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No exemption for the private school rowers – and still they went on – NO WAIT – NCA cocks it up again!

By johnboy - 20 February 2009 129

[First filed: February 19, 2009 @ 08:51]

Earlier in the week we had widespread complaints about the independent schools rowing regatta and its appalling organisation which created widespread conflict between the well heeled rowers parents and every other user of the lake shore.

A lot of you found this curious at the time as the lake was supposed to be closed to public use due to health concerns around blue green algae.

There was some mumbling about exemptions, which is curious as a permit rarely mitigates health risks.

On 666 this morning the NCA Chief Executive, Gary Rake, has put the lie to this, he even went so far as to go down to the lake on Sunday morning to beg them to not put the kids in the water.

Independent schools and rowing officials are bunkering down and refusing to comment.

UPDATE: The ABC news report on this is now online:

    “We’ve never in the history of events of water events on Lake Burley Griffin had an event organiser that’s refused, and ignored safety advice.”

If you’re a participant who got sick (or one of their parents) we’d love to hear from you.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Well I’ve heard now of at least one girl reportedly developing a nasty rash on the arm since the weekend.

IMPORTANT UPDATE: The Canberra Times now brings word that the schools did in fact have permission from the NCA to go ahead, permission the CEO Gary Rake was apparently ignorant of when he went down to the lakeside to wave his arms and then splash himself across the media.

    The NCA verified yesterday that an email had been sent by a junior staff member to the Canberra Grammar School, which had been nominated as the convener of this year’s regatta, reiterating that it had issued primary- and secondary-level warnings in relation to algae in the lake and advising against any swimming or boating activities. But the email also said that the regatta could proceed based on the precautions that would be in place, including providing fresh water to douse any students who became immersed, and having medical staff on hand. This was forwarded to the rowing association, and referred to in advice given to other schools.

So on that basis I’d like to apologise to the rowers and schools involved.

What’s Your opinion?


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129 Responses to
No exemption for the private school rowers – and still they went on – NO WAIT – NCA cocks it up again!
Jim Jones 9:44 am 19 Feb 09

So we’re all in furious agreement then?

jakez 9:44 am 19 Feb 09

The complaining mother wanted the ACT Government to support rowing. Quite frankly I do not want them to support rowing. I don’t want them to support any sport (even my beloved ACTAFL). If anyone in the Government even knows that rowing exists, then the Government has too many resources.

She could have just meant traffic control though…but that’s harder to make a rant out of.

NoAddedMSG 9:43 am 19 Feb 09

crabb said :

Those wearing tutus get right of way?

Yup, it comes from the 1957 Ballet wars in New York City where two rival ballet gangs were competing for the use of the town hall. It is a little more complicated than just the person who wears the tutu gets the right of way though, for example if you are wearing a badly home-made tutu with a droopy, uneven hem then everyone, tutu or not, trumps you.

Jim Jones 9:42 am 19 Feb 09

“First in best dressed” is hardly a compelling argument that explains why certain people think they can take over a ‘shared’ area – including heavily used bike paths – and treat it as if it exists for their benefit alone.

Sure, they have a right to use the facilities as much as everyone else, but they don’t have a right to exclude others from using the facilities.

One would have thought that parents would see an inherently value in demonstrating the value of sharing to their offspring. It sounds to me as if they were more interested in demonstrating the ineffable joy of acting like a pack of self-entitled jerkwads.

ebony57 9:40 am 19 Feb 09

Aah, but apparently they think that by virtue of their Regatta, all otherwise public facilities in the area magically became “theirs”, and that they could do with them as they wished.

Happy for them and theirs to enjoy their regular activities, but unable to find any reasoning for why they should be so hostile towards anyone else who might like to also make use of the same facilities.

I mean, fancy wanting to use a cycle path for cycling. Or the roads for driving. What is the world coming to?

crabb 9:38 am 19 Feb 09

Those wearing tutus get right of way?

G-Fresh 9:37 am 19 Feb 09

Snotty nosed people that won’t share spaces are easily scared off with a bit of tom-foolery and rambunctious misbehavior. 🙂

I doubt they’d have voiced their discontent as to others using the space. This is probably an over estimation of the goings on…

G-Fresh 9:35 am 19 Feb 09

Lol what’s a ballet system I ask you? For I do not know.

johnboy 9:34 am 19 Feb 09

Sure, maybe if they acted as if they were sharing with the same rights no-one would have complained.

What I’m hearing is “how dare you horrid people share our space”

If they couldn’t get the roads and bike paths closed then should not have carried on as if they had.

Ditto the entry to a closed lake.

G-Fresh 9:32 am 19 Feb 09

First in best dressed. Do you propose that their should be a ballet system for the picnic areas, roads and bike paths?

They have just as much right to use the facilities as anyone else

johnboy 9:28 am 19 Feb 09

The picnic areas, roads, and bike paths weren’t closed, but that didn’t stop the rowers and their mummies carrying on as if they had been by all accounts, and the admissions of the mummies on air this morning.

G-Fresh 9:26 am 19 Feb 09

Why would there have been other users on the lakes shore? Firstly given that there were restrictions on the lakes use and secondly that the place being discussed is often throughout the year used for regattas?

Are the complainants feeling a little left out that they weren’t at the regatta, and haven’t been involved in rowing before? It’s not a sport only for ‘well heeled’ participants in fact it is quite cheap to join the Canberra Rowing Club for instance and be involved.

The complaining about this only shows how much people on this forum are a bunch of insolent cry babies that could much better spend there time.

Go for a row!

jakez 9:25 am 19 Feb 09

That parent sounded like someone who would post on RiotACT.

The NCA covered their butts so it sounds like if something went wrong it would fall on ACT Rowing for liability. This is as it should be.

A second parent that called in seemed to make it clear that ACT Rowing weren’t exactly being forthright regarding the dangers (and the attempts by NCA to have it cancelled). If I were a parent I’d be rather cranky.

poptop 9:25 am 19 Feb 09

So there was no permit and there are no consequences?

MattB 9:09 am 19 Feb 09

I heard that interview. Very interesting.

The organisers were using a shower to mitigate the effects of the algae, although a shower doesn’t do much for the algae ingested accidently when you fall in.

A parent called in too, instead of discussing the real issue she went on about cyclists getting in the way.

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