Category: communities


Systemic failure in New Zealand emergency response is confirmed by repeat avoidable tragedies in Christchurch, unmitigated disasters under National-led government. Full responsibility lies with them and with everyone who has been selfishly and ignorantly voting support for corrupt sheer incompetence in central and local government: a regional despoliation shared between greedy empire-builders of Beehive and town hall.

With an eye – they happily admitted at the time – only for increased irrigation water for dairy profits from Canterbury, John Key, Gerry Brownlee and Bill English – backed by Christchurch and Canterbury mayors – have completely dropped the ball in every aspect of good governance in the region, since they destroyed its democratically elected council in April 2010.

Since then, because of this, many people have been unnecessarily dying due to the fragmentation of effective civil defence that the central and district governments have collectively caused. That is abysmal and completely unacceptable performance. Heads must roll. Starting today. For public safety.

The lazy, corrupt, ignorant incompetence that characterises New Zealand government has to stop: it is deadly at fault. The same confused fire-cordon-and-response failings that cost lives in the levelled Canterbury Television building on 22-23 February 2011 re-appeared on 14 February 2017 in the Port Hills fires.[1] The failing is in leadership and co-ordination, not that of hands-on responders: a communication and collaboration failure in the back office, from the top down. It is a man-made sabotage of effective regional response that John Key et. al. never imagined was going to be needed or could bite them so very, very hard. Now it very much has. The pattern of functional decay is thoroughly exposed.

News media could stop deflecting attention away from National’s gross mis-leadership and culpable manslaughters in Canterbury. Or remain accessories. Stop promoting self-advancing, opportunist and incompetent mayors.

Ask how the CTV building fire cordon was managed in February 2011. Was it effective in Police hands, as prescribed by an emergency site that had fatality? Or were fire crews excessively stretched without backup, then investigated as blameworthy? Were the fire responders made scapegoats, then and in February 2017?

Ask especially what action council took to check building safety and to cordon off hazards after 4 September 2010. None was apparent as a loud sigh of relief led into an ill-fated Boxing Day Sale, to satisfy city retailers, instead. Criminal negligence and liability rests here and instead we see knighthood reported? Not good enough by far.

Without remedial action at the governance level, New Zealand’s coming grand disaster – the Alpine Fault movement and its follow-ons – will only be all the more lethally tragic. Proposals to centralise emergency response are to save who time instead of getting on an aeroplane? And what happens then when Wellington gets badly hit? No confidence, at all, as it is unearned yet.

Tweet summary: #Canterbury regional bungle #ECan #CDEM
National Party implicated in #CTV + #Sugarloaf avoidable deaths With districts

Action summary: What public safety requires most, without delay, is –
all communities developing skills and means to organise, represent and keep themselves safe,
National out of central government,
Labour out of local government
– monopolies are never, ever healthy or helpful.

Event overview: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2017_Port_Hills_fires

Timeline:

Monday 13 February 2017
c4:30pm Fire broke out in Lansdowne Valley, Selwyn District, spreading rapidly.
c7pm Fire broke out on Marley’s Hill to the north, in the Christchurch City Council area.

Marleys-Lansdowne fires c9pm 130217

Marley’s Hill fire as seen from the south, above the spreading Lansdowne fire, c9pm 13 Feb 2017, in warm west wind

Scrub fire breaks out in Christchurch
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/scrub-fire-breaks-out-in-christchurch.html

Two fires on Christchurch’s Port Hills stretch fire crews, destroys house, force evacuations
“Fire Service spokeswoman Lyn Crosson.. said an area of 400 by 400 square metres was burning at Summit Rd near Marley’s Hill. At 10pm, Crosson said the fire was still burning uncontained and residents on Summit and Worsleys roads were being evacuated. ‘Crews are currently working to prevent it jumping Summit Rd,’ she said. ‘Summit Rd will remain closed for the night.'”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/89372687/large-christchurch-scrub-fire-out-of-control-second-fire-now-burning

Tuesday 14 February 2017
Not enough was done from dawn, by far, while confused officials argued jurisdiction.
Evacuation set #1 of 3 was ignored – emergency not declared, despite it already spanning two populated districts in very dry weather.

Marley's Hill 14 Feb 2017

Marley’s Hill on 14 Feb 2017, view from the north, Lansdowne smoke to the south, warm west wind continues

SDC-1. Tai Tapu/Port Hills fires – update 10.30am “Two fires are continuing to burn this morning in the Tai Tapu/Port Hills area – one in the vicinity of Early Valley Road/Lansdowne, and the other in the Marley Hill area near the Summit Road. The fires cover an area of around 700 hectares. Fire status The Early Valley Road fire started yesterday evening at around 6pm. It has since crossed Summit Road around the Kennedy’s Bush area and at some other points. It is principally being fought by air with support from ground crews. Today crews will focus on protecting structures and controlling the fire, and protecting Kennedy’s Bush. The Marley Hill fire started in a car park around 7pm last night and spread west along the Summit Road area overnight. Protection of structures and the Christchurch Adventure Park and are also a focus for fire fighting. Both fires are now being managed by one Emergency Operations Centre based at Selwyn District Council’s Rolleston Headquarters as well as on site control points… Around 24 properties were evacuated last night with evacuations remaining in place currently. Tai Tapu School was opened last night to receive evacuees but closed last night with all evacuees staying with friends and family except for one family who accommodation was arranged for. No further evacuations are anticipated to be needed currently. One house has been confirmed destroyed by the fire, with a structure destroyed and one other house slightly damaged. All affected structures are in the Lansdowne area” http://www.selwyn.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0007/216187/Port-Hills-fire-update-10.pdf

Port Hills fires: Photos from inside the cordon – Selwyn Rural Fire response
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/port-hills-fire-photos-from-inside-the-cordon/

Below Marley Hill, by mid-afternoon 15.02.17, smokes billows phenomenally

Below Marley Hill, by mid-afternoon 15.02.17, smokes billows phenomenally with new flames, wind had just turned dry-easterly

Two fires rage on the Port Hills as one enters the Christchurch Adventure Park “fire retardant had been air-dropped on the top station earlier in the day. Selwyn District Council principal rural fire officer Douglas Marshall said the fire was ‘crawling through the under-matter at the bottom of the trees’ at the top of the park, and that fire crews weren’t too concerned about it causing a problem at this stage. A nearby crew is monitoring the situation. Firefighters earlier said two huge blazes in Christchurch’s Port Hills were now contained, although the battle to put them out was continuing. … The Selwyn District Council said the Marley Hill fire appeared to be largely contained on the city side of Summit Rd by 3pm. … Operations have slowed down for the night. Marshall said there was one crew monitoring the Marley Hill fire and three watching the one at Early Valley overnight. He was expecting it to be a quiet night as there was not much wind. … Twenty-four homes had to be evacuated overnight, and a group of children were among those rescued on Monday after becoming stuck near one of the fires. Selwyn principal rural fire officer Douglas Marshall said 11 helicopters and nearly 120 firefighters were working to contain the fires on Tuesday, and could be needed for another two or three days. Three two-member firefighting crews from the New Zealand Army had also been dispatched to help. ‘The second fire … [at Marleys Hill] is working around the radio mast that’s up in that area. It’s currently working down a ridge it’s probably the top end of the [Christchurch] Adventure Park area,’ Marshall said. ‘It’s not contained. It’s still burning quite strong. … A Fire Service spokesman said the Summit Rd fire had spread across 1.5 kilometres. The flames were too aggressive to battle in the dark, so firefighters working overnight concentrated on trying to stop it spreading further” http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89376043/Two-fires-rage-on-the-Port-Hills-as-one-enters-the-Christchurch-Adventure-Park

2.30pm Sugarloaf helicopter crash and pilot death. Flying halted temporarily, stakes raised greatly.

Helicopter pilot dies while fighting Christchurch wild fires “Douglas Marshall, principal rural fire authority officer at the Selwyn District Council, said the accident was a tragedy. ‘Firefighting is difficult and dangerous work … our thoughts are with the deceased [person’s] family at this time.’ He said it was possible a number of pilots involved in helping to douse flames would want to stand down following the accident, and authorities were respecting that decision. In a statement, Selwyn District Emergency Management said the Marley Hill fire remains contained, although ground crews are monitoring activity along the Summit Rd. The other fire at Early Valley is also contained, but there are some spots of fire burning downhill from the ridgeline above Governors Bay and Allandale. Helicopters will continue to operate until nightfall tonight and from first light tomorrow. The area of both fires combined as estimated at about 580ha.”
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11800525

SDC-2. Tai Tapu/Port Hills fires – update 3pm “The Marley Hill fire appears to be largely contained on the city side of the Summit Road. Parts of the Early Valley Road fire have crossed the Summit Road towards Governors Bay. Current activity across both fires is focused on efforts to protect structures and prevent the fire from spreading.” http://www.selwyn.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0008/216188/Port-Hills-fire-update-3pm-14-Feb.pdf
SDC-3. Tai Tapu/Port Hills fires – update 6.30pm “The current situation with the fires are that the Marley Hill Fire remains contained, although ground crews are monitoring activity along the Summit Road. Significant effort put into the Early Valley fire today has resulted in it being effectively contained, although there are some spots of fire burning downhill from the ridgeline above Governors Bay and Allandale. The New Zealand Fire Service is undertaking active structure protection in this area. Helicopters will continue to operate until nightfall tonight and from first light tomorrow. No further structures have been lost beyond those reported earlier.” http://www.selwyn.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0009/216189/PORT-HILLS-FIRES-6pm-update-14-Feb.pdf

Wednesday 15 February 2017
Governors Bay evacuations overnight by Civil Defence; that fire contained, residents returned.
Evacuation #2 of 3 was ignored – emergency not declared.
Smoke then fire broke out in a big way in the Cashmere Valley and Port Hills south-west of Christchurch city.
Chaos had been unleashed which led to panic, mass evacuations, misinformation and terrible overnight fear.
Evacuation #3, widespread in panic and south-west Port Hills areas affected, was acted upon:
6pm A local emergency was declared jointly by the Selwyn and Christchurch mayors.

