Thu, Nov 30, 2017 - Page 3 News List

Park officials slap elite school with NT$51,000 fine

MISSED SIGNALS:The students from Ivy High School in Taichung were led by foreign teachers, who said they could not read the restricted signs

By Jason Pan  /  Staff reporter

Pingtung County authorities said they plan to fine students and teachers from an elite private school who illegally entered a protected preserve in Kenting National Park (墾丁國家公園) over the weekend and had to be rescued.

Kenting National Park Administration officials yesterday said they are to impose a NT$51,000 fine — NT$3,000 for each of the 17 people from Ivy High School in Taichung — for intruding into the Nanren Mountain ecological protected area (南仁山生態保護區).

The fine is for violating Article 19 of the National Park Act (國家公園法), which stipulates that a permit is required before entering ecological protection areas in national parks.

According to Liberty Times (sister newspaper of the Taipei Times) and other media reports, the group of 14 students were led by three teachers from the high school as they walked along a coastal hiking trail inside the preserve for about eight hours on Saturday last week.

Their unauthorized entry into the protected area was discovered after the group called for help.

Group members were overcome by exhaustion and called local authorities for help, one report said, adding that it took police, firefighters and volunteers more than two hours to transport the group outside of the park.

The ecological preserve is in the county’s Manzhou Township (滿洲) in the northeast of Kenting National Park, and is managed by the park’s administration office.

Officials said the leaders of the group were foreign national teachers and they told police that they did not notice the signs warning against entry into the area without first obtaining permits.

Ivy High School is an elite private school with high tuition fees and offers bilingual classes.

A school administrator said the students were on a beach-cleaning outing as part of a leadership training camp.

He said they were hiking along the shoreline and entered the reserve by mistake, adding that the foreign teachers were not able to understand the Chinese signs, which led to some misunderstanding.

Park officials said the preserve has a daily limit of 400 visitors, who must hire park guides when applying for permits. This costs NT$2,200 and each group is limited to no more than 15 people.

This story has been viewed 2411 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top