The buggers at Fairfax have given the Rotorua District Council an unjustified rasp in a report on a kid who has found out the hard way what happens when gravity kicks in. If you fall – in this case, alas, into a hot pool – you can hurt yourself. Seriously.
The eight-year-old boy fell into a hot pool in Kuirau Park on Sunday and was severely burnt on his entire body.
He is in Auckland’s Middlemore Hospital in a “stable but serious” condition. Alf hopes he has a speedy recovery.
But the first sentence of the report at Stuff implies it was the council’s fault and something should be done to stop it happening again.
More than that, it implies the council can’t be bothered doing anything unless someone formally complains about the boy’s mishap.
Here’s how Stuff starts its report –
Despite a boy suffering extensive burns after falling into a geothermal pool in a Rotorua park, Rotorua District Council says it cannot make changes to prevent further accidents unless a complaint is made.
The bloody council won’t budge because it is bound by red tape and bureaucracy.
You can be damned sure that if the council wanted to raise its rates, it would not wait until someone formally complained and/or called for higher rates.
But read on and you will find the council has good reason not to go charging in to do something to stop another mishap.
The reason it that it has no idea where the accident happened and hence has no idea what it should be doing to prevent a a recurrence.
Council parks and recreation manager Garry Page said yesterday that the council had little information about the incident because it had not yet been reported to it or the police.
“We’re uncertain of where exactly in the park it happened or what the circumstances were around how it happened. We don’t know any of that,” he said.
“We can’t do anything more until we find out more about it.”
This Page bloke has expressed confidence the hot pools are safe.
Obviously they are not too safe if you happen to step in or fall into them.
But his point is that you would have to ignore all the safety measures already taken to find yourself landing in hot water and mud.
“Within Kuirau Park we’re confident that all our hot pools are well fenced off and people just can’t stumble into them.
“We’ve gone around and done an inspection of them all and there’s no fences damaged and there’s no new hot-spots blown out. We’re quite confident that what we’ve got there is quite safe as long as people stay behind those fences.”
Page is appealing for anyone who has information about how the boy fell into the pool to come forward so a further investigation can take place.
So the council is not being as indifferent as the Stuff report would have us believe with its first sentence.
Nor as inactive.
Alf is left with the strong suspicion the kid fell into the pool because he went where he shouldn’t have gone. So who was supposed to be supervising him?