Port Hills Fires, Christchurch, Feb 15th 2017 – YouTube time-lapses, Dru Norriss

Port Hills fires: Live updates – extract
“1:00am Marley’s Hill fire escalates, as fire spreads downhill through the forest.. within 150m of Sign of the Kiwi
3:00am 700 Governors Bay and Allandale residents evacuated. Governors Bay School which is closed today
5:00am Fire seen close to the chair lift at the Christchurch Adventure Park
7:00am City council activates the Emergency Operations Centre to coordinate the welfare operation
8:00am Helicopters are filling up monsoon buckets in the Heathcote River, corner of Hoon Hay Valley Rd and Cashmere Rd
9:00am –We’ve broken its back’: Governors Bay chief fire officer Andrew Norris
9.09am Health warning over smoke
9.27am Helicopters are using water from ponds and dams on farms in the Lansdowne area to fill monsoon buckets to fight the Early Valley Rd fire. Two helicopters can be seen in the air above the fire and two others are refueling.
10.34am Conditions are fine and dry as firefighters continue to tackle fires on the Port Hills. MetService forecaster Cameron Coutts said winds were gentle, at about 17km/h, at the moment and had been blowing south west for some time. A north east change with 37km/h winds should hit the hills from about mid-afternoon, before dying down tonight
12:30pm Technicians are waiting to get access to transmitters that operate the city’s emergency services dispatch, including ambulance and police. Power was lost on Monday at the Marley Hill location and it is operating on batteries
1:56pm Power outages across the city
2:30pm: More fire service resources are being sent to the Christchurch Adventure Park, to assess if structures can be saved
3:00pm Victoria Park is being closed as thick smoke billows from the Christchurch Adventure Park
3:10pm Fire units are on their way to Worsleys Rd, Kennedy’s Bush, after reports houses are being threatened
3:15pm Fire crews are currently working to control a flare up in Worsleys Spur area in the vicinity of the Christchurch Adventure Park.
3:25pm Police are evacuating residents from homes on Worsleys Rd near Summit Rd. Three houses are under threat from the fire. A Cashmere resident described it as an ‘inferno’
3:31pm Helicopter resources are stretched and one is not available at the moment to drop water on the Christchurch Adventure Park
3:59pm Police have cordoned off Westmorland at Cashmere Rd and are urging people to prepare for an evacuation.
5:10pm Reports of residents being evacuated from the Cracroft area.
5:18pm Police have confirmed houses on Kennedys Bush Rd and its intersecting streets are being evacuated. Residents are heading to Pioneer Stadium
5:28pm Fire service has just issued a directive for all vehicles to get off Dyers Pass Rd
5:32pm Fire fighters say the blaze will ‘punch’ its way out of McVicars Plantation and hit the first corner of Dyers Pass Rd below the Sign of Kiwi before dark
6:00pm A command centre has been set up at the Sign of the Takahe
6:15pm The mayors of Christchurch and Selwyn have made a joint decision to declare states of emergency in the areas
6:22pm Fire fighters battling flames at the Christchurch Adventure Park only have about an hours worth of water left. Crews are scrambling to get more water to them
6:41pm There are unconfirmed reports that Pentre Tce, by the Sign of the Takahe, is being evacuated
6:50pm Cashmere Rd is now closed from Kaiwara St to Kennedys Bush Rd due to evacuations in Lower Cashmere, Cracroft, Westmorland and Kennedys Bush
9:39pm Fire fighters at the Sign of the Takahe cordon are telling residents above the landmark to leave their homes as the fire spreads, with reports it has moved into Victoria Park
9:44pm Canterbury Regional Controller Neville Reilly has been deployed to the Christchurch Civil Defence Emergency Operations Centre to head the overall response to the fires
9:55pm Authorities issue urgent evacuations: ‘Residents in the area from the Sign of the Takehe to Victoria Park should evacuate their homes immediately. Authorities are advising that the fire has crossed Dyers Pass Road into Victoria Park. Police and the Defence Force are evacuating properties in the area. We are also evacuating the south side of Cashmere Road to Kennedy’s Bush Road, and to Hoon Hay Valley Road'”
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/live-update-day/

SDC-4. Tai Tapu/Port Hills fires – update 10am “Overnight increased fire activity was reported around midnight in the area above Governors Bay. Multiple fire units were called in from around the region to assist in firefighting and protecting properties. At approximately 3am fire and police evacuated around 107 residents from the Allandale area near Governors Bay, due to the fire risk. The Christchurch City Council has activated an Emergency Operations Centre to coordinate the welfare operation which includes a welfare centre at the Governors Bay school.” http://www.selwyn.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0019/216190/Port-Hills-fires-update-10am-15-Feb.pdf
SDC-5. States of Emergency-declared in Christchurch and Selwyn “The Mayors of Christchurch City and Selwyn District have made a joint decision to declare States of Emergency in their respective areas in relation to the Port Hills fires. The declaration follows the evacuation this afternoon of 200-300 residents as the fire shifted closer to residential properties. It is no longer just a significant rural fire on the boundary of the city. It is now a city issue with suburbs being evacuated. Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel says a city response is also required to ensure the safety and welfare of residents… Selwyn District Mayor Sam Broughton says, ‘we acknowledge there has been a huge effort responding to the fire to date, however this declaration recognises the seriousness of the situation, and this will allow us to provide all the assistance necessary to respond to the unfolding situation. The district and the city must work together to manage the situation and address the different challenges the fire is creating in each area.'” http://www.selwyn.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0020/216191/States-of-Emergency-declared-CHCH-Selwyn-15-Feb.pdf
SDC-6. Port Hills/ Tai Tapu fire update: Residents should be prepared to evacuate – update 7.15pm “The Marley Hill fire has spread extensively down Worsley Spur, causing extensive vegetation burning in the Christchurch Adventure Park. The fire is approaching the residential area of Westmoreland.” http://www.selwyn.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/216192/Port-Hills-fire-update-7.15pm-Wed-15-Feb.pdf

Port Hills fires: Some south west suburbs evacuate
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/westmorland-evacuate-as-fire-spreads/

Port Hills fire: Homes destroyed, more residents evacuating
http://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/news/emergency/more-evacuations-as-fire-rages-in-christchurchs-port-hills/

Homes destroyed, families evacuated as Christchurch fires spread “More than 1000 residents have fled their homes and at least eight properties have burned to the ground as a huge wild fire rages on in Christchurch. Terrified residents ran clutching precious belongings or bundled children into cars as the black smoke ballooned from the flames tearing through tinder dry scrub land. Several fires have now merged into one which is threatening dense residential housing. The blaze is estimated to have scorched more than 1850ha of land and is still growing. A state of emergency was declared in Christchurch and Selwyn, the Defence Force was deployed and health authorities issued warnings to vulnerable residents as black smoke drifted across the city. Civil Defence revised down the number of homes destroyed on Worsley Spur tonight to at least three after earlier issuing a statement saying 40 homes had been lost. A spokeswoman said the error was the result of misinformation being given to a rural fire officer and was revised following a ‘correction from the police on earlier information’. The incorrect figure was widely reported earlier tonight by media and made it into some copies of the morning Herald. Little information was available on how the error occurred but hard questions will no doubt be asked of authorities in the morning” http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11801058

Live: Fires continue to rage through Christchurch’s Port Hills
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/christchurch-helicopter-s-stood-down-from-firefighting.html

State of Emergency declared “Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel and Selwyn District Mayor Sam Broughton made a joint decision to declare the State of Emergency. It follows the evacuation of 200-300 residents as the fire shifted closer to residential properties in the south-west. Minister of Defence Gerry Brownlee has announced New Zealand Defence Force personnel have been asked to assist with fighting the fires. Ms Dalziel said a city response was also required to ensure the safety and welfare of residents. ‘Christchurch needs a multi-agency response given the seriousness of the situation. We need to be able to draw on all the resources possible to give our residents confidence in the ongoing response.’ Mr Broughton said: ‘We acknowledge there has been a huge effort responding to the fire to date, however this declaration recognises the seriousness of the situation, and this will allow us to provide all the assistance necessary to respond to the unfolding situation. The district and the city must work together to manage the situation and address the different challenges the fire is creating in each area.'” http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/state-of-emergency-declared-city/

Editorial: Why did it take so long to declare state of emergency? “The terrifying change on Wednesday afternoon, which saw the situation deteriorate rapidly, shows there can be no room for complacency or confusion among those in charge of dealing with the emergency… Civil Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee expressed frustration that a state of emergency was not declared earlier by the Selwyn District Council, the lead agency in fighting the fires, or the Christchurch City Council, within the boundaries of which much of the burning land is situated. The emergency was eventually declared on Wednesday evening when flames threatened city suburbs, then destroyed more houses and forced mass evacuations. It was obvious to anyone that the situation was getting worse not better, when the amount of smoke rising from the hills expanded enormously. Questions will now need to be asked whether the Selwyn Rural Fire Authority acted decisively enough and quickly enough, deploying all available resources. For instance, it seems that tankers, equipment and personnel had been on standby at Burnham Military Camp, but could not move, by law, while the army waited for a request from the civil authorities that was slow in coming. Criticism of emergency services at the height of a crisis is easy to make and often ill-advised. However, it is clear that there are lessons to be learned from this emergency, and the various authorities will need to take an honest and hard look at themselves when it is over… people deserve the best possible leadership, and bosses who will take timely and decisive action to make their task easier.”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/opinion/89454212/Editorial-Why-did-it-take-so-long-to-declare-state-of-emergency Comment RT – “Yes, it was the neutralisation of regional government by district and central government in cahoots, that left hills residents so dangerously out on a limb. Without that unseemly plot, collaboration and resources could have been swung in, through ECan CDEM services, from first light on the Tuesday to stop the fires cold. Shameful top-level performances, yet again: so ready to blame front-line fire-fighters, as at the CTV building collapse. Beyond shame, a deregulating City and Beehive are culpable!”

Port Hills on dark 150217

South Christchurch Port Hills, on dark, 15 Feb 2017 – Sugarloaf, Victoria Park and Worsleys Spur all fire-involved, left to right

Thursday 16 February 2017
After lower Sugarloaf had flared it soon went dark, with Victoria Park more flame-free overnight. But a day of downgraded hazard was needed for assurance that the fire was burning out up there, while it burnt on more strongly in the Adventure Park valley below and with the western fire areas more at risk under prevailing easterly wind conditions. A day of extended, thus exaggerated, panic pending better official reports from the fire fronts that were slow in coming – very formal conservatism characterises response from start to finish. ‘Safety first’.

Port Hills fires: Live updates – extract
“12.59am The Port Hill fires have now merged into one, developing significantly during the afternoon and into this evening. At least three additional houses have been destroyed in the area of Worsleys Rd
2am Six people from Pentworth Pl in Westmorland have been evacuated and are sleeping over at Te Hapua, which has been opened for evacuated residents, along with Nga Hau e Wha Marae. It appears most people that have been evacuated have found their own accommodation. In addition to rural fire staff, a group of 86 made up of 50 New Zealand Police and 36 New Zealand Defence Force personnel are working overnight on the Port Hills Fire response. They are doing evacuations, joint patrols and reassuring people in the areas impacted by the fires
3.25am There are still some very active fire fronts up on the Port Hills, but not as many as there were prior to midnight. A large number of fire crews have been on the ground working hard to protect properties overnight. A drop in fire activity can also be attributed to a decrease in temperature and a rise in humidity. Helicopters are expected to start an aerial attack at first light. Approximately 400 households have been evacuated in the areas around Victoria Park/Dyers Pass Road, Worsleys Rd, Westmorland and Kennedys Bush
4.55am Police are now evacuating residents downhill of the Sign of the Takahe on Dyers Pass Rd as far as and including Kiteroa Pl and Pentre Tce. Residents will be contact directly by police who are in the area now knocking on doors. If you feel unsafe, you are advised to self-evacuate. Police have continued to express concerns about traffic and people in the area and directed all non-residents to stay away, keeping it clear for emergency services
6.06am More than 1000 residents have fled their homes and at least eight properties have burned to the ground as a huge wild fire rages on in Christchurch. Several fires have now merged into one which is threatening dense residential housing. The blaze is estimated to have scorched more than 1850ha of land and is still growing.
6.24am The latest report is the fire has spread to the harbour side of Sugar Loaf. Evacuations are continuing on the Port Hills with a total of 450 properties officially evacuated. Others have self-evacuated as the fire spread overnight
6.44am Helicopter crews are starting to rejoin firefighting efforts. Aerial teams could be seen leaving the Christchurch Airport area at daybreak on Thursday
6.46am Civil Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee will arrive in Christchurch on Thursday morning. He has been critical of how long it took for a State of Emergency to be declared and questioned why rural firefighters were in charge of a fire inside the city boundaries.
6.55am Around 126 homes remain without power due to the fire
7.30am Broadcast provider Kordia has activated its disaster recovery plan as the fire engulfs land around Sugar Loaf. It has activated its disaster recovery plan and is transporting spare equipment to Christchurch
7.52am Military help for Christchurch is on standby – but hasn’t yet been asked for. Lieutenant Colonel Rob Loftus said almost 40 Defence Force personnel are on the ground so far. The Defence Force has been helping out with evacuations. Civil Defense minister Gerry Brownlee said it is up to the Fire Service to ask for further help – he is concerned they’ll leave it too late, Newstalk ZB reports
9:22am The Civil Defence bunker at Parliament is being activated
11.19am The impact of the fires on people is starting to be felt. Canterbury Civil Defence Controller John Mackie said they received a report of five incidents from health services. He said health and welfare services are also turning their attention to the psycho-social impact of the fires
11:32am More fire appliances are being called to the Christchurch Adventure Park to help battle the fire
12:12pm Firefighters in the Christchurch Adventure Park have setup monitoring stations at the base of the chairlift and cafe as a contingency plan
12:15pm Flames 6 to 8 metres tall are threatening a house at Kennedys Bush. Two fire crews are on the way
12.17pm Fire crews on Worsleys Rd have lost water pressure and are attempting to get it back
12.45pm Prime Minister Bill English and Gerry Brownlee are in the air surveying the fire scene
4:29pm Firefighters are calling for more water tankers up Kennedys Bush Rd to assist fighting the fire. They have asked for 4WD vehicle specifically. Firefighters have noticed another flare up
7:24pm Cordons remain in place with police and Defence Force staff patrolling
10:09pm ‘While there are still areas burning out of control, the fire is contained within the 2075 hectare area.'”
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/live-update-day/

