Ombudsman highlights “serious dangers” in children’s parks


The Ombudsman of the Comunitat Valenciana, Jose Cholbi, has criticised the Ayuntamiento of Orihuela on the deplorable state of the many green areas and children’s playgrounds on the coast, pointing out the “serious and completely unacceptable state of the parks for which remedial measures should be adopted as a matter of urgency”.

The Catalan Ombudsman learned about the matter from the media, including The Leader Newspaper, in which a report was published on 1st May, which included “details on both the lack of maintenance and the poor health and safety conditions of them all”, said Cholbi.

In response to the reports, he asked the City Council for information “to verify the legitimacy of the situation and its consequent dangers”.

The municipal report accepted that the situation was as described: “The consistory recognised the lack of action and confirmed that it was due to a lack of budget, whilst at the same time heaping much of the blame on the builders and promoters, who they said in many cases had yet to complete the necessary procedure in handing the plots over to the council, following the completion of their developments.”

The report sent by the City Council advised the Ombudsman that the necessary budget to complete these actions is estimated at 300,000 euros “But the date of the repair work is still to be agreed,” Cholbi said.

The Ombudsman highlighted “the seriousness and the inherent dangers of the situation which makes it absolutely essential to quickly allocate the necessary budget. He was also extremely critical of the time that it is taking many of the builders to hand the plots over to the council following completion of building works, whilst at the same time reminding everybody concerned of their liabilities with regard to accidents.

The original information was put together by members of FAOC (Federación de Asociaciones de Orihuela Costa-Alicante) who said at the time that they were becoming increasingly concerned about the deteriorating, and even dangerous state of many children’s playgrounds on the Orihuela Costa.

Their concerns were supported by photographs taken by the member associations in Villamartin, La Florida and La Regia, which they said demonstrated just a small sample of the problems that affect equipment in playgrounds all over the coast.