has reassured its customers that the Electric Multiple Units (EMUs) trains are safe to return to service following the discovery of asbestos in a unit last week.

Over the weekend (23-24 March) an independent asbestos assessor progressively inspected the units and Queensland Rail’s maintenance facility.

The asbestos was found in black bitumen paint in a sealed section on the ceiling and floor of the train, therefore when the shell of the EMU is covered there is negligible risk of exposure to asbestos amongst employees, contractors, and customers.

The independent assessor also carried out several further inspections within our maintenance facility reiterating the exposure risk to employees working in the facility is negligible.

Queensland Rail CEO Kat Stapleton has explained the company has been working closely with a range of stakeholders.

“To fully understand any potential impacts to employees who have undertaken work in the past, we will work with our Chief Medical Officer and a specialist hygienist in asbestos exposure and continue to provide advice and support to identified employees and contractors,” she said.

“The safe working plan for the EMU overhaul and disposals program is being reviewed to ensure our employees and contractors are safe from exposure.”