CONCRETE CANCER IN A CONCRETE JUNGLE
Written on the 19 January 2015
TENANTS of older high rises are being told to disregard the sea breeze and salt water for a little while, and redirect their attention to assessing for 'concrete cancer' formations in their abodes.
Strata Community Australia (Qld) president Simon Barnard has expressed concern that maintenance has slipped from the public eye.
This is despite the issue being brought to attention this time last year when spalling, commonly known as concrete cancer, was found in a well-known Gold Coast apartment block, the Iluka (pictured(, and led to the property's demolition.
The issue is most prevalent in buildings situated near salt water, and has the potential to financially ruin property due to the swelling of concrete.
"It is absolutely vital than when maintenance plans are reviewed, plans for monitoring and treating concrete cancer are updated and implemented immediately," says Barnard.
"This time last year one of the State's best known high rise blocks on the Gold Coast was found to be riddled with concrete cancer and a leading Queensland architect warned that he suspects the problem is widespread."
"Just because this type of incident has been out of the news, does not mean that it has gone away. I would expect that dozens if not more, strata titled properties in Queensland have the beginnings of concrete cancer, and are going undetected."
Older buildings are more likely to contract concrete cancer due to requirements and specifications increasing over the years.
Warning signs include reddish or brown stains running down any part of a building, particularly when adjacent to cracked concrete, and concrete lifting or exploding out.
Slight rust stains are the first symptom, and can be fixed through chiselling if attended to immediately, but treatment is costly thereafter or can result in demolition.