Concrete Cancer Cover-up Ctd: Epidemic in Australia warning for New Zealand

While the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, the Ministry of Justice, the Cement and Concrete Assocation of New Zealand (CCANZ) and cement importer Drymix seems to be hoping this story will fade away, they only need to look across the ditch to see the potential scale of the problem.

It is no wonder they want to ensure this story never sees the light of day.

Image trying to explain to the Minister of Building and Housing that their flash new $40 million plus Manukau District Court upgrade is likely to be subject to concrete cancer.

In Australia, the Courier Mail is reporting about a Concrete Cancer Cover-Up;

An epidemic of concrete cancer in older buildings will bankrupt many high-rise unit owners, with blocks facing billions of dollars in repairs.

And there were worrying claims of a cover-up, with some body corporates accused of delibertately hiding telltale signs simply by painting over them.

An expert who specialises in detectng faults told me the cost of repairs to some buildings was greater than the value of the buildings. They face demolition.

New Zealand has a chance to get out in front of this, but all signs show a similar pattern of pretending there isn?t a problem will go away. It wont. ?

?When steel rusts, it takes up to three times its original volume. When the steel is embedded in concrete ? such as reinforcing steel in apartment blocks ? this swelling causes the concrete to crack, exposing more reinforcing steel and concrete to the elements.

The process repeats itself and spreads until the building is not safe to live in.

“Once water is in, it?s usually only a matter of time before the water breaks down into hydrogen and oxygen, leading to oxidisation,? Holden said.

Slight rust stains coming out of an otherwise innocent-looking concrete surface are often the first symptom of spalling (another name for concrete cancer).

? concrete cancer could be fixed but if it was allowed to spread, it became a costly nightmare.

And herein lies the problem and the solution.

Part of the solution starts by taking a simple core sample from the likes of the Manukau District Court, or Fonterra?s Waitoa UHT plant, or the Yashilli?s $250 million plant at Pokeno, getting them tested and address the problem before the rust sets in.