The Electrical Trades Union in Australia fears hundreds of electricians have contracted mesothelioma from working on meter boards which may contain asbestos.
The ETU has issued a warning to its members and wants the states to carry out an audit of meter boards in government buildings.
The ABC reports there are potentially thousands of electrical boards around the country with asbestos in them.
ETU assistant national secretary Allen Hicks said too many members have contracted mesothelioma over the years.
''If there's a risk, any risk at all, of exposure to asbestos then we would certainly recommend our members not work on those boards till such time as it's been remedied," he said.