Defe­cat­ing in dunes ‘not on’

Pa¯ pa¯ moa res­i­dent dis­gusted to catch man ‘in the act’ at re­serve with toi­lets nearby

Bay of Plenty Times - - LOCAL NEWS - Zoe Hunter

Peo­ple have been spot­ted defe­cat­ing in the dunes near Pa¯pa¯moa Beach. A Pa¯pa¯moa res­i­dent, who wished to re­main anony­mous, was walk­ing her dogs in Tay­lor Re­serve about 8.30am on Sun­day when she caught “a guy in the act” in the sand dunes.

“I shouted quite loudly, ‘That’s dis­gust­ing. What do you think you are do­ing?’,” she said.

The man said there were no toi­let fa­cil­i­ties for him to use and ex­plained he could not hold on. The man’s friend apol­o­gised and the woman di­rected the men to the nearby toi­lets.

The woman said peo­ple on social me­dia had slammed free­dom campers for do­ing the dirty deed. How­ever, she be­lieved the two men she spot­ted were fish­er­men.

The res­i­dent walked her dogs in the re­serve daily and said peo­ple should be pun­ished for defe­cat­ing in the area.

“It is not on. My kids run and play in those sand dunes,” she said. “If we have to pick up af­ter our dogs then peo­ple should be made to pick up af­ter them­selves.”

Tau­ranga City Coun­cil by­laws, park­ing and cus­tomer ser­vice team leader Stu­art Good­man said the coun­cil re­ceived a com­plaint re­gard­ing Tay­lor Re­serve on Sun­day.

Last month, two com­plaints were re­ceived re­lat­ing to peo­ple uri­nat­ing or defe­cat­ing on the fore­shore op­po­site Alexan­der Place.

Coun­cil parks and recre­ation man­ager Mark Smith was dis­ap­pointed to hear peo­ple had been defe­cat­ing in Tay­lor Re­serve, es­pe­cially be­cause it had a pub­lic toi­let.

“Dunes are frag­ile spa­ces, and us­ing them as a toi­let can dis­turb the en­vi­ron­ment as well as pose a pub­lic health hazard,” he said.

“[The] coun­cil main­tains more than 70 pub­lic toi­lets across the city, and we urge peo­ple to use these rather than soil­ing pub­lic places.”

Pa¯ pa¯ moa/mount Maun­ganui ward coun­cil­lor Steve Mor­ris said there was a lack of toi­lets along the stretch of Pa¯pa¯moa beach. There were three pub­lic toi­lets along the Pa¯pa¯moa coast­line — one each at Tay­lor, Motiti and Simp­son re­serves, he said.

“It is a bit of an is­sue when you con­sider how long the coast­line is and the num­ber of peo­ple who are here,” he said. “But it still doesn’t ex­cuse peo­ple do­ing that right next to the toi­lets.”

Mor­ris said $13 mil­lion was be­ing spent on up­grad­ing re­serves in the Pa¯pa¯moa area. The coun­cil was also up­grad­ing pub­lic toi­lets in the area.

Toi Te Ora Pub­lic Health med­i­cal of­fi­cer of health Dr Phil Shoemack said proper dis­posal of hu­man waste ● Must be in a self-con­tained ve­hi­cle dis­play­ing an NZS5465:2001 self­con­tain­ment war­rant and any sub­se­quent re­place­ment cer­ti­fi­ca­tion re­quire­ments ● Parked legally ● No de­posit­ing in or around a pub­lic lit­ter re­cep­ta­cle of any house­hold refuse ● All waste and lit­ter gen­er­ated must be re­moved from the area ● Do not pre­vent oth­ers from un­der­tak­ing le­git­i­mate ac­tiv­i­ties in the lo­ca­tion ● Do not stay in any one re­serve or coun­cil car park or in any one street for more than two nights per cal­en­dar month ● No light­ing of any fires at the site ● Must com­ply with the noise re­quire­ments set out in the City Plan for Open Space Zones ● Com­ply with all of the par­tic­u­lar re­stric­tions which ap­ply to free­dom camp­ing at that lo­ca­tion ● Coun­cil can is­sue in­stant $200 fines to any­one caught breach­ing the free­dom camp­ing by­law. You may also be li­able for pros­e­cu­tion. ● Source: Tau­ranga City Coun­cil was im­por­tant.

Shoemack said hu­man fae­ces car­ried mi­cro-or­gan­isms that could eas­ily con­tam­i­nate wa­ter sup­plies and soils, which could lead to dis­eases such as gi­a­r­dia­sis and be spread from per­son to per­son.

Photo / Ge­orge No­vak

Peo­ple have been spot­ted defe­cat­ing at Pa¯ pa¯ moa’s Tay­lor Re­serve.

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