Ngunguru School gala day and fireworks display canned because of health and safety concerns

By Mike Dinsdale -
4 comments
Despite this year's cancellation, the school says the event will be back next year. Photo / 123rf
Despite this year's cancellation, the school says the event will be back next year. Photo / 123rf

Concerns over the impacts of new health and safety legislation have seen the cancellation of the popular Ngunguru School gala day and fireworks display.

The event, which was to be held tomorrow, has been pulled because the organising committee did not have time to clarify where the event sat with new legislation introduced in April, school principal Rick Sayer said.

"We have a PTA that organises the event and we have decided to cancel it this year, given the new health and safety legislation," Mr Sayer said.

"We thought that until we are happy that we have looked at every aspect and how it impacts on the school we'd hold off this year, but we will be back bigger and better in the future."

Under the Health and Safety at Work Act places holding events must go through a risk management process to identify hazards that could give rise to reasonably foreseeable risks to health and safety.

They must also carry out supervision, training, and instruction of workers.

Ngunguru Primary School principal Rick Sayer.
Ngunguru Primary School principal Rick Sayer.

In the case of a school, it could be held liable if an accident occurred during an event.

Mr Sayer said: "We want to make sure everything is done properly and meets the requirements of the legislation. The school and Board of Trustees become liable if anything goes wrong so we need to make sure we have no issues that may arise.

"We haven't really had the time to do due diligence on how it will work in with the new health and safety legislation."

He said with the fireworks display the gala was a bit different from a normal school event so that added a bigger risk.

"Because it's new legislation we haven't really had the time to explore how our gala day and fireworks display will meet the new legislation," Mr Sayer said.

"We have always managed them very well, but all it takes is one issue that we hadn't identified ... and we really just need to work through our process."

Mr Sayer promised the event would be back next year.

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