Wheelchair user pleased council will fix footpath ramp

Richard Todd
Richard Todd
A wheelchair user who spilled from his chair trying to navigate a well-worn detour says the response from the Dunedin City Council since he raised his concerns publicly had been "marvellous".

For the past four years, Musselburgh resident Richard Todd has been forced to take a 50m detour on his way to the dairy because of a 5cm lip at the end of a ramp up on to the footpath in Tainui Rd and last month he fell from his chair after sliding down a steep driveway in the wet after a rain shower.

Mr Todd has antisynthetase syndrome, a rare chronic autoimmune condition that affects the muscles and other parts of the body and has affected his mobility.

He has largely been using a motorised wheelchair to get around for about the past four years. Throughout that time he has raised his concerns with the council about the ramp on to the footpath at the intersection of Tainui Rd and Marlow St, which has forced him to detour along Tainui Rd.

After being approached by the Otago Daily Times for comment last month, council transport group manager Jeanine Benson said learning of Mr Todd’s accident was "distressing" and the council was investigating a temporary solution despite Tainui Rd and Marlow St not being part of the council’s priority strategic pedestrian network.

Mr Todd said yesterday he had met with council staff at the site after his fall and he was now confident work would be done.

"I think they were thinking that I wanted the earth rather than just a simple fix," he said.


Pleased this is being sorted but note that he only got DCC action once he had "raised his concerns publically". For some time, he had been asking the DCC privately for these repairs/upgrades. But once the council was embarrassed by having their inaction and ineptitude publicised, suddenly things started to happen. It shouldn't have to be like that. What an appalling organisation.

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