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Thursday December 7, 2017

Neighbours ride into storm of conflict over house bus

inbrief news Local candidate also Local Hero Southern ward by-election candidate Laurie Foon received a Kiwibank Local Hero Award at a ceremony at The Beehive on Monday. The Kiwibank Local Hero Award aims to identify and reward everyday people doing extraordinary things in their local communities. Laurie was recognised for her commitment to sustainable business, and her contribution to promoting Wellington as a Fair Trade city.

App to aid child asthma management

Left: Lawrie Foley behind his house bus as seen from the middle of Humber St at its intersection with Derwent St. Right: The view of the street without the house bus. PHOTOS: Jamie Adams By Jamie Adams

A house bus that has been parked on an Island Bay street for nearly two years has caused friction in the neighbourhood. Derwent St resident Aniela Mackiewicz is fed up with the perceived danger of crossing the street at its intersection with Humber St into her driveway located directly opposite the intersection, both as a driver and pedestrian. She says the height of the bus blocks the view of approaching cars, making safe crossing impossible. “In 2016 from when I first saw it here my concern was straight away how it blocked my view as I was coming into our driveway in Derwent Street,” Aniela says. “A couple of times when pulling out I’ve had to slam on the brakes. “Cyclists behind me often abuse me about why I’m not going because I can’t indicate – I’m

going straight ahead.” Other factors in her give-way dilemma are the slight “s-bend” at the intersection, the narrowing of Derwent St south of it and another road only 80 metres away, Moselle St. “Cars come so fast down from Moselle Strreet.” Aniela had contacted Wellington city council about whether its location is appropriate and was told it was parked legally, despite it taking up two spaces. Other neighbours she has spoken to have also complained about the bus’s location. One of them said she often had to hold back her six-year-old son when they crossed the road to get to their house. “It’s a big difference when the bus is away occasionally.” The bus’s owner Lawrie Foley says the situation is the result of an unfortunate combination of circumstance after he purchased

it in 2015. “Me and my wife Francie had intended to rent our house out and go around New Zealand in the bus. “But the seller had been less than honest about it and when I got it back here there were lot of problems with it. The greywater sink had to be taken out. I’ve still got things to do to it now.” However the bigger blow came last year when Francie developed health problems that required hospital treatment and ongoing local care, further halting their plans. Lawrie was devastated that the issue had been brought to his attention via the council and the media when nobody in the neighbourhood actually spoke to him in person. “We’ve been living here for 36 years and we’ve always got on well with everybody. “We received a nasty anony-

mous letter and yet not one person has come to me say we’ve got a problem.” He received a ticket from the council but it was later waived due to lack of evidence that it was a hindrance. While Derwent St does narrow south of its junction with Humber St, the carriageway is still eight metres wide between parked vehicles. “The Parade is only six metres wide,”Lawrie says. He is uncertain as to when he and Francie will be able to finally head away in their home away from home while she battles her health issues. “I’d love to say we are going away in three months but I can’t.” Lawrie believes the best solution is installing a pedestrian crossing at the corner. A council spokesperson says a crossing is not planned due to low concentration of traffic.

My Asthma, a new app developed by the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation NZ, is a beneficial tool to assist with asthma management in children and adolescents. The app has just been updated with a customisable Child Asthma Action Plan, to be completed with a health professional and saved to a smart device such as a mobile phone. The digital Asthma Action Plans can then be accessed at any time through the users’ smart device, and easily shared by email to caregivers, teachers, and sports coaches. Launched on World Asthma Day (May 2) the My Asthma app is available to download in Google Play or Apple App Store.

Reserve fishing fine A public tip-off led to the conviction of a man who illegally fished in Taputeranga Marine Reserve. Xiaobin Sun pleaded guilty to taking 29 fish in May. He was fined $1000, plus $130 in court costs, in the Wellington District Court on Friday. Department of Conservation spokesman Jack Mace says DOC has “no tolerance” for people who fish in a marine reserve. It appears Xiaobin Sun did not intentionally set out to fish inside the reserve but Jack says “that’s no excuse”. Taking marine life from a reserve can result in three months in prison, a fine of up to $10,000 or both.


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