From the archives: A tale of two boys
http://www.noted.co.nz/currently/profiles/from-the-archives-a-tale-of-two-boys/

Port Hills fire: 11 homes destroyed, 1000 people evacuated
http://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/news/emergency/port-hills-fire-800-people-evacuated-many-ordered-out-of-bed-overnight/

Christchurch Port Hills fires: What you need to know on Thursday
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89462014/christchurch-port-hills-fires-what-you-need-to-know

Watch: Christchurch wakes to a city ablaze
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/watch-christchurch-wakes-to-a-city-ablaze/

Map: The extent of the blaze
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/the-extent-of-the-blaze/

New video shows devastation at Christchurch Adventure Park
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/new-video-shows-devastation-at-christchurch-adventure-park.html

Mayors defend actions after Minister Brownlee criticism “The two mayors met with Brownlee today and afterward Dalziel defended the handling of the fire, saying she and Broughton had declared the state of emergency to ensure people took it seriously when told to evacuate rather than because of the need for more resources. ‘We did that together not because it was needed for any resources to be brought to bear but because it was to give people confidence that when the Police told them they were to evacuate, they were to evacuate: this is an emergency.’ She said there were already sufficient resources in place to fight the fire and the state of emergency was called within an hour and a half of the mayors being advised people were being evacuated”
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11802069

Friday 17 February 2017

Editorial: Lack of information on Port Hills fires excruciating “Some will say that when a crisis of this magnitude hits, people need to get on with dealing with it, rather than telling people what is going on. This is misguided. Reliable information is crucial in dangerous times – to calm public anxiety, to mobilise resources from within the community, to tell people to move when they need to, and to warn people to stay away at times. … Fear and hysteria are more likely when people are ill-informed. In Christchurch this week, the state of emergency was declared 48 hours after the fires started, after mass evacuations began and only after a serious escalation of the blazes which might have been foreseen in a worst-case-scenario risk assessment. Civil Defence guidelines state that states of emergency should be declared ‘early rather than late’ – advice which seems to have been ignored in this case. No-one can doubt the bravery and dedication of those on the front lines, but there seems to have been blocked lines of communication at the strategic level. Maybe part of the problem is that New Zealand, a country of just 4.5 million people, has multiple layers of authorities and agencies with sometimes conflicting roles. The fires have burned across the boundaries of Christchurch City and Selwyn District, which is why the state of emergency was declared jointly by mayors Lianne Dalziel and Sam Broughton. How long did it take them to co-ordinate that decision? Could a single authority have done it more quickly? Brownlee had the power to declare an emergency himself, as did the wider-area Civil Defence Emergency Management Group, but they did not do so. The Selwyn Rural Fire Authority was the lead agency in fighting the fires, which seemed incongruous once houses in Christchurch city suburbs began to burn. There has to be a swifter and simpler way of dealing with emergencies, and in letting people know how to react. That needs to be one of the lessons learned from these fires.” http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/opinion/89503846/editorial-lack-of-information-on-port-hills-fires-excrutiating

Civil Defence Minister believes state of emergency should’ve been declared earlier
https://www.maoritelevision.com/news/regional/civil-defence-minister-believes-state-emergency-shouldve-been-declared-earlier

Port Hills fire: ‘Impact is the biggest in NZ history’ “The fire broke out on Monday night and was at it’s peak on Wednesday afternoon when two huge columns of smoke started to build, intensifying the flames and pushing crews to their limit. ‘A lot of people are asking why we weren’t putting water on it while it was burning away,’ said Rural Fire sector boss Phil Crutchley. ‘We were looking at 100,000 kilowatts of temperature per square metre – any water we put on that just evaporated. We just pulled back, it was just too dangerous. There was nothing we could do that would have stopped that.’ As a result, homes were lost and other properties damaged – but he made no apology. The columns had the power of two atomic bombs behind them and there was nothing on earth that could have been done to take the guts out of them.”
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/port-hills-fire-impact-is-the-biggest-in-nz-history/

Beginning of Port Hills fire: How McCarthy Contractors responded when they first saw smoke “Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel and Selwyn Mayor Sam Broughton conceded there were communication problems between the different fire organisations in Canterbury, and declaring a state of emergency took too long.”
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11802653

Firefighters were sent home early from Christchurch fire response, union says “New Zealand Professional Firefighters Union Secretary Derek Best has called for an independent inquiry. He said firefighters were sent home for 90 minutes at nightfall on Monday after they had contained but not extinguished the fire. Just an hour and a half later they were called back to the scene, but it was too late. … an inquiry was needed not just into the fire services but into the entire disaster response. ‘Really the same issues from the Christchurch earthquake are still present.’ … Early Valley Rd homeowner Ken McKenzie believed … ‘If action had been taken quicker and we’d got more resources to the site … it should have been able to be stopped before it headed towards town. ‘If they got helicopters and bulldozers in, it could have been stopped. The issue I have is pretty much the organisation, the level above – there’s something drastically wrong.'” http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89546268/firefighters-were-sent-home-early-from-christchurch-fire-response-union-says

Port Hills fire: Firefighters ‘needlessly’ called away
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/324689/port-hills-fire-firefighters-‘needlessly’-called-away

‘Tomorrow it will hit me’: Emotional firefighter describes Port Hills fire fury “exhaustion and low morale among the firefighters in the first few days.. But when the fire became contained, the mood changed.”
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/tomorrow-it-will-hit-me-emotional-firefighter-describes-port-hills-fire-fury/

Analysis: What could have been done to stop the Port Hills blaze? “Canterbury Civil Defence controller John Mackie says officials were ‘just going by the book’ when leaving the initial response to the fires to Selwyn’s rural fire team, rather than Christchurch officials. ‘That’s prescribed in the act… the responsibility for the rural fire lies on the authority in whose area it starts – even though it may cross a boundary, that jurisdiction doesn’t change.’ Mackie says Canterbury’s Civil Defence group set up an emergency operations centre early on Wednesday morning, as Governors Bay came under threat, and made the case for a state of emergency when evacuations started to increase later that afternoon. Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel denies officials were too slow to declare a state of emergency, saying work on the declaration began ‘from the moment we were advised that people were being evacuated from their houses’. There was no issue of firefighters lacking in numbers, Mackie says – it was simply that they felt they had the fire under control, before the weather began to conspire against them. ‘The rural fire officers were saying that they had ample resources available: it was only when [there was an] escalation of the number of people being evacuated, and the [increased] risk to urban residents, that was the main reason for the declaration.’ But couldn’t there have been more helicopters with monsoon buckets in the air, or firefighters on the ground? Not according to Selwyn Mayor Sam Broughton, who says there are more choppers available than there is room for them. ‘We’re at saturation point in the sky – there’s not another helicopter that could fit in the space safely.’ … Labour Port Hills MP Ruth Dyson says lessons from the response to the fire can wait until after it is extinguished for good.”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/89466598/analysis-what-could-have-been-done-to-stop-the-port-hills-blaze

Hosking critiques Civil Defence 190217

Mike Hosking critiques Civil Defence response, Seven Sharp 17 Feb 2017


Mike Hosking on Seven Sharp, TV1 – ‘Nationalise Civil Defence, scrap regional CDEM’ http://tvnz.co.nz/seven-sharp/mike-s-view-communication-hopeless-during-christchurch-fire-disaster-video-6515331 – This simplistic view is circulating amongst those distant from response, where the instinct to ‘make the chaotic situation sensible’ overrides grasp of reality.

In disasters, scale overwhelms sensibility. Reporting can far from keep pace. So many moving parts and uncertainties are involved that synchronisation is not possible. Responders are overwhelmed, trying to face down the unleashed hazard. Every scrap of resource is needed. This can include many, many volunteers. These are ground factors that will never be fully known, understood or controlled at a distance.

Hosking and Brownlee’s wish for centralised civil defence would be to put many more people in much greater harms way, without the ability to confront and respond to their own challenges immediately, directly and collectively, on the ground they discover and face. That is why what the mis-leaders want hasn’t been the case.

The regional system of response escalation simply needs to be understood, supported and made to work. This starts with identifying and removing the particular empowered obstacles to regional civil defence who oppose and inhibit it, to great public detriment. Look to the statements and behaviour of all the local mayors we’ve had especially. City has consistently undermined region, so far. Unacceptable.

Saturday 18 February 2017
Christchurch City Council and Civil Defence held a first large meeting with evacuated residents, in Spreydon’s South-West Baptist Church gymnasium on the Saturday morning ending a fiery week. Attendees were mostly from Kennedy’s Bush and very distressed. Easterly winds still held their homes most at risk, that they hadn’t really understood until this point. Recently-buried asbestos on private land was of great concern and news to most residents too; ECan fronted to say this had been approved. Every evacuated area was represented at the meeting where information flow was roundly criticised and a single online up-to-date source demanded; also, hourly email updates from council on what was happening. These started around mid-day the next day, semi-hourly. Collated: https://ccc.govt.nz/the-council/newsline/show/1406

Council’s primary goal out of this meeting was to break it down into more manageable, evacuated street by street meetings (which took place the following Thursday, 23 Feb). Next to the fire, residents were being hosed down now. They were understandably angered by inept emergency response leading to property damage, disruption and loss. After 90 minutes many were were walking out though and an outside corridor large informal meet-up ensued. The city mayor wanted to join it as the back of the gym audience hadn’t been connecting with the front, unheard due to poor microphone sharing and crowd engagement. Dalziel was peremptorily reminded by those still seated though, “We’re the ones paying attention!” and had to continue on-stage for a later closing.

Alistair Humphreys addresses fire evacuees 18Feb2017

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health, Alistair Humphreys addresses fire evacuees, 18 Feb 2017


NZ Fire Service and Civil Defence etc reps answer fire evacuee questions 18Feb2017

NZ Fire Service, Rural Fire and Civil Defence etc reps answer fire evacuee questions, 18 Feb 2017

John Key’s government had sacked the wrong council, for private profit, early 2010. A regional response would have been more powerful, sooner, with likely much better results than this very obvious fire response debacle.

