The NSW Government has extended the registration period for free testing for loose-fill asbestos in Hunter homes until August 31st 2018.

Homeowners in the Newcastle, Maitland, Cessnock, Port Stephens and Lake Macquarie Council areas whose property was built prior to 1980 are being encouraged to sign up for the testing.

The Voluntary Purchase and Demolition Program was opened on July 2nd, and as 2NURFM reported yesterday, concerns were expressed by the community and Labor MP Yasmin Catley that residents hadn’t received enough time to register over the busy school holiday period.

In response, Minister for Better Regulation, Matt Kean agreed he wants to ensure Greater Newcastle dwellers are engaging with the scheme, citing a ‘better safe than sorry’ attitude.

Loose-fill asbestos is raw crushed asbestos which was installed as ceiling insulation in an unknown number of pre-1980s homes across the state.

Over time, hazardous airborne fibres can move from the ceiling into living spaces.

This dangerous product was discovered in a home at Glendale last month.

Earlier experience in both NSW and the ACT has demonstrated that simply removing the product from a ceiling cavity doesn’t eliminate the enduring hazard.

If you’d like to have your home tested, go to the

Fair Trading website

or call them on 13 32 20.

Alternatively, you can call Service NSW on 13 77 88.