Mysterious Disappearance of Yellow Stickers: Safety Concerns Rise in Cyclone-Damaged Te Tai Rāwhiti
Residents in Suspense Over Missing Yellow Stickers
In the region of Te Tai Rāwhiti, a wave of confusion and concern has arisen over the mysterious disappearance of yellow stickers from cyclone-damaged homes. These stickers, marking homes as uninhabitable, are solely the responsibility of local councils to attach and remove. The removal of these stickers implies the homes have been inspected, repaired, and deemed safe to live in again. However, some homeowners, like Dominique Baker of Te Karaka, have found the stickers missing without any official council intervention or notification.
Despite her attempts to investigate, Baker could not find any information on who removed the sticker from her house. She disregarded the council’s suggestion that it might have been blown away by the wind, noting that the tape which held it was still intact. Interestingly, posts on a local Facebook page revealed that she was not alone in this predicament, with two other residents experiencing the same issue.
Unofficial Removal of Stickers Could Lead to Hefty Fine
Addressing the uncertainty, Gisborne District Council’s Building Service Manager, Ian Petty, clarified the council’s position. He stressed that only the council has the authority to attach and remove these stickers, and they had not been conducting any removals. Therefore, the removal of these stickers by any other party is unofficial and doesn’t change the building’s status.
Importantly, Petty highlighted the potential consequences of violating this rule, including a fine of up to $5000. This serves as a stern reminder to residents and other parties to respect the regulations and procedures in place.
Safety Checklist: A Critical Process Not to be Overlooked
Petty further explained the conditions under which a yellow sticker can be officially removed, and residents allowed to move back in. The property must pass a six-step checklist designed to guarantee its safety. This checklist includes evaluations of the property’s wastewater and drinking water systems, the safety of electrical and gas installations, the dryness of framing, and the adequacy of under-house ventilation that is not affected by silt.
The existence of such a comprehensive checklist underscores the seriousness of the safety concerns in cyclone-damaged homes. It acts as an affirmation of the council’s commitment to ensuring the safety of its residents and highlights the potential risks associated with the unofficial removal of yellow stickers.
Unraveling the Mystery: A Call to Adhere to Safety Regulations
The phenomenon of disappearing yellow stickers has brought attention to the importance of adhering to safety protocols in the aftermath of devastating cyclones. The mystery remains unsolved, but the incident serves as an important reminder of why such regulations are put in place. It also highlights the potential dangers of moving back into homes that have not been officially declared safe.
While the search for answers continues, residents are urged to comply with the safety procedures laid out by the council. The unofficial removal of yellow stickers not only undermines these procedures but also poses a significant risk to the safety of the residents.
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