Communications and cordons heavily criticised at Port Hills meeting “Dalziel promised that the council would review the response and do better in the future. The meeting came a day after the professional firefighters union told media they could have extinguished the fire on Monday, had they not been sent home for 90 minutes.”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89559332/communications-and-cordons-heavily-criticised-at-port-hills-meeting

Port Hills fire: more than 100 properties still cordoned
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/324774/port-hills-fire-more-than-100-properties-still-cordoned

Sunday 19 February 2017
Port Hills residents clean up and clear out
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89576326/port-hills-residents-clean-up-and-clear-out

Parts of Christchurch’s Port Hills likely to remain closed for several weeks
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89564881/parts-of-christchurchs-port-hills-likely-to-remain-closed-for-several-weeks

Mark Reason: John Key goes from PM to shameless salesman in record time “Who knows what Key believes in, although certainly investment in himself and engagement of us seem near to top of the list” http://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/opinion/89532461/Mark-Reason-John-Key-goes-from-PM-to-shameless-salesman-in-record-time

Monday 20 February 2017 – one week on

‘Nobody wants a dead hero’: celebrated Christchurch fires helicopter pilot Steve Askin farewelled http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/89581850/funeral-for-celebrated-christchurch-fires-helicopter-pilot-steve-askin

Firefighters could have died if not pulled back during Port Hills blaze “When you’ve got that amount of heat coming up the hill and big boulders rolling down the hill, what do you think is the right call in that situation.”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/89581311/bad-weather-grounds-helicopters-fighting-port-hills-blaze

While Christchurch burns, Wellington talks “‘bringing together rural, urban, volunteer and paid urban firefighters into one national organisation for the first time’. The new Fire and Emergency New Zealand (Fenz) will mean ‘a much better standard of service delivery, a much better deal for our rural and volunteer firefighters and a much better deal for New Zealanders’ … The response in Christchurch suggested an uncoordinated system. Who should have called a state of emergency and when, exactly? Why, Brownlee asked, were the rural fire services leading things? ‘I’m perplexed as to why you’ve got the Selwyn District or rural firefighters running things inside Christchurch City Council district boundaries’ … The updated law, after advice from firefighters, will clarify that letting a fire burn can be a valid response to a fire. … only NZ First was opposed to moving this legislation on to the next phase. … Two reports from Australia have convinced him [Clayton Mitchell] that mergers of urban and rural services favour the urban culture at the expense of rural. Do we risk driving the rural volunteers away?” [emphasis added] http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/89488611/while-christchurch-burns-wellington-talks

Port Hills fire evacuations: ‘Nothing ever seems to change’
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/324856/port-hills-fire-evacuations-‘nothing-ever-seems-to-change’

Dunne responds to criticism of Port Hills fire
http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/201833839/dunne-responds-to-criticism-of-port-hills-fire

Christchurch Mayor criticised for lack of information
http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/201833830/christchurch-mayor-criticised-for-lack-of-information

Port Hills resident frustrated at lack of information
http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/201833828/port-hills-resident-frustrated-at-lack-of-information

Civil Defence ‘failing’ to give Port Hills residents vital info
http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/201833816/civil-defence-‘failing’-to-give-port-hills-residents-vital-info

Mike Yardley: Response to Christchurch fires from officials ‘rudderless’ “as the past seven days have unfolded, a multitude of alarm bells have been rightly rung about the cack-handed response and somewhat rudderless leadership from officialdom. The acting Civil Defence Minister, Gerry Brownlee, was far from alone in feeling ‘perplexed’ at the belated nature of the state of civil emergency being declared. Social media lit up on Wednesday afternoon, as the inferno raging across the Port Hills seemingly galloped out of control. Hundreds of residents vented their increasing dismay and disbelief at the apparent failure of the Selwyn and Christchurch mayors to get to grips with the enormity of the ever-billowing threat. Individuals were pleading with Mayor Dalziel and senior city councillors, via their Facebook pages, to urgently declare a state of emergency. It took a further two hours after Westmorland was suddenly evacuated at 4pm, before the declaration was issued. Some hillside residents had packed and were ready to self-evacuate at 1pm. They could see the situation gravely deteriorating, first-hand.”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89612043/mike-yardley-response-to-christchurch-fires-from-officials-rudderless
– Yardley’s anti-ECan positioning has long blinded him to insight into defective regional response. Use what we have, don’t hinder it! Yardley’s wanting “declaration issued much earlier in the afternoon” is a joke. First thing Tuesday was the right time, the only time to have hit the fires from the air with everything possible and cauterise the threat. A declaration then would have been entirely reasonable, given the extreme dry hills risk at this time and that fire spanned two district boundaries – the ECan CDEM action trigger, purportedly. Declaration early Tuesday and military resources were available as regional council options, but ECan naysayers like Mike and Gerry have it firmly in a sealed box, held captive and useless. At least Huntsbury remained safe. Not.

John Campbell on RNZ Checkpoint – ‘What went wrong? It depends who you ask’
Hundreds of people waiting to return home after Port Hills fire
http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/201833922/hundreds-of-people-waiting-to-return-home-after-port-hills-fire
– helping Ruth Dyson provide cover for ongoing National-Labour CDEM botches,
Fire and Emergency Bill would provide clarity in major events
http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/201833923/fire-and-emergency-bill-would-provide-clarity-in-major-events

Tuesday 21 February 2017

Port Hills fire – Update Tuesday 12:20pm: State of Emergency extended
“‘this remains a serious situation that requires a significant and coordinated multi-agency response,’ the Mayor said. ‘While the State of Emergency terminates tomorrow evening, we are mindful of the significance of 22 February to the Canterbury community and as a result we agreed it was appropriate to consider the status of the State of Emergency today.’ The extension automatically lasts for seven days, but can be terminated earlier. The Joint Committee will meet on Friday to consider the transition to recovery. That will be an appropriate time to reconsider the need for the State of Emergency to remain in place”
https://ccc.govt.nz/the-council/newsline/show/1406

State of Emergency extended: ‘The fire is not out’
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/state-of-emergency-extended-the-fire-is-not-out/

Wednesday 22 February 2017

Christchurch Civil Defence
Port Hills Fire – Update #8 – 5.30pm
“Fire progress: The Fire Service is pleased to announce that good progress has been made in controlling the fire in the Worselys Road area. Patrols will continue in the area, but crews will no longer be actively working in the area unless called in for a flare up. Residents are asked to help by being vigilant and to DIAL 111 IMMEDIATELY IF THEY SEE ANY SIGN OF THE FIRE REIGNITING. ‘Our crews have made great progress and we’re pleased to be able to pull back from the Worsleys area, but we really need people to keep a watch on things for us,’ said Fire Service Liaison Officer Bruce Irvine. ‘The more eyes we have out there looking the better.’ Fire services are continuing operations in other areas affected by the fire.”

Christchurch Earthquake Memorial draws on rich tradition of memorials around the world
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/christchurch-earthquake-2011/89638351/christchurch-earthquake-memorial-draws-on-rich-tradition-of-memorials-around-the-world

Thursday 23 February 2017

Christchurch Civil Defence
Port Hills Fire – Update #3 – 1pm
“Fire operations: Fire services advise that 90% of the fire perimeter area is now considered to be controlled. Controlled is defined as bare earth or blacked out ground for at least 10 metres.”

Residents Update:
Port Hills Fire – Update #4 – 1.30pm
“Free GP visits are being offered to people affected by the Port Hills fires, at the discretion of their General Practice team. This includes people who worked on or are still working on fire control and recovery operations. The offer period covers the 2 months from 13 February 2017, the day the fire started.”

24 February 2017

The science behind the South Island’s first fire tornado
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89730960/the-science-behind-the-south-islands-first-fire-tornado

25 February 2017

Port Hills fires recovery managers named
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/89796995/port-hills-fires-recovery-managers-named

National portrait: Richard McNamara, the face of the Port Hills fires
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89700695/national-portrait-richard-mcnamara-the-face-of-the-port-hills-fires

26 February 2017

Port Hills fires rubberneckers ‘not welcome’, says Christchurch City Council
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/89807125/port-hills-fires-rubberneckers-not-welcome-says-christchurch-city-council

A good steady rain, this day – 5-12mm across the fire ground, low-high altitude.

Monday 27 February 2017 – two weeks on

Editorial: Civil Defence faces an uncertain future Fire and Emergency New Zealand – “after Fenz has expanded to include Civil Defence it could eventually broaden to cover ambulance services as well”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/opinion/89779025/editorial-civil-defence-faces-an-uncertain-future

28 February 2017
Government, city council pledge $6 million to grow ‘resilience’ in Canterbury The Press

Wednesday 1 March 2017 – State of Emergency lifted at 6pm

Port Hills fires: State of emergency to lift, hill residents on alert for flare-ups
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/89915130/port-hills-fires-state-of-emergency-to-lift-hill-residents-on-alert

Saturday 4 March 2017

Devastated Port Hills now open to public by road
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/90057550/devastated-port-hills-now-open-to-public

Fire perimeter now fully contained and controlled “Fire authorities working on the Port Hills fire are now confident the fire is substantially under control and are withdrawing overnight patrols.”
https://ccc.govt.nz/the-council/newsline/show/1406

Friday 10 March 2017
Port Hills fires exposed tensions and confusion within fire crews, but change will come The Press http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/90275638/fire-reforms-will-change-way-fires-like-those-in-the-port-hills-are-fought + Firestorm graphical essay research https://assets.stuff.co.nz/interactives/2017/firestorm/

Thursday 20 April 2017
Port Hills fires finally extinguished “Fire authorities say the massive blaze that broke out on Christchurch’s Port Hills two months ago, burning through 2000ha of land, is now completely out.”
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/329135/port-hills-fires-finally-extinguished

Thursday 11 May 2017
Port Hills chopper crash caused by bucket cables – report Radio NZ
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/330550/port-hills-chopper-crash-caused-by-bucket-cables-report

[Further editing may follow]

Live: Homes evacuated as Christchurch Port Hills fires rage out of control 16 Feb 2017
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89455976/live-homes-evacuated-as-christchurch-port-hills-fire-rage-out-of-control

LIVE: Port Hills fire – Day 4 Radio NZ 16 Feb 2017
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/324608/live-battle-to-contain-port-hills-fires-continues

Port Hills blaze: Live updates Newshub
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/port-hills-blaze-live-updates.html +

Christchurch Port Hills blaze in photos
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/christchurch-port-hills-blaze-in-photos.html

Is Civil Defence really in control of the Christchurch fires? “it’s high time for less bureaucracy and more open and honest communication. Civil Defence does not want the blood of New Zealanders on its hands. Who can the public trust in times of national emergency? At the moment it’s the media” Newshub 16 Feb 2017 http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/the-burning-question-is-civil-defence-really-in-control-of-the-christchurch-fires.html

Mayors’ war of words with Brownlee over Port Hills state of emergency “Mr Brownlee said the most accurate information about the fire on Wednesday came from the media – not officials. Those in charge of the fire response have ‘got to learn’ from this experience, Mr Brownlee said. ‘I was in Wellington, not Christchurch.’ Prime Minister Bill English also confirmed there will be a review of the Civil Defence response and the delay in declaring a state of emergency.” http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/mayors-war-of-words-with-brownlee-over-port-hills-state-of-emergency.html

Patrick Gower: Port Hills fire shows Civil Defence a shambles yet again
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2017/02/patrick-gower-port-hills-fire-shows-civil-defence-a-shambles-yet-again.html

Port Hills fire: 1000 people forced to evacuate “For the second time, James Frost has lost a home to disaster in Christchurch. He said he found out at 11pm on Wednesday that the fire had reached his evacuated home.. while most police officers were good, one of his flatmates was left in tears because of a police officer who ‘didn’t have the people skills to deal with the scenario'” http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/port-hills-blaze-evacuees-forced-to-leave-everything-behind.html

Port Hills community pulls together to find homes for animal evacuees
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/port-hills-community-pulls-together-to-find-homes-for-animal-evacuees.html

Port Hills family loses classic car collection, home in fire
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/port-hills-family-loses-classic-car-collection-home-in-fire.html

Video: Social media reacts to Christchurch fire
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/video-social-media-reacts-to-christchurch-fire.html

[1] CTV refs.
Canterbury Television: New Zealand’s SHAME The Press 10 March 2017
https://riktindall.wordpress.com/2013/10/04/canterbury-television-new-zealands-shame/
September 4 #JUSTICE 4 #CTV families
https://riktindall.wordpress.com/2013/09/04/september-4-justice-4-ctv-families-christchurch-quake-new-zealand-eqnz-ccc-chch-nz/
Civil defence fail compensation due #JohnKey #NZ
https://riktindall.wordpress.com/2013/02/21/civil-defence-fail-compensation-due-johnkey-nz-new-zealand-eqnz-christchurch-quake-chch-cdem-ctv-22feb2011-nzdf-ecan/
#CTV inquest. 214 dead. #EQNZ #PikeRiver #Chch #quake
https://riktindall.wordpress.com/2013/01/21/ctv-inquest-214-dead-eqnz-pikeriver-chch-quake-cdem-nz-arrestjohnkey-ecan-ows-christchurch/

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1. We all mean well, at least initially, and struggle to express this.

