“A year after 1080 poison rained from the sky as Reefton sisters were enjoying a picnic near Kokiri, both are still experiencing ill health and have lodged a claim with ACC.”
NOTE: Liver, throat & thyroid problems, weight loss, a thinner optical nerve and ongoing nausea are just some of the health effects these women are experiencing.
Still the authorities minimize the risks with this poison. Some NZ Midwives back in 2008 were warning women to leave town prior to a 1080 drop saying, “Nobody can guarantee this substance does not cross the placental barrier.” It is known from research that 1080 has caused deformities in animal fetuses. Not something any mother would want to risk surely, and yet we are seldom told these things. Instead we are told there is no proven link between 1080 and the said health problems. We have the same scenario with glyphosate, a commonly used herbicide ingredient that independent research indicates it is carcinogenic. As a consequence, instead of erring on the side of caution the powers that be insist it is all good. Carry on as usual. The way of corporations…EWR
A year after 1080 poison rained from the sky as Reefton sisters were enjoying a picnic near Kokiri, both are still experiencing ill health and have lodged a claim with ACC.
The official public health report into the incident has still not been released.
Gwen Gardner and her sister Kathleen Bartlett were picnicking on Maori Gully Rd in June 2014 while checking out a property for sale, when a helicopter overhead opened a monsoon bucket and dropped poison pellets, some of which fell around their vehicle. The women were close by at the time.
They remained in the area for several hours as they did not think it could have been 1080, partly because they say a sign was outdated.
The sisters say they felt ill within 40 minutes of the aerial drop, but did not immediately associate it with 1080 poisoning. Medical tests undertaken afterwards by the locum Reefton GP showed Mrs Bartlett’s liver was not functioning as it should.
After a year, they are still experiencing ongoing health problems and have ACC assessing a claim from them – the first relating to 1080 in a decade.
They are still being monitored by the Reefton doctor.
Mrs Bartlett was recently referred to an ear, nose and throat specialist. She says he told her that her tongue was still swollen and her nose irritated, and she had “definitely been exposed to something”.
Blood tests on their livers and thyroids show they are still well outside the normal range. An optician has told Mrs Bartlett that her optical nerve is thinner.
Mrs Bartlett has gone from 73kg to 57kg, partly because of ongoing nausea and digestive problems.
As part of their ACC claim, the women had to undergo a lengthy assessment, carried out by an occupational therapist. Questions included their marital status, how many children they had, and their qualifications. Their application is still before ACC.
They are also asking why the Community and Public Health report has still not been released after so long.
Medical officer of health Cheryl Brunton said nobody was happy to see the report drag on, but it had to be done properly.
Most of it was completed, but a matter raised by the women themselves, not directly connected with Dr Brunton’s investigation, had “complicated” things.
Dr Brunton said she would be able to give Mrs Gardner and Mrs Bartlett an update shortly.
ACC cannot release private information, but said in these types of claims an occupational physician would undertake a comprehensive assessment of the client’s current medical conditions.
“From there it would likely proceed to an external toxicology panel to issue an opinion.”