Spray victims speak out

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Speak up if Queenstown Lakes District Council’s recent aerial spraying of weedkiller on Queenstown Hill laid
you low.

That’s the plea from chemical-poisoning victim Mel Patten: “I want to know how many other [Queenstown Hill residents] had those symptoms.”

Those symptoms were “really bad headaches, stinging swollen eyes, a sore throat and lots of trouble breathing”, Patten says.

They started on January 19, the day a chopper sprayed Roundup on wilding conifers on 30 hectares of Queenstown Hill, and still plague Patten weeks later.

She confesses to low immunity after being chemically poisoned nine years ago but friends staying at her house also suffered – with a rash, blisters, fatigue and flu-like symptoms.

Patten had to take two days off work and stayed away from home for six nights – but that hasn’t done the trick.