2. As an intensely competitive species, our struggle can employ critical thought or default to violence.

3. Compassionate, affinity and spiritual emotions seek more than second place.

4. Agreement on anything is amongst our greatest challenges, words always fail us.

5. Religion emerged in human history to forge large-scale agreements, especially in law for peace.

6. Agreement, truth and belief are related within culture that scientific method tests into known facts.

7. Belief and faith were culturally-sanctioned agreements pre-dating science and survive subjectively.

8. Religion was not only the law we had, before we developed secular, rights-based law.

9. Religion was also the science we had, before we developed science.

10. Religion was the medicine we had, before we developed medicine.

11. Religion was the politics we had, before we developed politics.

12. Religion was the arts form we had, before we re-liberated the arts.

13. Other forms of all these things existed before we developed religion.

14. Religion filled many gaps for many years, before we improved the knowledge and expertise.

15. Religion made systematic a compassionate choice for the earliest organised societies, for good.

16. Religion was the original statecraft and as such is unavailable today.

17. Hope for a better world that conforms with derived belief has many still clinging to religion.

18. The world and universe do not conform with belief, human or supernatural, being material facts.

19. The growth of religion has been primarily the growth of human unity of purpose, always needed.

20. Religious study teaches us things about human unity that nothing else can, our major driver.

21. Religion is easily misunderstood, undervalued and dismissed, as a social fact, to our detriment.

22. Religion has always been exploited to justify evil killing, not killing evil, which needs to cease.

23. Our tribal nature explains most about religion and transcendence it can bring.

24. What makes a god real in one culture is the same for every god in every other culture.

25. Faith as a unifying mechanism merges many gods into one god, logically and historically.

26. From many gods (superstitious causation theory) came one god (politically unified superstitious causation).

27. Superstitious belief held science and industrial transformation back unsuccessfully in western Europe?

[Third draft – more to come – thanks for visiting]

Trends:

Losing our religion: Kiwis losing the faith in record numbers – Newshub, 6 Feb 2017 http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/losing-our-religion-kiwis-losing-the-faith-in-record-numbers.html

Re: Christchurch imaginary killer tsunami

The 14 November early-morning debacle 2016, where false tsunami evacuation alerts panicked so many into a dark night after the Wairau 7.8-magnitude earthquake, was unacceptable waste and fear-mongering cry-wolf. Some had homes looted that public donations then had to compensate.[1] These Christchurch city alarms should not have been sounded for this event, two hours too late anyway. Many chose correctly to ignore them. What is going on? Blame government that does not seem to care or even know how to.

The fact is, government knew there was no tsunami risk from the first evaluation but still allowed the panic to waste massive time and resource energy:

“314
WEPA42 PHEB 140042
TIBPAC

TSUNAMI INFORMATION STATEMENT NUMBER 1
NWS PACIFIC TSUNAMI WARNING CENTER EWA BEACH HI
0042 UTC MON NOV 14 2016

…PTWC TSUNAMI INFORMATION STATEMENT…

**** NOTICE **** NOTICE **** NOTICE **** NOTICE **** NOTICE *****

THIS STATEMENT IS ISSUED FOR INFORMATION ONLY IN SUPPORT OF THE
UNESCO/IOC PACIFIC TSUNAMI WARNING AND MITIGATION SYSTEM AND IS
MEANT FOR NATIONAL AUTHORITIES IN EACH COUNTRY OF THAT SYSTEM.

NATIONAL AUTHORITIES WILL DETERMINE THE APPROPRIATE LEVEL OF
ALERT FOR EACH COUNTRY AND MAY ISSUE ADDITIONAL OR MORE REFINED
INFORMATION.

**** NOTICE **** NOTICE **** NOTICE **** NOTICE **** NOTICE *****

PRELIMINARY EARTHQUAKE PARAMETERS
———————————

* MAGNITUDE 6.8
* ORIGIN TIME 0034 UTC NOV 14 2016
* COORDINATES 42.7 SOUTH 173.4 EAST
* DEPTH 10 KM / 6 MILES
* LOCATION SOUTH ISLAND OF NEW ZEALAND

EVALUATION
———-

* AN EARTHQUAKE WITH A PRELIMINARY MAGNITUDE OF 6.8 OCCURRED IN
SOUTH ISLAND, NEW ZEALAND AT 0034 UTC ON MONDAY NOVEMBER 14
2016.

* BASED ON ALL AVAILABLE DATA… THERE IS NO TSUNAMI THREAT
FROM THIS EARTHQUAKE.

RECOMMENDED ACTIONS
——————-

* NO ACTION IS REQUIRED.

NEXT UPDATE AND ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
————————————–

* THIS WILL BE THE ONLY STATEMENT ISSUED FOR THIS EVENT UNLESS
ADDITIONAL DATA ARE RECEIVED OR THE SITUATION CHANGES.

* AUTHORITATIVE INFORMATION ABOUT THE EARTHQUAKE FROM THE U.S.
GEOLOGICAL SURVEY CAN BE FOUND ON THE INTERNET AT
EARTHQUAKE.USGS.GOV/EARTHQUAKES -ALL LOWER CASE-.

* FURTHER INFORMATION ABOUT THIS EVENT MAY BE FOUND AT
PTWC.WEATHER.GOV AND AT WWW.TSUNAMI.GOV.

* COASTAL REGIONS OF HAWAII… AMERICAN SAMOA… GUAM… AND
CNMI SHOULD REFER TO PACIFIC TSUNAMI WARNING CENTER MESSAGES
SPECIFICALLY FOR THOSE PLACES THAT CAN BE FOUND AT
PTWC.WEATHER.GOV.

* COASTAL REGIONS OF CALIFORNIA… OREGON… WASHINGTON…
BRITISH COLUMBIA AND ALASKA SHOULD ONLY REFER TO U.S.
NATIONAL TSUNAMI WARNING CENTER MESSAGES THAT CAN BE FOUND
AT NTWC.ARH.NOAA.GOV.

$$” – http://ptwc.weather.gov/?region=1&id=pacific.TIBPAC.2016.11.14.0042

The initial earthquake magnitude estimates ran:
http://ptwc.weather.gov/ptwc/text.php?id=pacific.TIBPAC.2016.11.13.1113 7.4
http://ptwc.weather.gov/ptwc/text.php?id=pacific.TIBPAC.2016.11.13.1150 7.9
http://ptwc.weather.gov/ptwc/text.php?id=pacific.TIBPAC.2016.11.13.1304 7.9
http://ptwc.weather.gov/ptwc/text.php?id=pacific.TIBPAC.2016.11.14.0042 6.8
http://ptwc.weather.gov/ptwc/text.php?id=hawaii.TIBHWX.2016.11.14.0043 6.8
So the earthquake size was quite accurately known – until downplayed to 6.6 by GNS Science for days – and tsunami danger was accurately ruled out, by the global tsunami warning centre, from the very start.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Cente 13.11.16 finding conformed with the actual known risk, as assessed by the local authority long-term:

Q-Files - Tsunamis extract Environment Canterbury p.8

Q-Files – Tsunamis extract, Environment Canterbury 2006, p.8

“If tsunami warning sirens sound, or you receive an official warning to evacuate, evacuate the coastal evacuation zones for your district.. You will have several hours to evacuate.. The most likely regional tsunami source for Pegasus Bay is the Hikurangi subduction zone fault, off the Wairarapa/Hawke’s Bay/East Coast coast.. A tsunami from this fault would likely take around 1-3 hours to reach Pegasus Bay. It is unlikely to be large here, but it may flood low lying areas around Sumner, the estuary and Lyttelton Harbour. Sea heights above sea level at the time here would probably be around 1-3 metres.. The chances of a local source tsunami being generated by an earthquake in Pegasus Bay are low and have not changed significantly as a result of the recent earthquakes. Scientists have discovered some earthquake faults on the sea floor in Pegasus Bay, but they appear to move very infrequently (once every few thousand or tens of thousands of years). They are not thought to be big enough, and therefore would not produce enough vertical (up and down) movement, to create a significant tsunami that would flood large amounts of land.. Tsunami sirens will be sounded for a distant source tsunami, where they are installed. If you hear the sirens, you must evacuate the tsunami evacuation zones for your district. You will have several hours to evacuate.”
http://ecan.govt.nz/advice/emergencies-and-hazard/tsunami/pages/default.aspx
http://ecan.govt.nz/publications/General/q-files-tsunamis-booklet.pdf from
http://ecan.govt.nz/advice/emergencies-and-hazard/Pages/booklets-q-files.aspx

Clearly officials panicked at seeing tide levels drop suddenly on 14.11.16, without knowing this was because of shoreline up-thrust. These officials then panicked others, and members of the public into leaving their homes unnecessarily, most ignorant of the actual low risk. The wrongly-imprinted hazard image – of a massively destructive high wall of water coming instantly ashore (like the Boxing Day 2004 Aceh, Indonesia or the March 2011 Sendai, Japan tsunami) – DOES NOT APPLY HERE. All this confusion should come out with the promised investigation of the 14.11.16 response. We live in hope, that it will be both a timely and productive investigation.[2]

The public should take from all this the lesson, to learn what actual tsunami risk exists for their home area and take appropriate precautions. Prepare appropriately and do not be panicked about imagined large tsunami risk in Canterbury ever again.

The difference is, the Alpine Fault is our tectonic plate impact zone – strong enough to build very high mountains (transform fault) – and this is the direct opposite kind of tectonic plate impact to that capable of producing tsunami (subduction fault). FACT. Fear not large tsunami here. Please do share and enlighten further.

The Civil Defence earthquake-tsunami mantra, “Long or strong, get gone” is not argued with here as potentially life-saving general education. But Christchurch’s experience of the 14.11.16 Waiau quake was ‘moderately long but not strong’ so it was not valid cause for fearful running from local shores or for official alarm-sounding. The alarm was therefore a misguided political act: to satisfy public expectations (of an alarm) incorrectly set. Let us work together now to repair this widely cast misconception of risk and relevant response.

nzmcdem-tsu

[1] Generosity of strangers wins out for Christchurch family burgled after quake http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/86419856/Generosity-of-strangers-wins-out-for-Christchurch-family-burgled-after-quake + Robbed Christchurch family to share proceeds with other quake victims
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/nz-earthquake/86494324/Robbed-Christchurch-family-to-share-proceeds-with-other-quake-victims + More than 1000 donors give $40,000 to family burgled after tsunami evacuation http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/crime/86473880/more-than-1000-donors-give-40000-to-family-burgled-after-tsunami-evacuation + ‘Vultures’ stole Christchurch father’s van as he prepared to evacuate family after quakes http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/86529225/vultures-stole-christchurch-fathers-van-as-he-prepared-to-evacuate-family-after-quakes + Thieves still at large after Christchurch earthquake evacuee homes burgled http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/86571543/thieves-still-at-large-after-christchurch-earthquake-evacuee-homes-burgled

