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Caution Urged at Kettle Park Dunes


Caution Urged at Kettle Park Dunes


Dunedin (Friday, 19 November 2010) – The DCC was advised on Wednesday by engineering consultants, Tonkin & Taylor, that industrial material buried under the Kettle Park playing fields may have been exposed on the seaward dune at Kettle Park. Indications are that there is a possibility of a health risk to the public with any prolonged or on-going exposure to these dunes.

The Project Team has been gathering information on the extent of the old landfill site at Kettle Park. Recently, it commissioned studies by Tonkin & Taylor to determine the boundaries and types of material in the old landfill site. This involved boreholes and samples being taken below the playing fields and the surrounding area, including the adjacent dune face.

The studies indicate that there is construction material and industrial waste under the clay cap which covers the playing fields. This was suspected, and the studies confirm that the waste is safely covered and there are no health issues whatsoever with the playing fields.

The investigations have, however, identified that these buried materials have been exposed on the seaward dune, probably as a consequence of compression over time.

These are preliminary findings and further studies will be commissioned immediately. However, indications are that there may be a possibility of health risk to the public with any prolonged exposure to the dunes adjacent to the playing fields at Kettle Park.

Any risk relates only to prolonged and on-going exposure, but there is nonetheless a need for caution. It should be emphasised that there is no risk to the users of the adjacent sports grounds at Kettle Park.

The engineers who carried out the investigations have recommended that the DCC:

“carry out further investigations immediately to confirm whether the samples taken are representative and that any significant human health risk exists. A statistically based investigation will provide a robust basis for decision making about the management of the landfill and the coastal dunes."

The evaluation made by Tonkin & Taylor has been on the basis of a limited sample data and therefore must be regarded as preliminary only. However, it indicates that:

long term exposure on sections of the dunes at Kettle Park may present a human health risk; and that

it appears unlikely that the exposed materials present an immediate risk.

Signage is being prepared and will be installed at the Kettle Park beach access points and at all other access points along Ocean Beach as a matter of urgency. It is anticipated the signage will include the information below:


Sign Number One (at the Kettle Park area)

Caution

Members of the public are urged to stay clear of this area of dunes.

Preliminary studies into the old landfill site in this area show some industrial contaminants on the seaward side of these dunes. Until further studies have been completed, the Dunedin City Council advises that there may be a health risk to members of the public from prolonged and on-going exposure to the dunes in this area.

Further information is available by at www.dunedin.govt.nz/council-projects/oceanbeach or by phoning 477 4000.


Sign Number Two (at other beach access points)

Caution

You are advised to stay clear of and avoid all contact with the dunes adjacent to Moana Rua Road.

Preliminary studies into the old landfill site in that area show some industrial contaminants on the seaward side of those dunes. Until further studies have been completed, the Dunedin City Council advises that there may be a health risk to members of the public from prolonged and on-going exposure to the dunes in that area.

Further information is available by at www.dunedin.govt.nz/council-projects/oceanbeach or by phoning 477 4000.


ENDS

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