ACM Check: Identifying Asbestos in WA Homes

Curtin University has created and tested an app for smartphone and tablet devices called ACM Check (Asbestos-Containing Material Check) that identifies potential materials in and around the home that may contain asbestos. This study aims to estimate the number of Western Australian households that contain asbestos, determine the most common types of asbestos-containing materials and then describe the condition of these asbestos products.

About the study

The ACM Check app will contribute towards preventing exposure to asbestos-containing materials by increasing the user’s awareness of potentially dangerous products in and around their home. We are also aiming to find out how many Western Australians are at risk of exposure to domestic sources of asbestos. We are aiming for 2000 adults to download and complete ACM Check. Read more about asbestos.

You can take part if you:

  • are a resident of Western Australia
  • are 18 years of age or older
  • have access to a smartphone or tablet device with internet connectivity.

What will I need to do?

All you need to do is download ACM Check from the Apple Store or Google Play and then complete the questionnaire. ACM Check will ask questions about your house, possible sources of asbestos, the condition of potential asbestos-containing materials, and the likelihood that these materials will be disturbed.

It will take anywhere from five to 20 minutes to complete depending on the property. Your responses to these questions in ACM Check will be uploaded electronically via the internet to our database.

ACM Check for Apple

ACM Check for Android

Participant information statement

Do I have to take part if I download ACM Check?

No, you are able to turn data sharing off. You can turn data sharing on and off as many times as you like by going to the “Information” tab located in the bottom right-hand corner of the home screen, scrolling down, and clicking on the toggle button next to “Allow anonymous data collection”. If you turn it to the “off” position, no data is shared with Curtin University and you still have full access to ACM Check.

About asbestos

Asbestos is widely known to cause a number of health issues when individuals inhale significant amounts of asbestos fibres. Asbestos exposure is an important issue in the community due to asbestos having been used in a large number of household and building products before its use was banned in Australia.

These products can still be found in Western Australian homes and they present a health hazard when they are damaged or disturbed. However, we do not know how much asbestos-containing material is still found in the Western Australian housing stock, what condition these materials are in, and how many people are currently being exposed to asbestos in the home.

Who is doing this research?

This project is being conducted by PhD Candidate Matthew Govorko, Associate Professor Alison Reid, and Professor Lin Fritschi, School of Public Health, Curtin University, with input from the Environmental Health Directorate, Department of Health Western Australia.

Ethics approval

Curtin University Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) has approved this study (HREC number RDHS-89-15).