Set netting, farm dangers, cyclists

Last updated 14:00 22/11/2012

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Avoiding cyclists

While driving home from a great morning fishing about 10.30am, sitting on 100kmh with two other cars in front of me, all of a sudden they hit the brakes just before the first bend north of Seventeen Valley, near the Weld Pass. Hello, I thought.

There was a pair of cyclists riding on the right-hand side of the white line. There was about a metre of paved road on the left of the white line. As it was on a bend, it was unsafe for the cars to pass them. How dumb is that?

And before you racing cyclists get fired up with words like, "We are allowed on the road", think of this: if I was a car doing the same thing, ie holding up traffic, it's an offence.

As cyclists have to abide by the same road rules as all cars etc, what gives you the right to be different?

It's dangerous for both you and others, except when it comes to car hits bike - there's only one result. Aye, it's a big ouch.

NEIL WILSON

Blenheim

Farm dangers

The dangers for children on farms were highlighted again this week with the release of a coroner's report into the tragic death of toddler Jack Tatham, who was trampled by a cow after letting himself out of a safe area in a milking shed, where he had been placed by his parents while they performed a quick task.

While the coroner found no fault on the part of the parents, their sad loss is a grim reminder that farms can be hazardous places to live and work.

Rural Women NZ members offer the family our sincere condolences, and we are taking up the coroner's call for publicity to be given to the case, to raise awareness of this type of danger.

With nine work-related deaths on farms in the first eight months of this year, we all need to be vigilant. And extra thought needs to be given to the safety of children and visitors to farms.

Many accidents involve vehicles and machinery, including quad bikes, as well as injuries from animal handling and falls.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's agriculture sector action plan is a good place to start looking at how each of us can reduce the risks to our families, farm visitors, farm workers and ourselves.

As the season is coming when the town cousins visit the country cousins, we at Rural Women New Zealand feel that this is a timely warning to all.

PAM THOMLINSON

National councillor

Rural Women NZ

Set netting

The Marlborough Recreational Fishers' Association fully supports Terry Schwass' letter to do with the ban on recreational set netting [Express, November 14].

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There are no cases of dolphins being caught in recreational set nets in east Marlborough, and hence no justification for the ban.

The sour note is that the ban discriminates against only one sector, while commercial and customary fishers can continue to set nets. In addition, recreational nets are limited to 60 metres in length, while commercial nets can be 500m to 1000m.

Which net would be most likely to catch a dolphin?

It is important that Colin King, the local MP, takes up this inequality on behalf of the thousands of recreational fishers in his electorate.

LAURIE STEVENSON

Marlborough Recreational Fishers Association

Abortion deaths It is a tragedy that Savita Halappanavar died from septicaemia in a Catholic hospital in Ireland. Irish doctors have a legal obligation to save the life of a mother, even if that risks the life of her baby.

There is an international media frenzy implying that Catholic teaching is responsible for the woman's death.

It is not.

The Catholic Church teaches that it is always wrong to kill the innocent, and that medical care should protect the life of both patients, the mother and her unborn child.

Ireland commendably has strict laws to protect the right to life of its precious unborn children. It also has the world's best maternal health record.

A miscarriage and infection can be managed by proper medical treatment. Abortion is not medicine; it does not treat or cure any pathology.

If we are truly concerned about women's health, we should be outraged by those many women harmed or killed every week through legal and illegal abortions around the world.

Why does the media promote a culture of death by ignoring these tragic deaths from botched abortions?

KEN ORR

Spokesman

Right to Life

Christchurch

- © Fairfax NZ News

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