Hunt for dumpers

INVESTIGATIONS are under way after asbestos was illegally dumped in Old Guildford and Fairfield last week.

The deadly substance was dumped in Springfield Street, Old Guildford, and the entrance to Knight Park in Donald Street, Fairfield, on Sunday night.

Fire and Rescue NSW (HAZMAT), as well as police, blocked all entry and exit points to the sites before fire crews cleared up the mounds of material.

They wore protective clothing and wet down the waste to stop fibres becoming airborne.

The cancer-causing material was then covered with black plastic before being removed.

Residents told metropolitan media they saw a truck driving off down the street at the time of the spill.

A Fairfield Council spokesman said that each month, the council received reports of between four and six incidents of illegally dumped asbestos.

"The council takes the matter of illegally dumped asbestos very seriously," he said.

The spokesman said the council was determined to catch those responsible for illegal dumping.

The maximum penalty for an individual caught disposing of waste deemed harmful to the environment is $1 million and/or seven years' jail.

But if a corporation is caught doing it, the maximum penalty is $5 million.

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