Our regular readers may remember the recent incidents where contractors and members of the public have had 1080 and weedkiller dumped over them from helicopters whilst out and about in New Zealand’s 100% Pure countryside.
Well it’s happened again, this time to a walker, Robin Simenauer, who says he was breathing in herbicide for around 40 mins whilst on the track in Karori last Saturday.
He told the Dom Post that he’d started out at 10:25 am:
“”I’d only been on the track for 90 seconds and the helicopter came hovering almost directly over my head and started firing off this herbicide spray.” He said it was disgraceful no warning signs were at the entrance to the 12-kilometre hilltop walkway, which links Karori and Johnsonville. “Imagine if you had little kids up there. Some people are totally allergic to sprays.”
Russell Pierce, a farmer who owns the land on one side of the track, said the weedkiller wasn’t really harmful unless ingested.”
But he didn’t say what this chemical was called, nor what “really harmful unless ingested” means and did he take into account Mr Simenauer’s exposure time?
“Spraying was the only way to effectively control gorse, he said. It should have been finished by 8am – before people normally used the track – but had been delayed by four hours because of a problem with the spraying machine.
“It’s just one of those things of being near a city … walkers have got to take their chances. If people see a chopper doing spraying, I suggest they turn around and go home.”
Mr Pierce said he was not required to put up signs at the track entrance because the spraying was a sufficient distance from houses. He had no problems with people crossing his land.
Wellington City Council spokesman Richard MacLean said he understood public concerns about spraying but Mr Pierce had always been a responsible landowner.
The council would consider signs for any future spraying.”
So there you go. Want to take a walk in the NZ countryside? you’ll have to take your chances that you don’t get poisoned whilst you’re out there, because if you do it’s your fault for living near a city and being caught unawares out in the open.
100% Pure, myth debunked.