Air-Cell endorses suspension of foil insulation from HIP

News /
12 February 2010

Thermo reflective insulation company Air-Cell has endorsed the Federal Government’s decision to temporarily suspend foil insulation installations from its Home Insulation Program (HIP) until further consultation.

Air-Cell managing director Scott Gibson said he supported the Government’s emphasis on installers.

“Reflective foil products have been used safely in Australian homes for decades, and shoddy installers are now putting their staff and customers at risk.”

The Minister for the Environment Peter Garret yesterday emphasised that the Government’s concern is in relation to installation, not product, and that this measure is aimed at ensuring safety for everyone concerned.

“The product that’s going into the ceiling is a product which is agreed as being of appropriate quality and standard, but in these very few instances where installers may not be doing the job properly, and where there are safety risks for installers, I just want to be 100 per cent-plus sure.”

Mr Gibson fully supported the Government’s crackdown on rogue installers.

“The facts are that this is an issue concerning those elements of the industry that operate on the lowest cost base using low cost, unskilled and untrained labour. It has little if anything to do with the use of foil insulation. In fact, in two of the four cases, foil insulation was not being installed. Had simple, safe working practices been adhered to these tragedies could well have been avoided.

“Working in a roof space carries with it inherent risks regardless of the type of insulation or even the type of work. However mandated installer training for every individual installer from 12 February will alleviate this risk dramatically,” said Mr Gibson.

As a result of numerous issues with the HIP program, the Government has also announced that it will fund safety checks for every home installed with foil insulation, including any necessary fixes.

Mr Gibson said Air-Cell fully supported this measure.

“Although the majority of installers are fully certified and are doing the right thing, it is undeniable that a small group of rogue operators have caused immeasurable damage to the insulation industry. We welcome home safety checks to eliminate concerns.

“Again, we implore homeowners to do their research when it comes to insulation. It is vital that only approved installers are employed and fully compliant products are used.”

Air-Cell is still Australia’s only CodeMark certified reflective foil insulation, the highest level of independent accreditation. Air-Cell products have been used safely in Australia for 13 years.

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