Horrible Mitchell chemical fire handled well by Government, so sayeth Simon

By 19 December, 2013 8

photo by John Lafferty

Simon Corbell has announced a review of the Government responses to the Mitchell PCB fire have come up looking good:

An independent review of the ACT Government’s testing and analysis of a fire, which destroyed a business in Mitchell found that the government response was generally well managed, Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development, Simon Corbell, said today.

The government engaged the National Research Centre for Environmental Toxicology at the University of Queensland to assess the environmental testing and analysis during and following the fire at Energy Services Invironmental (ESI) in September 2011 and today released the findings of the review.

The review found that the ACT emergency, environment and health authorities acted quickly, responsibly and carefully to protect the health of the community and the environment during and after the fire.

Observations were made in relation to protocols and procedures for sampling and monitoring of the airborne toxins, and the media and public information made available during and immediately after the incident.

“It is important to review our response and continue to make improvements to our processes and procedures for any future incidents,” Mr Corbell said.

“Expert advice from ACT Health is that the risk to human health was very low, emphasising that the precautionary approach taken by the emergency authorities served to minimise any public health risk.

[photo by John Lafferty]

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8 Responses to Horrible Mitchell chemical fire handled well by Government, so sayeth Simon
#1
maxblues5:41 pm, 19 Dec 13

Mitchell is not an aesthetically pleasing suburb but “horrible” is over the top.

#2
Masquara6:05 pm, 19 Dec 13

‘ang on – what “precautionary approach” did the authorities take? “Stay indoors”? The pollution hit the inner north hard, for hours and hours, and many people were exposed. ABC just reported that those “observations” were in fact recommendations that the “environment” minister plans to ignore. As someone who had a sore throat from the plume – kilometres away – despite “staying indoors”, frankly I think the testing should go ahead.

#3
shauno6:41 pm, 19 Dec 13

shit happens you just have to deal with it at the time

#4
housebound6:47 pm, 19 Dec 13

Or not so well overall, according to the ABC News

#5
c_c™7:32 pm, 19 Dec 13

Well I’ll have to take a look at the actual report, but running out of the required foam suppression agent and only just managing to get enough from NSW doesn’t sound that good.

And surely the decision to site this recycling centre on an urban interface is the pivotal stuff up.

#6
Silentforce7:45 pm, 19 Dec 13

I Lived in Gungahlin at the time which then totalled 11 years. I recall things a bit differently; and being a media hound, I read many media reports and ACT Government releases during and after the event. I question Mr Corbell’s “announcement”; and add my own observations and questions based on the announcement.

“generally well managed”

Means:

‘Fu*k, we who were responsible for managing this thing with no experience other than being elected/ appointed to a cushy job; and are lucky no one was injured or killed; or that we were sued for heaps where we would have to account to Ratepayers respond carefully to an Enquiry like the last big fire.’ Sh*t! We could have had our incompetence fully exposed. Lucky we had someone who was SMS savvy.

“Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development, Simon Corbell, said today.”

Means:

Blathered.

“The government engaged the National Research Centre for Environmental Toxicology at the University of Queensland to assess the environmental testing and analysis during and following the fire at Energy Services Invironmental (ESI) in September 2011.”

Gee, I didn’t know that. When was that announced and what did I have to read to catch that? Any call for public submissions?

“The review found that the ACT emergency, environment and health authorities acted quickly, responsibly and carefully to protect the health of the community and the environment during and after the fire.”

Means:

Go get what you pay for given the terms of reference offered.

“Observations were made in relation to protocols and procedures for sampling and monitoring of the airborne toxins, and the media and public information made available during and immediately after the incident.”

Means:

The Inquiry read The Canberra Times and the ACT Government Media’s feed to the ABC.

“It is important to review our response and continue to make improvements to our processes and procedures for any future incidents,” Mr Corbell said.”

Means:

ACT Government MINSUB writers had better sharpen their writing skills so we are just as lucky when the next SNAFU comes along, otherwise our electoral margin against the Liberals may drop by 0.00001%.

“Expert advice from ACT Health is that the risk to human health was very low, emphasising that the precautionary approach taken by the emergency authorities served to minimise any public health risk.”

Means:

‘Fu*k, we who were responsible for managing this thing with no experience other than being elected/ appointed to a cushy job; and are lucky no one was injured or killed; or that we were sued for heaps where we would have to account to Ratepayers respond carefully to an Enquiry like the last big fire.’ Sh*t! We could have had our incompetence fully exposed. Lucky we had someone who was SMS savvy.

#7
sepi11:09 pm, 19 Dec 13

the review recommends ongoing testing of surrounding pasture areas and livestock. What about the surrounding humans??? Are our home vegie patches full of pthalates and in fact unhealthier than bought vegies?

Total stuff up. We didn’t even get the msg to stay inside til way too late, and we live pretty close to the plume.

#8
OverLord8:51 am, 20 Dec 13

I fell sorry for the resadents who had to live through this insadent.

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