Footpath falls prove costly
More than 1500 people filed ACC claims in the past year after slipping on footpaths in Auckland.
In the year to July ACC paid out about $1.4 million on claims from Aucklanders that sighted falls on footpaths as the reason for injury. Wet leaves, oil, moss and algae are just some of the reasons for people taking a spill.
Data was captured by territory and included Auckland City, Manukau City, Papakura District, North Shore City, Waitakere City, and Rodney District.
Auckland footpaths are managed and cleaned by Auckland Transport (AT).
Mt Eden resident Fenella Tonkin said she slipped on dead flowers on Garry Rd about two months ago, breaking her arm in three places. The cost of her claim was ‘‘between $15,000 and $20,000’’ as of August 27 and was on-going, she said.
‘‘I have been paid by ACC while off work, I have had home care three days a week and until I am allowed to drive again, ACC are paying for taxis to take me to and from work,’’ Tonkin said.
Tonkin took to social media website Neighbourly after her accident, asking residents who had trees on their fenceline to rake up the dead and rotting flowers that fell on the footpath, like those that caused her fall.
Tonkin reported her accident to Auckland Council who referred her to AT.
Kingsland resident John Paynter said his steep street was a slipping hazard also.
‘‘My daughter slipped on a steel manhole on the footpath, she was fine, but traction was worsened by a neighbour’s spill of some type of oil that was not cleaned up and flowed down the street,’’ Paynter said.
AT spokesman James Ireland said fallen leaves were not the responsibility of the homeowner to clean up however, he encouraged people to help keep their neighbourhood clean, safe and tidy by doing so.
Streets and footpaths received extra sweeping during the autumn months due to high leaf fall. Outside of that time AT cleaned footpaths as requested, Ireland said.
‘‘If an incident is reported, complaints are investigated and dealt with as appropriate. This could be in the form of sweeping, waterblasting, application of wetand-forget if moss or algae is present, or absorbent laid if vehicle oils are present.’’
Fenella Tonkin slipped on this footpath in Mt Eden and broke her arm in three places.