Flintshire Schools Health Warning!

JB writes to schools -Governors need to be informed of risks.-Immediate action demanded from Flintshire County Council. 

This letter will soon be arriving at a Flintshire school near YOU!-------->

If you are a parent (or grandparent) with kids in any Flintshire school, you can help by writing NOW to the head-teacher -or speak with any school governor. Tell them of your concerns and that YOU want SOMEBODY who is clinically competent to produce a documented assessment of the possible Health risks to CHILDREN that might result from the current proposals!

Below, are some recent aerial pictures of local schools showing just how close they appear to be to the proposed new road-widening.

I believe that the new road proposals put several FCC schools well within the 500 metres pollution proximity "danger-zone" suggested by the latest research.

To confirm the location status of the schools, I have privately commissioned a LAND SURVEY and will publish the full results soon.

The work is in progress -and the camera is rolling...to see a short preview clip..
click here!

Dear Head Of School & All School Governors

In April of last year I became aware of plans to widen the dual-carriageway that runs behind the Ewloe Green Primary to virtual UK “motorway” standards. Transport Wales is actively promoting this scheme as an “improvement” –even though it will encourage the number of cars and diesel trucks using the route to double! If such a thing is permitted to happen, I believe that any children exposed to the increased pollution will suffer serious health problems –and I refuse to accept, that just because people in high places might be ignorant, incompetent or complacent, the health of my grandchildren has to be put at risk.

I have no medical qualifications –but I trust those who do. So, when in February of this year, I heard that the respected, medical journal, “The Lancet” had published a report of the findings of  a health study on 3600 children who had been exposed to  airborne pollution from nearby motorways I was interested. The conclusions of the “Gauderman” report was that there is now solid evidence that children who regularly spend time within 500 metres of high-density highways inevitably suffer irreversible lung damage and reduced life expectancy.

With a huge swathe of disruption and super-highway planned so close to your school, –this scares me. Especially as up to the present time, I can find no evidence that Transport Wales –or any department of Flintshire County Council has done a proper Health Impact Assessment (“HIA”) on the proposed new road-widening. HIA is a procedure is promoted by the Medial Office for Wales to specifically evaluate, document and process consultation with Medical Practitioners, Clinicians and Physicians and to ensure the input of all those trained to deal with the health and well-being of people -as distinct from those competences is in more general environmental matters. If this is indeed the case then this is a dangerous and irresponsible omission and it does not constitute the obligation of, “due care” -which I expect of my Local Authority.

I’m not a politician and I have no party-specific affiliation or agenda other than this single issue; but I want to do what’s best for my grandchildren’s health. So, after listening to a lot of excuses, on 13 March 2007, I put my concerns directly to Chris Kay, the Chief Executive Officer at Flintshire County Council. He is now aware that I shall be sending a letter like this to the County Chief of Education and the Chair of Governors of every school in Flintshire. Then if anyone pleads that they, “thought that was someone else’s department” or “I didn’t know” then they know now!

For starters, I’m insisting that, without delay, Flintshire County Council must conduct its own, proper Health Impact Assessment on all schools in Flintshire that are within 500 metres of any proposed road-widening. Only that will give parents and staff a clear, unbiased, professionally evaluated understanding of exactly what health risks our kids are likely to be subjected. And I want them to start with YOUR School.

Also, I want FCC to immediately install an air-quality monitoring box –not just at the roadside where they place such things now but one located right INSIDE the boundary of your school. That way we'll know each hour just how much traffic pollutant the road outside is loading into our kid’s lungs.
I am privately pursuing the connection of airborne traffic pollution and children’s health for possible inclusion at a Public Enquiry to be held later this year. If, by that time, Flintshire County Council have done nothing more to effect a Health Impact Assessment and a public stand against Transport Wales’ proposals, I shall seek support from concerned parents throughout the County for a future class-action on grounds of negligence. 

I will do this in the interests of my own grandchildren and I will quote your school as  a test case.

Please discuss this at the earliest opportunity at your next meeting of governors. Let me know what action you are proposing. I can assist with contact information and background data. I am prepared to address a meeting should this be thought helpful.

But first, I’m asking for you, on behalf of ALL the children at your school, that you share my concerns. Making your own immediate representations to parents and Flintshire County Council would be a good start.

Please be prepared to do all you can for the children in the school. In years to come they will remember that you did your bit to keep them safe."

Yours faithfully
John Butler 15 March 2007