[2] Tweet: “MCDEM ‏@NZcivildefence Nov 13 [UTC] People on the east coast (including the Chatham Islands) close to the epicentre can expect waves of 3-5 metres. Move to high ground #eqnz”
Earthquake: Deaths, major damage after severe 7.5 quake hits Hanmer Springs, tsunami warning issued “One person died at a property at Mt Lyford, north of Christchurch. The low-lying seaside suburb of Sumner was deserted after residents evacuated, and schools closed for the day. Lyttelton tunnel has been closed until further notice. A New Brighton family who evacuated their home after the quake returned to find their house ransacked by burglars. Matt Mill said they family-of-four had left their home about 2am, after the tsunami risk was broadcast. They returned to their Bower Ave home about 6.30am to find their home damaged, not from the shaking, nor any tsunami, but by burglars who took advantage of a suburb empty of people. Mill said the burglars stole televisions, sports gear and distressingly, a transmitter for his daughter’s hearing aid. His work truck was also stolen. Linwood resident Alice Coats said the tsunami sirens have been going went off intermittently for a couple of hours. The quake felt like a long wave, Coats said. ‘So, we all knew it was a big one.’ As soon as the tsunami warning came in, it was a little more frightening, so she jumped into her car with her flatmate, and went to the airport. Coats said the vagueness of the Civil Defence warnings were frustrating. Tsunami sirens started sounding along Christchurch’s coastline at 2.14am. A significant amount of traffic moved away from New Brighton and other coastal suburbs towards central Christchurch and the Port Hills. Police and Civil Defence have closed the tunnel (State Highway 74), which links Christchurch with the seaside suburb of Lyttelton. The tunnel has been closed temporarily for checks following previous large earthquakes. In the CBD, hotels and occupied buildings were evacuated.” http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/86416268/Earthquake-Deaths-major-damage-after-severe-7-5-quake-hits-Hanmer-Springs-tsunami-warning-issued 14 November 2016 +
Earthquake: Tsunamis hit, warnings downgraded “Several evacuation centres had been set up in the Waimakariri district, north of Christchurch. Welfare centres had been set up at the Woodend Community Centre, Rangiora Baptist Church, Oxford School Hall, and the Kaiapoi Rugby Club. Linwood College has been set up as a evacuation point for people who have left their home in Christchurch.. People living on low-lying ground within one kilometre of the Christchurch coastline had earlier been advised to evacuate inland or to higher ground as a precaution. Tsunami sirens activated at 2.14am in Christchurch’s coastal suburbs, more than an hour after the first tsunami warnings were issued by Civil Defence. The sirens, located from Brooklands to Taylors Mistake, were meant to sound for about 10 minutes to alert residents they could need to evacuate. A significant amount of traffic could be seen heading away from New Brighton and other coastal suburbs towards central Christchurch and the Port Hills. Early on Monday morning police were driving around the New Brighton area with flashing lights on” http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/nz-earthquake/86416653/cheviot-quake-tsunami-warnings-issued (oh-so-wrong?) MCDEM graphic:

Ministry graphic 141116

NZ Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management graphic 141116 – ref. http://twitter.com/NZcivildefence

Coastal Christchurch residents criticise delay in tsunami warning system “A delay activating tsunami warning sirens could have been life-threatening to those living in Christchurch beach suburbs, residents say. Some are demanding answers as to why sirens did not sound until about 2am, two hours after the magnitude-7.5 earthquake struck and an hour after the national civil defence website instructed coastal residents to move to higher ground immediately. ‘Something needs to be done,’ New Brighton resident Shanna Howden said. If there had been a large wave, Howden questioned whether people could have escaped in time. Heavy traffic and bad roads meant it took 45 minutes for them to get out of New Brighton. ‘There must be a way to put something in place to make it a smoother process,’ she said. Tsunami warnings come from the Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management (MCDEM) in Wellington but local authorities are responsible for civil defence emergency management in their own areas. MCDEM posted its first tsunami warning on its website at 1am. The warning was repeated at 1.30am and not lifted until 3.39am. In Christchurch, the tsunami sirens began at 2am and sounded well beyond dawn. However, messages sent by the ministry to the duty officer at the Christchurch City Council and the Canterbury civil defence emergency management group were less clear. Christchurch mayor Lianne Dalziel said she was more interested in learning from the experience than casting blame. ‘I don’t know what went wrong but it’s important we fix this.’ Canterbury civil defence emergency group controller Neville Reilly said the council’s duty officer had relied on the group’s advice. The group’s decision to wait a couple of hours before firing the sirens was done in consultation with a tsunami scientist but without the knowledge that MCDEM was already instructing evacuation on its website. ‘It would have been nice if there wasn’t the confusion coming from emails which were different from the website,’ he said. ‘The worst thing you want to do is cry wolf although safety is paramount. There’s no black and white.’ MCDEM was unable to respond on Monday.” http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/nz-earthquake/86439726/coastal-christchurch-residents-criticise-delay-in-tsunami-warning-system 14 November 2016
Christchurch Star https://issuu.com/the.star/docs/116322cs 17 November 2016 (censored?)
Civil Defence overhaul ‘inevitable’ after tsunami warning confusion: Govt 17 November 2016 http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/86441740/civil-defence-overhaul-inevitable-after-tsunami-warning-confusion-govt
GNS: Tsunami caught us by surprise http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/kaikoura-earthquake/318506/gns-tsunami-caught-us-by-surprise 20 November 2016 + Govt to push for tsumani text message system http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/318473/govt-to-push-for-tsumani-text-message-system
Civil Defence’s earthquake response to be reviewed http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/kaikoura-earthquake/318584/civil-defence’s-earthquake-response-to-be-reviewed 21 November 2016
Minister criticises GeoNet’s funding call http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/kaikoura-earthquake/318618/minister-criticises-geonet’s-funding-call 22 November 2016
Review of tsunami alerts likely after Kaikoura earthquake “All in all the response to the early morning Kaikoura earthquake seems to have been a bit of a shambles. Frightening for some and a non-event for others.. warning came out from National Civil Defence at 1.20am. Problems had hit the MCDEM website just after 1am with people advised to follow updates on their Facebook and Twitter instead.” http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/nz-earthquake/86742260/review-of-tsunami-alerts-likely-after-kaikoura-earthquake 24 November 2016 Comment:
“Straw Man – please decommission the Christchurch ones too. They caused unnecessary panic and are not even required. Many hours to evacuate in the case of a large tsunami, and not required for local quakes – there is no sub-duction zone off the ChCh coast. And yes, im aware of the 0.5m tsunami from the Kaikora EQ. It was not worth evacuating thousands of people. There was more risk of death or injury resulting from panicking drivers doing dumb things. Also, Pegasus bay does not funnel the swell into a confined space such as little pidgeon bay either. Start with a little education a[nd] ditch this ridiculous culture of fear that we have developed.”

etc

Watch 15 Years Of Earthquakes Rock The Planet
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/earthquake-animation-noaa-pacific-tsunami_us_58420f7ce4b0c68e0480f908? 2 December 2016

9 December 2016
Huge earthquake hits off Solomons, sparks tsunami warning for New Zealand “The earthquake triggered possible tsunami threats across the Pacific. Waves between one metre and 3m were possible along some coasts of the Solomon Islands, with waves from 30cm to 1m possible in Papua New Guinea and Vanuatu, the US Pacific Tsunami Warning Center predicted. A tsunami watch for New Zealand had been issued, but since cancelled by Civil Defence” http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/south-pacific/87378899/Huge-earthquake-hits-off-Solomons-sparks-tsunami-warning-for-New-ZealandLive: Huge earthquake strikes Solomon Islands http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/south-pacific/87379714/Live-Huge-earthquake-strikes-Solomon-IslandsInitial reports suggest ‘3000 people affected’ by earthquake off Solomon Islands “A tsunami watch for New Zealand had been issued, but since cancelled by Civil Defence. Civil Defence continued to advise people to stay out of the water owing to the threat of unusual currents, but said there was no threat to beaches and land. Earlier, Civil Defence controller Sarah Stewart-Black had told RNZ this was ‘not the same situation as after the Kaikoura earthquake’. The US Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said tsunami waves were forecast to be less than 30cm for New Zealand. They could take 4-5 hours to arrive, Civil Defence said. Waves between one metre and 3m were possible along some coasts of the Solomon Islands, with waves from 30cm to 1m possible in Papua New Guinea and Vanuatu, the US authority predicted” http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/south-pacific/87378899/81-magnitude-earthquake-hits-solomons–usgs + Magnitude 6.5 earthquake strikes off coast of Northern California “no tsunami warning, advisory or threat in effect following the earthquake”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/americas/87378423/Magnitude-6-5-earthquake-strikes-off-coast-of-Northern-California

16 December 2016
Selwyn Tsunami evacuation plan
http://www.star.kiwi/2016/12/selwyn-tsunami-evacuation-areas/

20 December 2016
Tsunami evacuation plan kept under wraps “New Brighton residents are furious a tsunami evacuation plan for the area, which could have prevented the traffic chaos, was kept under wraps”
http://www.star.kiwi/2016/12/tsunami-evacuation-plan-kept-under-wraps/

21 December 2016
Coping with an increased risk of quakes “are we in the midst of a period of heightened risk?” asserts random dispersion, no pattern to recent large earthquakes: “The 7.8 Kaikoura quake was one of four earthquakes greater than Magnitude 7 in the last 7 years, and one of only five tremors of that magnitude or larger ever recorded in New Zealand. A similar period of increased activity was seen between 1929 and 1942 when New Zealand experienced a third of all earthquakes of magnitude 7 or larger recorded in the last 160 years..” http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/audio/201828532/coping-with-an-increased-risk-of-quakes

25 December 2016
M 7.6 – ISLA CHILOE, LOS LAGOS, CHILE – 2016-12-25 14:22:26 UTC
http://www.emsc-csem.org/Earthquake/earthquake.php?id=555101
http://www.prh.noaa.gov/hnl/tsunami_msgs/HEBTIBHWX.201612251632

26 December 2016
Book details Wheatsheaf flood after earthquake 1868 & 1960
http://www.star.kiwi/2016/12/book-details-wheatsheaf-flood-after-earthquake/

9 January 2017
Tsunami evacuation spurs action “Civil Defence will be boosted in Little River and Birdlings Flat after residents living near the sea had nowhere to evacuate to after the 7.8 magnitude earthquake on November 14”
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/01/tsunami-evacuation-spurs-action/

11 January 2017
Earthquake rattles Wellington and the upper South Island “hit at 1.19pm on Wednesday, jolting office workers across the capital” http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/nz-earthquake/88313350/Earthquake-rattles-Wellington-and-the-upper-South-Island

12 January 2017
Water in Marlborough aquifers rises after 7.8-magnitude earthquake “gaps between the gravel that formed the aquifers had shrunk, causing wells to spill over.. too early to say whether the 7.8-magnitude quake had caused any permanent damage to the underground water network” http://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/88274851/water-in-marlborough-aquifers-rises-after-78magnitude-earthquake

[post under edit – return to read more later – thanks for viewing]

Changes to follow tsunami confusion in Christchurch 7 April 2017
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/91330663/changes-to-follow-tsunami-confusion-in-christchurch

Tsunami evacuations: What went wrong? 7 April 2017
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/04/tsunami-evacuations-what-went-wrong/

Plan to improve tsunami response released “staff, police and Mayor Lianne Dalziel were confused about conflicting messages between national and local Civil Defence” 12 August 2017
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/08/plan-to-improve-tsunami-response/

The real and major risk for mid-Canterbury is not coastal – Project AF8: http://projectaf8.co.nz/ – Alpine Fault Magnitude 8

The New Zealand Labour Party just showed voting is not about democracy but their bureaucratic privilege, not about principle but only corporate power.

The 2016 local elections confirmed Labour corruption as the greatest non-natural hazard to New Zealand communities – the adjunct reflection of Tory corruption, bogus presentation of empty alternative. This truth makes them unelectable, ever again, and explains declining voter turnout and resident disengagement: Labour deviously monopolises community politics for any and all available wins to their spirit-crushing machine.

Communities will not find ways forward – out of increasing corporate control, unaffordable housing, loss of natural environment and growing natural hazards – except through electorally smashing the NZLP then starting over again in communities’ interests instead. 2017 is almost soon enough for this essential project.

Various fake lefts tell you otherwise, to try choosing Labour again to displace National, but let us look at facts.

The Christchurch public has only quietly been informed that their new Papanui ward councillor is actually the returning mayor’s son-in-law.[1] So you have to ask whether proper prior knowledge of this would have affected the outcome: Mike “Davidson said he did not believe his family relationship with Dalziel would change how he operated as a councillor”[2] – yeah, right? Davidson is now part of a highly dominant, dynastic centrist bloc.
[1] http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/opinion/84403451/Mike-Yardley-Apathy-rules-in-Christchurch-elections
[2] http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/85129112/five-new-christchurch-councillors-join-the-ranks-while-another-is-ousted
Hasty Press update http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/85307289/new-christchurch-city-councillor-mike-davidson-breaks-family-curse 16-Oct-2016

Labour-rort government only gets worse the harder you look at it.

