'A real concern' - Dangerous toys put under spotlight by NZ Commerce Commission

The Commerce Commission is putting out a warning on the safety of toys sold in New Zealand, after retailer 123 Mart landed a $337,000 fine for dangerous toys.

While the retail chain has since gone into liquidation, the Commerce Commission says it's not the only offender.

Commerce Commission's Anna Rawlings says toys can pose a lot of dangers parents may not be aware of.

"We've undertaken more than 200 product inspections across 130 stores throughout the country and we do have a number of active investigations that we expect will resort in further enforcement activity," Ms Rawlings says.

Toys are put through a rigorous testing process, with investigators checking the products for small parts and performing torque and drop tests.

The commission says putting a label on an unsafe toy is not enough to get around the regulations.

Sue Chetwin is the chief executive of Consumer New Zealand who says dangerous toys are flooding the market, and they do not always come from low-cost stores.

"I think parents probably think when they're out shopping that the fact that these things are on the shop shelves, that they have been vetted and they are safe so it's okay for them to buy them," she says.

The Commerce Commission says it's difficult for consumers to judge for themselves how safe a toy is, so the market must make sure they comply.

"A number of retailers that we've visited have been unaware of their legal obligations and have no compliance process in place, and that's a real concern to us," Ms Rawlings says.

Consumers have been advised to shop at stores with good safety standards and to check toys for small parts which could break off or become a choking hazard.

The Commerce Commission says there are dangerous toys on the market which often pose a choking hazard. Source: 1 NEWS



'Disgusting' treatment says woman forced to give birth to dead baby at Rotorua Hospital with no help

A complaint has been made to the Health and Disability Commission over the case of a woman who was forced to give birth to a stillborn child with no medical help at Rotorua Hospital.

Jamie Bowman sat in the room holding her dead baby boy for 25 minutes afterwards.

Stuff reports the Taupō woman's ordeal started eight days earlier, on March 1, when she had a scan and found her baby's heart had stopped beating.

She was referred to Rotorua Hospital obstetrics the next day for a dilation and curettage.

Ms Bowman said she had to explain to four or five staff members why she was there, was told another scan was, then wasn't needed, and eventually told to go home by an obstetrician who said he was only training.

Ms Bowman returned to Rotorua Hospital five days later to take the first of two pills that manage late miscarriages.

"By then he had already been dead inside me for who knows how long," Ms Bowman said.

Her mother drove her to Rotorua Hospital for her second dose on March 8, but she went into labour on the way and was told on arrival the nurses were changing shifts and would help when they could.

Ms Bowman gave birth soon after with only her mother there.

"It is absolutely disgusting people can treat mothers this way and get away with it. We were left completely alone and not a single person wanted to help," Ms Bowman said.

A complaint has been made to the Health and Disability Commission.

Lakes District Health Board said Ms Bowman's treatment is being investigated.

"Lakes DHB always regrets when patients do not have a good experience during their visit to one of our hospitals," the board's risk and clinical governance director Dr Sharon Kletchko told Stuff.

"We sincerely regret any distress for this patient and her partner." 

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Washout could affect Napier to Wairoa railway reopening

Kiwirail could have to delay the re-opening of the Napier to Wairoa railway line after recent severe weather has washed out part of the track.

An section of the track is suspended in mid-air after heavy rain earlier this month washed the earth out from beneath it.

"The washout happened just north of Raupunga during the severe weather which hit the region earlier this month. It extends over a distance of around 45 metres," a spokesperson from Kiwirail said.

"Our teams are continuing to assess the damage and any impact it may have on the planned reopening date for the line."

Kiwirail initially stated the mothballed logging line would be back in action by December. 

About 50 metres of track was undermined by heavy rain, potentially delaying the line's reopening. Source: 1 NEWS


Iwi's 'pain and anguish' at plan to rename Great Barrier Island

An iwi which has occupied Great Barrier Island since the 1700s is outraged another group of iwi will officially rename the island.

The island, which lies off Hauraki Gulf and about 100km north-east of Auckland, will be renamed Aotea - Great Barrier Island by a group of Hauraki iwi, based from North Auckland to Coromandel.

It is one of 52 geographic sites across the North Island being renamed as part of the Pare Hauraki treaty settlement.

It's a small change on paper, but to the people of Ngātiwai ki Aotea, it means much more.

Ngātiwai Iwi trustee Aperahama Edwards said Hauraki had no right to make decisions over the island.

"It's almost impossible to describe the pain, the anguish [and] the grief that we are already feeling.

"Rights and interests have been afforded to Hauraki tribes by way of redress and one of them is the right to re-name Great Barrier Island. We believe that's our privilege, that's our right."

The name-change dispute adds to a long list of overlapping claims among iwi.

They occur when two or more iwi have ties to the same area of land, but the Crown recognises one group's rights to the land over another through settlement redress.

Mr Edwards said Ngātiwai had occupied Great Barrier Island for centuries.

"We have two marae there, we have whānau who remain there and keep the fires burning, our fires have never been extinguished.

"We're the only people that live there, everything. From a tikanga-based perspective it's our whānau that place rāhui and all of those sorts of things."

Ngātiwai are not the first iwi to oppose the Hauraki treaty settlement, which was signed last month.

In opposition to the settlement, 16 claims have been filed to the Waitangi Tribunal.

Pare Hauraki lead negotiator Paul Majurey has fiercely defended the iwi's historic connections and rights to different areas in the North Island.

And he continues to defend their rights on Great Barrier Island too.

He wouldn't be interviewed, but sent through a statement made by the Māori Land Court in 1998 that shows the iwi of Hauraki do have historic connections to the island - and have established wāhi tapu or sacred places there.

Ngātiwai kaumātua Opo Ngawaka lives on the island.

He said he was completely blindsided by the redress included in the Hauraki settlement.

"It's about our rights to make decisions on what goes forward here, and not something that sits behind closed doors.

"All of a sudden we get this picture of what they intend to do, and that's the difficult part of it."

Mr Ngawaka said Ngātiwai had made numerous attempts to meet with the people of Hauraki.

"There hasn't been any discussion back on our marae with them and if there is going to be a name-change come and talk to us on our whenua and on our marae and discuss this out.

"We would never do that to anyone else, it's not in our nature."

He said a tikanga-based process, where iwi resolved issues among themselves without the Crown involved, had been forgotten.

By Te Aniwa Hurihanganui

rnz.co.nz

Sam Wallace takes a look at one of the best views Great Barrier Island has to offer.
Source: Breakfast