Image for Dear Sally McManus and loyal comrades ...

Spirit of Tasmania stevedore (46yo father of three) Torren McMaster, became known as an ‘Involuntary’ whistleblower after reporting to his employer QUBE, and alerting Maritime Union Australia, that workers, passengers and livestock on TT Line vessels were being recklessly and negligently exposed to the toxic effects of Diesel Particulate Matter (DPM) and Diesel Fume Emissions.

There are twenty known carcinogens present in DPM.

Due to extensive modifications to both ships, workers were operating in confined space(s) with hazardous substances with no “confined spaces” education or training, procedures, breathing apparatus, protective clothing, adequate ventilation or regulations being observed or adhered to.   

North Melbourne, December 2016. Mr McMaster and his (silent) witness, hand-delivered a 20-page Spirit of Tasmania DPM Industrial Report to Maritime Union Australia, Deputy National Secretary, Will Tracy ... the MUA can never say, upon oath ... we never knew ...

Torren was bullied and harassed by thugs, then sacked. He has suffered assaults and death threats, then when he refused to ‘go away’ his home and a co-workers’ home were both shot at! Welcome to democracy.

And Torren still fights his cause, which is wholesome and simple - to have all his former, 70-odd Spirit of Tasmania stevedores take charge of their health and obtain full ‘independent’ health screenings; including blood and hair samples, chest Xrays and neurological assesment.

Ten deaths in seven years is an alarming cluster.

As the ACTU and MUA have not responded to my emails, they are now for public scrutiny.

*Kevin Francis Moylan is a Registered Psychiatric Nurse 1980 (Melb) - 2018. Author ‘One Flew Over the Kookaburra’s Nest’. Non-fiction 2nd edition 2017. - A story about what nasty and evil things happens to ‘Involuntary Whistleblowers in Tasmania.

Kevin’s letters ...

Dear Sally, ACTU Secretary and Maritime Union officials.

On Friday 22nd June. ACTU official, Nathaniel Gaudin, advised Mr McMaster by phone; who has repeatedly requested an ‘in good faith’ personal meeting with you Sally, the following statements: “This is way-out of our league” and “we normally don’t get involved in matters like this.”

The Spirit of Tasmania ‘matters’ are these:

Jan 29, 2018. 18 prized polo horses were apparently gassed to death by diesel fume emissions - Autopsy results remain ‘top secret’. Minister Courtney, point-blank, refuses to publicly disclose them. The DPIPWE stated, “It may take years.”

Mr McMaster claims that 10 MUA workers (six he knew personally) on the Spirit of Tasmania vessels - have died in the past seven years. He believes this health and safety cluster of chronic illness and premature death is from the toxic effects of Diesel Particulate Matter, DPM. I have supplied ppm evidence of toxic levels, prior.

Current workers have the highest sick leave in the country. As yet, none have been comprehensively examined with full blood screenings, Chronic Obstructive Airway Disease, COAD, neurological, endocronogical or reproductive disorders and blood dyscrasias. Depression, Anxiety and Suicide(s).
Mr McMaster claims that in 2013, ship samples of DPM were independently scientifically analysed to reveal in a written report - Three types/strains of ASBESTOS detected - OTHER Matter contained several known Carcinogens.

2017. Mr McMaster claims, another Spirit of Tasmania ship sample was again independently analysed - revealing ASBESTOS and Carcinogenic compounds. Currently, sixty-odd MUA workers are exposed to that toxic workplace every day. Passengers embark their cars on those same decks.

June 2018. A hired labor task force of foreign workers was employed to collect DPM and scrub clean the Spirit of Tasmania - none wore masks or protective clothing.

June 2018. Mr McMaster has discovered that his latest DPM sample he sent to asbestos audit in Brisbane to be scientifically analysed - has gone missing!

In fact, no Industrial Chemist in Australia, independent or other, will go near or test Spirit of Tasmania DPM. One said, “We don’t do government stuff.”

Sally, Mr McMaster will supply the written reports and evidence, when he meets with you. He’s been screaming out for Union help, for seven anguished years.

Sacked! Death threats! Homes shot at! Terrorised and traumatised! Please do not dismiss or turn your back on him again. He is a real Comrade who needs protection. That’s why Trade Unions used to exist ... The ACTU can never say, “Oh my god, I never knew.” 

In good faith Kevin Francis Moylan

C.C to previous listed recipients: Honourable Ged Kearney, MHA Batman. Whistleblower and social justice advocate.

Thanks Michael  

Re Spirit of Tasmania and contaminated ships.

It’s encouraging that the Maritime Union is finally confronting these serious long-term issues, and will now hopefully, cease all overt and covert reprisals against those ethical messenger(s) of very bad news. In the public interest only.

2013 and 2017. Diesel Particulate Matter analysis revealed in a written report, three types of asbestos and several known Carcinogens.

July 2018. Diesel Particulate Matter analysis has also revealed the presence of ‘Synthetic Mineral Fibres’.

Yet to clarified by scientific investigation, what this really means and what adverse toxic risks to human health, have or may continue to be of occupational health and concern. Until the real studies are done…we are only guessing and hoping.

The Occupational Health and Safety Act describes ‘Standard Procedures’ when workers are exposed to harmful, hazardous and toxic foreign substances and/or DPM dust.

Maritime training, educational programmes and risk management must be provided to all exposed workers.

Levels of DPM and other matter - asbestos or carcinogens must be regularly monitored and safely recorded.

Breathing Apparatus and other aids must be utilised. Ventilation must be adequate.

The Occupational Hygienist must then supply all at-risk workers with full health screenings, with all records kept for 30 years.

For whatever reason(s), it appears The MUA have failed for a decade, the importance of such basic protections.

As a Registered Nurse since 1980, I advise free full health screenings for some 60 - 70 workers is the first decent step to righting some historical wrongs. Otherwise we will never know - until they’re dead or chronically ill. Problem solved, for some.

May 2018. A Spirit of Tasmania vessel was scraped and scrubbed clean of DPM and other foreign matter, by a hire labour company of foreign workers, employed by EPTEC. No MUA workers were ‘directly’ involved.

None of these desperate foreign workers had a clue or inclination what they were being exposed to. No informed consent.

None wore any protective masks or clothing. None have any Industrial, Legal or Medical recourse. On their own.

May I suggest they also be afforded full physical examinations; and if not, why not?

The ACTU is most welcome to send a DPM dust sample to a fully independent chemist for analysis.

But not in this country please ... No-one in Australia will test Spirit of Tasmania DPM.

Not only are those ships toxic - but the whole pathetic system is toxic with lies, deceit and cover-ups.

When are you able to meet with Torren McMaster? Several serious matters remain unresolved.

  In good faith and enduring patience     Kev Moylan
c.c. Torren McMaster

On Fri, Jul 6, 2018 at 11:29 AM, Michael Borowick JP wrote:

G’day Kevin,

Sally McManus thanks you for your correspondence and has asked me to respond on her behalf.

I understand that the MUA are already acting upon the serious matters referred to in your email.


Michael Borowick JP
Assistant Secretary

Australian Council of Trade Unions

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