Urgent plea to fix Wellsford footpath hazards

Joelene MacGillivray with her hazardous pavers petition in Rodney Street.

Slippery when wet – rain can wreak havoc. Trip hazard – broken bricks.Slippery when wet – rain can wreak havoc. Trip hazard – broken bricks.

A Wellsford businesswoman is calling for safer footpath surfaces along the town’s main street, after  a catalogue of trips, slips and falls by pedestrians.

Joelene MacGillivray, who runs GoodTenant Property Management in Rodney Street, has started an online and paper petition, and will make a deputation to this month’s Rodney Local Board meeting on July 21.

“I’m sick of seeing people slip or trip on the pavers,” she says. “It’s been an ongoing issue since they laid them. A couple of weeks ago, an old lady took a slip right outside the shop.

“It’s a massive health and safety issue, and there have been some quite serious injuries.”

Joelene says the yellow brick path becomes like a skating rink whenever it rains

“They’re something you’d stick round your house, not on a main street,” she says. “They are such a slippery surface. You see it all the time. I know a lot of locals are fed-up with it.

“What we’d like to see is the bricks removed and a new surface.”

She is calling for anyone who has slipped, tripped or fallen on the Rodney Street pavements to get in touch with her to help illustrate the scale of the problem.

“There was a lady a couple of months ago who broke her wrist and suffered a lot of other damage.

Another one had to have an ambulance, and another broke her foot,” she says.

“That’s only the ones we know about. The more people that come forward with reports, the better.”

Joelene says she already has the backing of Wellsford Plus and Rodney Local Board member Colin Smith, and she is seeking the Board’s support to advocate to Auckland Transport (AT) for the paths to be fixed.

AT media relations manager Mark Hannan says AT is aware of the issue and is currently looking at what it can do to improve the friction of the footpath surface.

AT’s footpaths and walkway guidelines state that AT has an ongoing maintenance programme to address footpath defects and “repair works shall be undertaken whenever a trip hazard or other safety issue has been identified”.

If anyone has an incident to report, Joelene can be contacted on 027 352 0081 or email checks@goodtenant.co.nz The petition can be found at www.petitions.nz/wellsford_town_pavers_a_health_and_safety_hazard

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