A Regina lawyer is urging health officials to weigh in on the safety of Mosaic Stadium due to the number of water fountains at the facility.
Gerald Heinrichs from Merchant Law Group has written to senior medical officer Dr. George Carson and chief medical health officer Dr. Saqib Shahab, asking them to investigate whether the public is safe at the stadium.
During an afternoon game between the Saskatchewan Roughriders and the Toronto Argonauts on July 29, the temperature in Regina reached 32 C at 5 p.m. CST, just a half hour after the game’s scheduled 4:30 p.m. kickoff.
Fans were outraged due to massive lineups at the four existing water fountains in the new stadium. With the stadium reaching its capacity of 33,000, that meant one fountain for every 8,250 people.
“A common measure for stadiums like this is one fountain per thousand. That adds up to about 30 fountains for Mosaic Stadium and we have four,” Heinrichs told CBC. “The question arises, is this event place safe for the public?”
According to the lawyer, 21 people were treated at the game for “heat-related symptoms” and another two were taken to hospital. He said there are flaws and errors in both the building and its management.
On Aug. 1, Evraz Place, the Saskatchewan Roughrider Football Club and the City of Regina released a joint statement, saying that people can bring any number of sealed one litre water bottles and empty, refillable bottles.
“Water and other beverages are also readily available for purchase from vendors across the stadium,” reads Tuesday’s statement.
The City of Regina pointed out that the old Mosaic Stadium had no water fountains.
Heinrich calls their response “shameful.”
“I didn’t see a lot of message or good faith from the stadium officials that they had much intention at all of remedying this problem.” Heinrich said. “I am fearful that the stadium operators are willfully restricting public water access, thereby forcing people into physical distress to sell water for profit.”
Heinrichs likens the number of water fountains to the number of emergency exits, saying there should be a minimum standard.
“Mosaic Stadium was supposed to be something of pride for our city. What happened last weekend—there’s not much pride in that.”
The City of Regina was contacted by CBC and a spokesperson indicated that the city…