Don’t walk into a DIY death-trap – know asbestos
TEACHER turned builder Vanessa Norimi isn't letting asbestos stand in the way of her dream career.
The Rockhampton based designer and carpenter is set to become a licensed builder, after leaving a 15-year teaching career behind.
She recently completed a Master Builders Asbestos Worker Program, and said it was vital to follow best practice in situations involving the dangerous building material.
It's a timely reminder during National Asbestos Awareness month.
"I realised early on that it is paramount to follow best practice when dealing with this pervasive material, and to educate home owners about the common dangers they face if they attempt to renovate themselves," she said.
"A few years ago I spent two days sanding what I thought was simply lino off the floors. It turns out I was walking around in a cloud of asbestos, wearing only a paper mask, and didn't even know it.
"This is a good example of why builders need to be properly trained in asbestos removal, and why DIY renovators should engage a professional."
She completed Master Builders new Asbestos Worker Program, which provides asbestos workers with the training needed to legally remove more than 10sq m of non-friable asbestos.
"It brought home the basic importance of team work. I would not hesitate to recommend this program to others," she said.
Vanessa had a light bulb moment eight years ago, while watching an episode of Grand Designs, inspiring her to start her building company Norimi House Pty Ltd.
"I always craved a career where I could work with my hands," she said.
"Of course, when I told my boss that I was quitting to become a builder, he laughed."
But, with a builders' licence behind her, the next step is to expand the company into construction.
"We're just starting out, and I just completed my first small renovation project."
Master Builders is supporting National Asbestos Awareness month by offering a $50 discount on the Asbestos Worker Program during November.