This Australian town once had a thriving population of around 20,000 people. Its prosperity was based on its highly successful asbestos mine. It was abandoned in the 1960s when the dangers of asbestos were discovered, though not before an estimated 1,000 of its residents (5% of the population) had died of asbestos-related diseases!
The town’s name has been removed from official maps and road signs. Today, the abandoned mine, town, surrounding area, and the air are all still contaminated with the deadly asbestos dust.