Asbestos found in train station

Last updated 15:57 18/12/2013
Melling Station
CLOSED: The building at Melling Station has been closed temporarily as a safety precaution after testing found evidence of asbestos.

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Melling Railway Station in Lower Hutt has been temporarily closed after the discovery of asbestos.

Testing had produced positive results for asbestos dust, but not airborne asbestos, the Greater Wellington Regional Council's general manager of public transport Wayne Hastie said.

"So there's no risk of people inhaling asbestos, but we need to close the building until the building is cleaned thoroughly to remove the dust."

The building would be cleaned as soon as possible then tested again, Mr Hastie said.

A kiosk and ticket agency in the building have also been closed until further notice.

Melling commuters can buy tickets for single trips on board.

Ten-trip tickets and monthly passes will need to be bought at Wellington Station.

The council was testing all stations where asbestos might be present, Dr Hastie said.

In the 1950s and 60s when many stations were built, asbestos material was used in construction.

''We decided it was best to test all of our buildings that are of a similar era sooner rather than later.''

Four other buildings at Upper Hutt, Trentham, Woburn and Taita stations showed evidence of asbestos dust in non public access areas.

These areas have been cleaned, and the roof at Trentham replaced.

At Taita Station, asbestos dust was found in the signal box used by KiwiRail staff.

Staff were not working out of this signal box until the area was cleaned thoroughly and retested.

''This will have implications for some services, including possible delays to some peak hour afternoon services between Taita and Upper Hutt.''

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- The Dominion Post

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