Another example here, where a campaigning Karolin Potter, Spreydon-Heathcote Community Board chair, demonstrates dishonest hypocrisy for People’s Choice at a Keep New Zealand Beautiful local clean-up event:

Addington Times October 2016 p1

Addington Times October 2016 p1, Karolin Potter in bottom left picture in blue

Potter’s Labour-dominated board had withdrawn all support for KNZB in 2015, to spitefully and corruptly prevent one Board member from ever working with it. This officially appointed SHCB KNZB rep had to pay their own way to the national KNZB conference in Christchurch that year, with zero Board support. By comparison, Potter claimed an all-expenses, disability-enabled long weekend hotel trip to Waitangi, Bay of Islands, for the LGNZ conference in 2014 – a privilege of high office with Labour. The SHCB KNZB rep was the only SHCB member who attended every one of the SHCB 2013-2016 term meetings, working diligently.

The corrupt ouster and takeover of all SHCB seats in 2016, using paid council staff to reinforce Labour local power, is already part-documented here: riktindall.wordpress.com/2016/06/06/corporate-fascism-at-ccc-sampson-to-resign-christchurch-city-council-nzlabour-nzpol-newzealand-politics/. An update is here.

So to the Environment Canterbury (ECan) part-election of 2016.

The first things people need to know are:
a) How much ECan money has Working Waters Trust ever received – by date and amount?
b) What ECan staff are or have been a part of Working Waters Trust?

If there are material answers to these questions then electoral fraud has just been conducted by the NZ Labour Party. Because the director of Working Waters Trust, Lan Pham, has just been elected to ECan councillor on Labour’s behalf – perhaps using rate-payer resource. We need to know. Is this council staff or contractors determining public representation?! A shocking corporate turn of events.

Pham’s fraud is well-documented in “the People’s Choice” campaign statements, where ‘defending democracy’ was the last of their core policy trio: clean water, better public transport, “a democratic ECan”. Having had the opportunity to choose solidarity against National’s unwarranted deposing of the 2007-elected ECan council, to support one representative of that council in running again, Pham chose not to. Instead Pham took personal advantage of National’s coup. But not only that, Pham directed voters AWAY from solidarity with the elected ECan council representative, in crooked Labour team- and self-serving manner:

Lan Pham Facebook campaign 170816

Lan Pham Facebook campaign screenshot 170816

ECan candidate handbook, electoral offences, extract p.31

ECan candidate handbook, electoral offences, extract p.31

ECan candidate handbook, electoral offences, extract p.31

Pham’s call here, over which four ECan candidates voters should choose – to NOT support representation from the deposed ECan council – advantaged her Labour-backed team by splitting the vote such that all three People’s Choice candidates then gained election. And, it was highly illegal to have influenced voters in this way.

Pham’s electoral offence is described at left here, from ECan candidate handbook p.31.

Graphic extract source: ecan.govt.nz/publications/Council/LGE2016_CandidateHandbook_ECan_v10.pdf

Lan Pham is therefore a false democrat, undeserving of an elected public role, at the least for this published prejudice. Pham’s campaign action, on behalf of ‘the firm’, shows precisely why Environment Canterbury is so disliked and so distrusted by so many people. e.g. “Cattle in Christchurch river were on Canterbury regional council’s land”, 12 October 2016 – stuff.co.nz/environment/85202980/cattle-in-christchurch-river-were-on-canterbury-regional-councils-land – The many false democrats who have ‘liked’ this electoral offence is equally revealing.

Labour’s dirty tactics, in replacing community reps with council staff or contractors, is to achieve one thing only: corporate monopoly at local political level. Never to listen and share or to innovate, never to allow a community voice. Always to dictate. In the ECan case it is to dishonestly claim back leadership in clean-water activism where they had lost it, quite rightly, in 2007. Labour is fully responsible for irrigation and intensive farming development in Canterbury and its polluting effects. And they know it. Rotten fouls like this, like Lan Pham’s here, are futile attempts to recover the Labour reputation and to overtly cover their highly polluting tracks.

So how did the Labour ECan campaign appearances roll? Lan Pham never appeared, except by remote video, at any candidate forum: she wasn’t in the South Island until Ocober 1st. A swathe of scientific helpers, likers and supporters pushed Pham to online/media victory. This dragged the rest of her team forward, regardless of what little they knew or had to say. Cynthia Roberts decried the Canterbury Water Management Strategy work (of the previous elected council). Steve Lowndes repeated John Key’s lie, that the previous elected council was ‘quagmired with 7:7 drawn votes’ (there was only one 7:7 vote during the 2007-2010 ECan term and that was still a decision, for the status quo). Lowndes extended Labour’s election fraud by campaigning with the ECan corporate logo very prominently on his website (unless the ECan logo design copyright belongs to him?) …

Steve Lowndes ECan campaign screenshot Oct-2016

Steve Lowndes ECan campaign screenshot, June to October 2016

ECan candidate handbook, electoral offences, extract p.17

ECan candidate handbook, electoral offences, extract p.17

Lowndes’ electoral offence is described at left here, from ECan candidate handbook p.17.

Confirming that Labour now conveniently sings from the Tory songbook, in its criticism of the 2007-2010 elected council that echoes National’s lies, Rod Cullinane, for Fish & Game (the farmers of the rivers and lakes) claims “the internal disarray was untenable” at ECan in this interview: stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/84590193/the-issues-what-do-the-ecan-candidates-think.

The Press had picked the four 2016 ECan winners at the very outset of campaigning. Using a two-day ultimatum for comment to publish, here they cemented their gatekeeper choice in. The Press is yet to be honest and add what was sent to them on the third day: https://communityvoice.nz/2016/09/25/the-press-interview-23-9-16/

From this identified basis of bias, misrepresentation and outright lying, we can understand exactly what the minority local vote of 2016 represents. No one else, with an honest brain, believes in the local governance. Myth-makers rule. 38.29% of eligible voters had a say on ECan and 38.34% on the Christchurch City candidates.

Thus, having understood the Christchurch 2016 vote in detail – what it represents and what largely drove it – we know precisely what governs our day-to-day lives. We, the people, strongly need local ethical upgrade and the ability to contribute, for moving forward.

http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/201819311/labour’s-local-government-success-a-springboard-for-2017 – clearly Not.

http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/opinion/85144199/chris-trotter-democracys-disappearing-hand is Labour local hegemony.

This week’s Youth Focus event saw PYLAT, Youth Voice Canterbury and Christchurch Youth Council combine, to engage and inform in the 2016 local elections.* Over two evenings, west and east Christchurch city council wards were all covered thoroughly, with candidate Q+As. Regional council and district health board candidates also had opportunity to introduce themselves, briefly. A city environs context was very much set. Mental health and entertainment activities for Christchurch youth were core concerns. Youth Focus was great! Thank you.

Cruize Erueti takes on the Labour establishment, Youth Focus 270916

Cruize Erueti takes on the Labour establishment, Youth Focus 270916

On the second evening, a mayoral debate exposed the competence of the candidate range. Tubby Hansen did not appear, Lianne Dalziel and John Minto did. Public transport and river quality promises then tripped them up.

On the buses, Dalziel called upon Environment Canterbury Regional Council (ECan) and/or central Government to “give them back” to the Christchurch City Council (CCC), asserting they were both the same thing having equal power to deliver this. But is it a fact? Demonstrably wrong about the ECan partner, Dalziel claimed that after the elections a commissioner majority will hold sway there so the organisation was a write-off. Elected members will from October become the ECan majority, actually. So has this Mayor been listening or just wrapped up in her own acquired authority? Minto’s promise to make bus travel free, and to pay for it from cancelled government road projects, impossibly exceeds the mayoral role.

Youth Focus mayoral debate 270916 - pic by PYLAT

Youth Focus mayoral debate 270916 – pic by PYLAT

On Christchurch city rivers, Minto’s promise to clean them up and make them “swimmable” traps him in a rural debate over which, again, he can have little agency – of debatable point or achievable reality. This is empty pitching to the galleries. Enough.

The gem in this debate was Dalziel’s announced discovery from Hurunui District Council, that the youth council can become a standing committee of CCC, with all CCC committee chairs then taking a seat alongside them. It would raise the effect of the youth voice through direct access to the city council. A declared challenge was then how much the Christchurch Youth Council has been valuing its independence. So a trade-off is on offer in the incumbent mayor’s election policy.

Minto’s long experience as a high school teacher qualifies him with a well-tuned ear for where youth issues of the city are at, albeit having arrived here only last year.

The model of ‘youth community boards’, initiated in the city south and advocated by at least one community board candidate for the north next, factors in all this. Are they or will they be subordinate to the Christchurch Youth Council, as recognised by CCC? What democratic elected structure and scope is likely to pertain?

These sure are interesting times for youth politics in Christchurch city. Dynamic. Inspiring. Go well! Thanks again.

Youth Focus team members take a well-deserved bow, 270916

Youth Focus team members take a well-deserved bow, 270916

* Pacific Youth Leadership And Transformation – PYLAT Council
ccc.govt.nz/elections + cdhb.health.nz/elections + ecan.govt.nz/elections

Previous on topic:
riktindall.wordpress.com/christchurch-south-youth-community-resilience-role-ccc-chch-preparedness-nz

Open and independent, balanced and reasoning minds are required for good regional governance.

Heat over bad water is rising generally, around Havelock North’s current crisis. The larger water quantity, population and risk in Canterbury mean that every tool available to resolve the same challenge must be applied here – and this especially includes democracy. ‘Many eyes keep bugs shallower’,  as the open-source software movement says. Let us all be enabled to act to preserve water quality, essentially.

Tuesday saw competing meetings in Lincoln about freshwater recovery: Two meetings, two visions for Canterbury’s freshwater lakes and rivers. The outcome from the blame game is, who can you believe?

Water users will defend their interests, the stronger the greater these are. Political interests step in taking sides, which muddies the water further.

Fish, fowl or four-legs? we may well ask – all are farmed from the natural resource.

So when fishers and fowlers claim the moral high ground, I for one stand unconvinced.

The Environment Minister is correct identifying a, if not the, major contributor to faecal contamination of urban waterways – that city dwellers get blamed for but cannot change!

Fishers and fowlers maintain hunting stock at maximum possible limits. But more city dwellers want the very messy canada geese gone from river banks, boating infrastructure and estuary and cleaner local rivers.

Thus Fish and Game oppose game-bird culls and leave Christchurch with the crap: both green poos and water quality blame. So it does not wash at all for ‘environmentalists’ to side with farmers of the rivers and lakes (Fish and Game base) expediently, to make their case and too-easy-allies.

Park or wild goose habitat? NZ

Park or wild goose habitat? Photo 170914: “Large flocks of canada geese have descended on the Waterstone subdivision in Paraparaumu, fouling the lakes, grassy areas, paths and walkways. Now residents are urging the council to organise a cull.” http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/kapiti/10517793/Calls-to-cull-wandering-geese

Now Fish and Game claim a place at the Environment Canterbury regulatory table for their farming interests too? Who is this helping really? One more example is enough.

The hazard-prone Opuha Dam in South Canterbury enabled much more dairy irrigation there – love it or hate it for its effects.

Fish and Game’s position is to support the dam, to steady the Opuha River flow for their trout. At this point the argument ends and I leave you to decide your own votes and whose interests you really want served in regional decision-making. Pick those with no interest materially different to your own: no conflict. Pick pure values.

Should it come as no surprise that state broadcast media sides with national government choosing winners in this debate? If we can have no trust in Radio New Zealand or The Press to avoid bias, what use are they to the public in greater emergency?

Refs. Chch water contaminated 125 times in four years, RNZ 30 August 2016 +
Swimmable lakes would require a bird cull – Smith +
Don’t blame birds for bad water, minister told 1 September 2016.

