The Victorian government will examine new tests which found asbestos dust on ceiling cavities of homes near the old Wunderlich asbestos factory in Melbourne.
The asbestos toll from the Wunderlich factory in Sunshine was reported as 16 last week. This figure has risen by a further 17 possible deaths, the Herald Sun reported on Sunday.
The newspaper also conducted independent tests on dust in eight roof spaces from houses near the factory and found six contained invisible asbestos dust.
Victorian Premier Denis Napthine said the results on the tests would be examined by a special taskforce.
“The EPA can assess that material and establish a task force to examine that information and to work with local council, local community and house owners to get the best information available to assist those house owners in the area,” he said on Sunday.
Dr Napthine said there was an “enormous” amount of support for residents who had concerns about their health or the local environment and urged them to talk to their local GP and the council.
Wunderlich was sold to CSR in 1969 and then to James Hardie in 1977. It stopped operating in the 1980s.