Complaints spark calls for Calgary asbestos review

January 20, 2014 at 2:34 PM

A Calgary city councillor will make a suggestion at city hall today to protect Calgarians from potential contamination by asbestos dust.

Carra acknowledged the city does not have a direct role in asbestos abatement. Alberta Health Services oversees public health but doesn't cover demolitions.

"What we discovered was that there was a gap between different levels of government who regulate things," said Carra.

"There's Alberta Health and Safety, there's the Alberta building code and there's the city inspectors."

Carra is suggesting the city change its building permit process to require contractors doing demolitions to notify the city so it can dispatch inspectors to the site.

He said he has been told building inspectors can take on the job without significantly adding to their workload and the move will not require hiring additional staff.

"This concern about asbestos came up last year when a house in Bridgeland was being demolished," said Carra.

He said he received complaints about dust — potentially from asbestos — being spread onto neighbouring properties.

Asbestos particles have been linked to serious health problems, including emphysema and lung cancer.

CBC News