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BBC Wales's Rhidian Thomas
"The reclaimation of the site as part of the Millennium Coastal Park has been a popular development."
 real 56k

Tuesday, 14 November, 2000, 14:13 GMT
Asbestos found at coastal park
Millennium Coastal Park, Llanelli
Coastal park directors are awaiting their own test results
Loose asbestos has been found under part of the new Millennium Coastal Park on the site of a former power station.

All contaminated land was supposed to have been made safe before the coastline was reclaimed.

Asbestos found under top soil
The asbestos was found under top soil

But blue asbestos - which can cause deadly lung diseases - has been revealed along the coast at Burry Port, where Carmarthen Bay Power Station once stood.

The station was closed in 1985 before demolition in 1990 and its land - where ash had been dumped - was reclaimed by the Millennium Coastal Park.

It is thought coastal erosion, caused by the recent bad weather, has exposed the loose asbestos - which should have been removed before redevelopment of the land - under the top soil of the park.

A sample of the material was taken by BBC Wales and tested by an independent laboratory. It confirmed blue asbestos - the most likely to damage to human health.

Related illnesses

When it is wet, asbestos is considered safe but the difficulty arises in disposing of it properly before it dries and the fibres are blown into the air.

Many who worked at the former power station where asbestos was widely used, are suffering asbestos related illnesses.

Solicitor Jeff Parsons - who has represented hundreds of asbestos-related cases - said he was "amazed" that all asbestos has not been cleared from the site.

"I am surprised because it's something that I was sufficiently concerned about to write to the council about back in 1994," he said.

"At that time I had a reply assuring me that all proper steps would be taken and whatever recommendation were made, would be followed.

"I'd be particularly surprised if now, six years later, we're discovering that this form of asbestos is coming to light."

The Millennium Coastal Park said it was not prepared to comment until next week when their own tests results are known.

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20 Jul 00 | Wales
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