The Saskatchewan Roughriders might have won the July 29 home game, but that’s not what many fans remember.
Many remember how hot it was – 35 C at kickoff – and the scarcity of water fountains. The city, the team and Evraz Place addressed the issue, saying little except they’re reviewing the game day experience.
“This was an extraordinary circumstance,” explained Mayor Michael Fougere to the CJME Morning Show. “It was very hot and we don’t usually get those hot days. And we’re going to adjust. We may bring water stations in later on, we’ll see what we do here.”
“Part of this, in a new stadium, is to adapt to what happens around you so we understand the concerns,” he said, before pointing out there were no water fountains at Taylor Field.
He also said it was important for people to come to the stadium prepared – whether it be for a 30 C day or a -30 C day.
“Everyone knew it was going to be an incredibly hot day … so I think you take precautions and you take care of yourself as you go to the new stadium,” Fougere said.
But that answer isn’t good enough for Regina lawyer Gerald Heinrichs. He said he was “troubled” by all the people – upwards of 20 – who were injured during the July 29 game.
“What bothered me perhaps even a little more was just a lack of what I thought was a satisfactory response,” he explained. “I didn’t hear any apology from stadium officials or the city and more importantly, I didn’t hear any strong words of commitment that they were going to ensure that injuries like this weren’t going to happen again.”
Heinrichs said two people were taken to hospital from the stadium, while another 20 or so required first aid. That’s what prompted him to send a letter to the province’s senior medical health officer and chief medical health officer, asking them to assess the risks.
“I’m wanting them to, number one, assess – is this a problem?” he said. “I believe it is, but let’s have the professionals look at it and, number two, let’s have this problem remedied.”
In the meantime, Heinrichs said he wants to see a remedy from the city and stadium officials – pointing to photos of long lineups at the stadium’s just four water fountains.
“It’s like a refugee camp, I mean, we have a so-called state of the art stadium and we have people lined up for water,” he said. “How on earth is that happening in Canada?”
The mayor, speaking to the CJME Morning Show, said they are looking into how to make the stadium for comfortable for eventgoers.