Lagoon Beach closed after Parks and Wildlife detect asbestos on the beach

Environmental Service and Design Environmental Consultant Rod Cooper, C2 Demolition asbestos removalist Bob Brinkman, Crown Land Services Regional Property Officer Phil Thompson. Picture: Phillip Biggs
Environmental Service and Design Environmental Consultant Rod Cooper, C2 Demolition asbestos removalist Bob Brinkman, Crown Land Services Regional Property Officer Phil Thompson. Picture: Phillip Biggs

Significant sand movement at George Town’s Lagoon Beach has uncovered asbestos material at the popular Northern swimming beach.

Parks and Wildlife Service found the material on Thursday and closed the beach indefinitely to remove it.

The material is believed to have been there for at least 30 years and is the result of the demolition of some beach huts that were formerly on the beach.

It is likely to have been there for some time covered by the sand but Parks and Wildlife regional operations manager for the North Stan Matuszek said the movement of the sand had uncovered it.

“Every year there is a bit of sand movement [at the beach] but this year we’ve seen a lot more of it has moved, we are probably talking about a foot [20cm] of sand that has been removed,” he said.

Along the beach at She-Oak point, barricades and emergency tape have been erected near the George Town bowls club, with signs reading “danger, asbestos” however Mr Matuszek said he could not say if the finds were related.

An asbestos removal specialist was engaged to begin sifting through the sand to remove the pieces of asbestos removal on Friday.

Mr Matuszek said he could not say when the beach would be reopened but estimated that it shouldn’t be closed for too long. The reopening will be determined by the Department of Health and Human Services.

The closure is bad timing for George Town residents and tourist in the area for the March long weekend.