NBN chief Quigley defends asbestos training

THE chief executive of the National Broadband Network (NBN) insists the company has a thorough system of training to protect contractors and the public from asbestos exposure while the network is being laid.

Several sites across the country have been shut down and some residents were forced to move from their homes as a result of a series of asbestos-related safety breaches while pits were being prepared for the NBN.

Mike Quigley, the NBN's chief executive, said the company and Telstra were always aware the ageing pits would present a challenge as the network rolled out across the country, but said plans were in place to handle it.
Video: Mike Quigley defends NBN asbestos safety training (ABC News)

"There is a significant amount of that material in the networks and both companies put in place the procedures for dealing with that and the training," Mr Quigley said during Senate Estimates last night.

"At the end of April we had some 3,650 contractors working on network construction who had completed safety and awareness training, which includes training in the identification and handling of asbestos.

Read more at ABC news online.