Thursday, 7 January 2016 - 12:35
Report: Wateringen residents unwittingly exposed to asbestos
A very critical report on the asbestos cleanup in Wateringen after a large fire in January last year, was leaked on Wednesday. The investigators concluded that the the municipality of Westland unnecessarily exposed residents to severe health risks by not cleaning up the asbestos properly after the fire. One investigator even calls it "a deadly health risk", RTL Nieuws reports. According to the report, despite two rounds of cleanup by the municipality after the fire last year, the area is still not clean. "The municipality Westland seriously and culpably neglects its public task to clean up the public spaces and thereby risk the lives of its people unnecessarily", asbestos jurist Yvonne Waterman, who did the investigation, writes. The whole report can be read here in Dutch. According to RTL, the province of Zuid-Holland planned to keep the report secret for the time being, but finally relented under public pressure and released it. In a reaction to the report, Mayor Sjaak van der Tak said on Wednesday that the image the report creates "does not correspond to reality". A spokesperson for the municipality stated that the municipality did more than the Ministry requires when cleaning up the asbestos.