JUST A JOB: Former Tweed Shire Council ganger Laurie Swift, pictured at his Pottsville home.
JUST A JOB: Former Tweed Shire Council ganger Laurie Swift, pictured at his Pottsville home. Alina Rylko

Mooball workers ‘didn’t know’ of radioactive dangers

'GANGER' Laurie Swift and his plumber Geoff Keevers loaded radioactive sand on trucks to cart it out of Mooball.

Mr Keevers, 57, told the Tweed Daily News last August he had developed a rare blood platelet mutation in his forties and was told by his doctor it may have been caused by radiation exposure.

Mr Swift headed the remediation works of sand tailings by Tweed Shire Council in the 1980s.

"They gave us a thing to put on our belt. I forget what they call that ... it would tell us 'how hot we got'," he said.

City lawyers investigate Mooball cancer cluster claims

The carpenter said he was responsible for taking Geiger counter readings for two 'health department fellows'.

"My job was to go around with this thing, and when it got to certain (levels), I'd have to mark it out where it was.

"I'm not sure if they told us it was radioactive."

Mr Swift said there were no safety precautions to protect workers from touching or inhaling the sand.

"I didn't think it was that dangerous anyway," he said. "I don't know what they did with it, I didn't ask. It was only a daily job for us."

Mr Swift said there could be radioactive sand remaining beneath some Mooball homes as they weren't able to access some areas beneath concrete foundations.



Greens slam compulsory acqusition of hospital site

Greens slam compulsory acqusition of hospital site

MP says government is "wasting millions of taxpayers money”.

Council in hot water after secret decision to halt business

Council in hot water after secret decision to halt business

Tweed's water extraction debate is heating up, again

Work begins on the last of the major flood repairs

Work begins on the last of the major flood repairs

Tweed flood repairs get big funding boost

Local Partners