OPINION

Care would have averted poisoning tragedy in Gouvia

As your newspaper recently pointed out, apart from the incalculable loss suffered by the British parents of the children that died in the Gouvia resort, for it is wise to remember that is first and foremost a personal tragedy, the reputation of Greece has once again been sullied.  This unfortunately is a self-inflicted wound for there is no way that it is possible to depict what has happened in light of the fact that this was not an isolated event. To paraphrase Oscar Wilde, for such an event to happen once is misfortune, but to have it happen again is surely careless. It also illustrates perfectly well once again the unhealthy and dangerous national habit of disregarding laws, including those rules and regulations that are meant to promote public safety. Such disregard borders on contempt when we consider that in not a few cases the motive for doing so is financial.  There must be accountability and there must be punishment not only to reassure those foreigners who after this event may reasonably have doubts about visiting Greece, but also to bring home to the citizens of this country that there is always a cost. It is hubris to imagine that no price will be paid by our ignoring those laws that have been in place to protect us, whether this involves reckless driving or ensuring that gas boilers do not leak. It is high time that the state fulfills its obligations and does something to bring about an end to this culture of contemptible carelessness that for far too long has been allowed to run rampant, putting all our lives at risk. CONSTANTINE NEZIS, Athens. I was sad to read about the carbon monoxide poisoning on the Island of Corfu. What should have been installed, as is mandatory in all public buildings including hotels in the USA, is carbon monoxide detectors. I have several installed in my own home. They are very inexpensive, between 20 and 40 euros each. Most are battery operated or connected to the security system and it is suggested they be checked twice a year and the battery replaced at the same time. TASSO LAMBOS, Canton, Ohio, USA.