The Hawea Community Association was so frustrated by rubbish and human waste left behind by visitors members blocked vehicle access to some areas.
Who can blame them?
As freedom campers increase in numbers so do problems with too few loos.
Waitaki MP Jacqui Dean met the association and was impressed that they had come up with possible solutions:
Mrs Dean said suggestions from the meeting included more signage, maps of the North and South Islands, showing public toilets, dump stations and the different types of camping areas, a requirement to have porta potties in all camper vans without holding tanks and the progressive development of freedom camping areas with toilets provided.
The larger camper cans and caravans usually have their own loos. But smaller ones don’t and are often hired by people travelling on the cheap who don’t want to pay camping fees.
The provision of more public loos would help so that people have somewhere to go where they’re likely to stay but that comes at a cost.
Companies renting vehicles to tourists have a responsibility to educate them about the long distance between loos and give a very strong message that they can’t stay in places if there’s nowhere to go.