Water shot mix - northern South Island NZ

Water-shot mix, northern South Island NZ – “friends setting Canada goose decoys on the Acheron River during the Molesworth Goose hunt” – NZ stock photo: http://www.naturespic.com/newzealand/image.asp?id=45869

Water quality, real story-telling and this election are about one and the same thing: integrity.

For the only former Canterbury councillor running again in 2016 and therefore a referendum on central government’s treatment of Canterbury democracy and water equity, see CommunityVoice.nz

Quoting a certain prime minister for New Zealand journalism’s benefit, “Get some guts!”

Please do Vote

Kia ora

It has been six long, troubled years since Canterbury lost regional democracy. This year it is being allowed back in partial form by central government. We must celebrate and utilise the consultative opportunity this change of course provides. Given the mounting challenges that Canterbury faces, it is at least worth asking, can democracy provide greater solutions? The answer is undoubtedly yes.

The Waimakariri River

Ko Waimakariri te awa, Ka Pakihi Whakatekateka o Waitaha – the Waimakariri River, Canterbury

Government intervention at Environment Canterbury (ECan) in 2010 turned long-standing threat into action.

Post-Muldoon, post-SMP farming subsidy, Labour governments had forged rural recovery on an intensive dairy model, birthing export co-operative giant Fonterra as one pinnacle. Growth upon growth characterised an industry fast becoming the nation’s leader.

In Canterbury the most ‘fertile ground’ for dairy expansion was found, by tapping underground water and applying nitrogenous fertiliser to former dry-lands. But this massive growth spurt had natural limits – aquifers are finite and their increased depletion, combined with more fertiliser and waste run-off, began to degrade surface water. This the public noticed and said so loudly.

Could Labour keep Canterbury dairy growth going, against natural limits and growing public concern? ‘Yes’, said the Labour-led regional council, to Labour government pressure – with new water storage, irrigation schemes and environmental mitigations.

‘Get on with it quicker’ said an incoming National government from 2008, soon throwing the elected council out and replacing them with appointed commissioners.

Tangata whenua, the indigenous ‘people of the land’, rightly wanted more say and democracy was poorly delivering it. Appointments made with iwi / tribal corporate Ngai Tahu could start resolving this also.

The first remedy, in the return to regional democracy, will be ensuring representation belongs equally to tangata whenua. The primary challenge facing ECan, therefore, is how to structure a return to democratic representation that guarantees the appropriate kaitiaki / resource stewardship role of Ngai Tahu.

The next challenge being, is there enough water for all users wanting it? This is a matter of careful sharing, and in good governance.

The Canterbury Water Management Strategy (CWMS) was developed, and in 2009 launched, by an elected council collaborating with the region’s mayors. Commissioners have been rolling the CWMS out and founding its water Zone Implementation Committees and Plans (ZIPs). Keeping these Zone Committees viable is a function of good democracy – people need to believe and participate in ECan’s resource management plan as a whole.

It is hard to believe trouble greater than rising ‘water wars’ could displace these in Canterbury, but one did – devastating earthquakes.

Now we have seen the capacity for communities to collaborate and recover from deadly calamity, how do we optimise this capacity as a region? ECan co-ordinates local emergency responses and we need reminding and preparedness for what is forecast to come: the Alpine Fault poses a major threat every 330 years or so, the last rupture having been in 1717, around magnitude 8. Are we ready for ‘the big one’ here yet?

ECan’s technical capabilities are tested daily – a very large area to cover, containing some 70% of New Zealand’s freshwater and the nation’s second-biggest city, Otautahi Christchurch. Over half a million people live here which generates transport challenges. Without adequate staffing or accountable public representatives, resources can fall through the cracks and when they do it is scandalous: e.g. Environment Canterbury informs police, Serious Fraud Office of potential taxi fraud news today, story on RadioNZ with Checkpoint interview.

This echoes the finding Millions of litres of water illegally taken: Is ECan doing enough? in June – technically competent elected watch-dogs are needed to raise and maintain a higher level of vigilance. ‘Many eyes, shallower bugs’ is the credo of the open-source software movement and both central and local government need to learn from this international community, fast: the power of engaged communities to help solve the most ‘wicked problems’ on Earth.

For improvements to happen quicker in 2016, I have joined the local election campaign Community Voice .nz – Do join us, do speak – for a safer, more collaborative and prosperous region of Waitaha, Canterbury NZ!

Kia ora

Rik

Updates
A Hawke’s Bay water contamination crisis was erupting at the time of this post:

“Both Hawke’s Bay and Canterbury are among the driest and most drought-prone areas in New Zealand and both rely largely on aquifers for drinking water. Both have braided rivers too, although those in Hawke’s Bay are on a smaller scale than Canterbury.
A rush of irrigation over recent decades in Canterbury has led to significant environmental degradation, including serious contamination of some rural water supplies, loss of biodiversity and transformation of landscapes. Democracy has been damaged too, as development pressures led to the Government sacking the elected Environment Canterbury regional councillors and their replacement with appointed commissioners.
The commissioners promised to improve water quality. They have failed and water quality has continued to decline. Some rural water supplies, including Selwyn, Hinds and Hurunui, are contaminated with high levels of nitrogen and pathogens, leading to people becoming sick.
Canterbury now has the unenviable record of having the highest rate of campylobacter infections in the world, along with 17,000 notified cases of gastroenteritis a year and up to 34,000 cases of waterborne illness annually, according to Canterbury District Health Board figures.
Rates of animal sourced disease such as campylobacter are higher in areas of Canterbury with more intensive animal farming. A Canterbury District Health Board commissioned assessment of the proposed Central Plains Water Scheme found potential health risks to Cantabrians outweighed the probable financial benefits to a few people. Hawke’s Bay should not make the same mistakes as Canterbury. It needs development, particularly in agriculture, that is sustainable and protects water quality and the other natural treasures that contribute so much to the region’s quality of life.”
Amelia Geary: We want to be able to swim in our rivers, NZ Herald, 31 August 2016

Canterbury’s poisonous lake: still toxic, with dry summer ahead, Stuff, 2 September 2016
See Plan Change 6 (Wairewa) to the Canterbury Land and Water Regional Plan

See wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_pollution_in_New_Zealand

Spreydon-Heathcote Youth Community Board 260716

‘Spreydon-Heathcote Youth Community Board’ 260716

An opportunity to bring constructive resilience to our local communities and youth has been lost, rudely hijacked. The ‘Spreydon-Heathcote Youth Community Board’ has turned out to be a community fraud, an in-house training exercise for Labour Youth. What a shocking waste.

When I suggested last December to bring representatives from all local school councils in the ward together, it was for a broad and deliberative democratic improvement, not a mirror-replica of Labour-dominated local politics. Diversity, depth and breadth of representation and goals were intended, with a Christchurch South youth community resilience role.

Instead my initiative, for a Spreydon-Heathcote Youth Council – for active engagement between local youth, residents’ groups and Civil Defence etc. – was headed off and greatly limited, by Labour politicians using the already-laden Christchurch Youth Council. The corruption of this process is highly pronounced.

What a disgusting insider-substitute for real inclusive agency around resilience and greater good:

the Spreydon-Heathcote Youth Community Fraud just sails away, a mockery of succession planning.


Graphic source, Wigram MP Megan Woods’ facebook post “The most excellent Spreydon Heathcote Youth Community Board – making sure their bit of Christchurch has a strong youth voice! Keep up the great work!”

When Christchurch City Council Senior Project Manager Lee Sampson opposed his local residents’ association, over an intersection upgrade that most in the area want, he backed the powerful against the weak and breached vital governance lines unacceptably. He should know better than to throw local government weight around like this and allow his neighbours to have their say duly heard.

The Hoon Hay/Cashmere/Worsleys Road intersection is scheduled for upgrade to traffic lights in the council Long Term Plan. But construction and opening of a cycling Adventure Park off Worsleys Road in 2016 concerns Cracroft residents especially that congestion delays increase unmitigated.

The Cracroft, Westmorland, Hoon Hay, Lower Cashmere and Cashmere residents’ associations have all agreed that the lights are needed now, to safely manage the increasing Cashmere Road traffic flow. Council has heard the call and is considering an accelerated upgrade this year. So when council staff start attacking the position of the residents it looks very suspicious indeed.[1]

Is this a determination by council authorities to neutralise the organised voice of the residents? Apparently so. Sampson next wants to claim a community board seat off the residents and campaigns now to that effect.[2]

What does this make the Dalziel-Edwards-run council look like? A rates appropriation of power that refuses local direction, steam-rolling commercial development through and homogenising ‘representation’.

Democracy is much better than this and needs to say so in October. Kia ora.

Southern View 26Apr16 p5

Southern View 26Apr16 p5

[1] Southern View letters, 26 April 2016

Cashmere HoonHay Worsleys Road Intersection upgrade

Cashmere HoonHay Worsleys Road Intersection upgrade

The Hoon Hay/Cashmere/Worsleys Road intersection design in the new District Plan, that most residents want brought forward – before large Adventure Park events cause traffic chaos this summer.

Southern View 120416 p.1

[2] “Health board boss says Princess Margaret Hospital campaign ‘misleading’ residents“ 19Jul16 stuff.co.nz/national/health/82232610/princess-margaret-hospital-closure-making-life-hard-for-elderly-residents

CCC Media Release - Elections 2016 Candidates Information Evening

CCC Elections 2016 – Candidates’ Information Evenings

Democracy needs friends at Christchurch City Council and in local government. Dirty deals to close shop are rife, with council staff put up to prevent the ‘outside’ rate-paying public from ever representing themselves. This is blatant, obscene corruption, that must end.

No wonder revolution is in the air, viz Brexit: when Labour – people’s supposed alternative – is implicated in what is so badly wrong, people despair! Self-anointed “People’s Choice”, Labour technocrats would steal elections and displace rate-payers from their own governance role, from having real choice, as a career option. Labour competes with the public itself! This is electoral crime that voters have power to reject, and to cut self-perpetuating waste within council at the same time: too many councillors and committees shows incompetence.

Already documented is CCC staff member and People’s Choice candidate Lee Sampson’s case – corporate-fascism-at-ccc-sampson-to-resign-christchurch-city-council – where Sampson poses as community member to advance city council planning objectives: stuff.co.nz/national/health/80065995/residents-fight-to-keep-services-at-christchurchs-princess-margaret-hospital. For this imposture, CEO Karleen Edwards should be sacking Sampson, or she endorses underhand Labour hegemony over communities. Dr Edwards, sack Sampson now!

Add to Sampson’s subterfuge those of ECan project managers who – also for People’s Choice – also would seize public representation roles: “In 2016 we have funding from.. Environment Canterbury” – workingwaterstrust.org/who-are-we. With a Zone Committee chair foisted into the democracy breach too at ECan, technocracy, not the rate or tax payer, is to rule under Labour! stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/81225366/three-regional-council-candidates-to-focus-on-change Oh that’s right, there is precedent, when a People’s Choice regional councillor did private consulting for Central Plains Water irrigation company in the 2004-2007 term. Disgusting betrayal of rate-payers and democratic principle, as outright self-service.

That central government endorses what is so wrong with Christchurch City democracy can be seen in this simple fact: in 2010, Key and Co. sacked the Environment Canterbury council for a single 7:7 drawn vote; but when the City Council has one it passes without comment – stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/80893686/catholic-church-told-it-must-pay-150000-development-fee

Will the Mayor’s welfare-assisting capacity continue with Labour power over Christchurch? –
stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/81358306/christchurch-earthquake-fund-closes-after-donating-82m

And will the city’s public assets adequately be protected? –
stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/81468439/sale-delay-for-christchurch-city-councils-maintenance-company-city-care

Go along to the CCC candidates’ information evenings advertised above, to learn how to help and participate in better democracy and better outcomes for Christchurch.

Kia ora

Hints:
stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/comment/columnists/80874905/democracy-doesnt-come-with-optional-extras
hbr.org/2016/03/the-most-important-leadership-competencies-according-to-leaders-around-the-world