Home' Greymouth Star : January 5th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
of the Otago Daily Times
have saved two visiting
teenage girls caught in
a rip off St Clair beach.
Yesterday — less
than a day after that
rescue — surf life-
saver James Rolfe,
21, was at it again,
this time rescuing
an Australian tourist
caught in the same rip.
He and fellow life
guard, James Coombes,
31, was enjoying a
barbecue at the St
Clair Surf Life Saving
Club with other
volunteers when they
noticed the struggling
teens about 7.30pm on
“ We saw them go under and
they took a couple of waves to the
head,’’ Mr Rolfe said.
The pair — who had finished
the beach patrol two hours earlier
— grabbed some rescue boards to
reach the teens, carried out some
“They were screaming for help,
panicking and obviously needed
help,’’ he said.
Mr Coombes said the pair were
very tired, and “I doubt they could
have got back themselves. They
were in the rip trying to swim
back through it and they weren’t
The Wellington girls — aged
13 and 14 — were cold and
had taken on a lot of water,
but fortunately did not require
At 11.30am yesterday Mr Rolfe
was again at the scene of another
successful rescue — this time an
Australian caught in the same rip
and who “panicked in the cold
Mr Coombes said people needed
to have an understanding of surf
conditions and swim between the
flags, or outside of patrolled areas
near other people.
However swimming in a rip
was “definitely not
“ It is a calm spot and people
think it is all right but that is the
worst possible place to go.”
A warm weekend meant it had
been the busiest weekend for
Dunedin beaches since the start
of the life saving season on
PICTURE: Otago Daily Times
St Clair Surf Life Saving Club volunteers, James Coombes, left, and James
Rolfe helped rescue two teenage girls on Saturday. Mr Rolfe also saved an
Australian at the same spot yesterday.
Monday, January 5, 2015 - 5
When animals attack, they do not just appear
in the hit television show — they cost millions
in ACC claims.
New figures show ACC paid $49.1 million in
compensation for more than 107,000 animal-
related incidents in the past two years.
Man’s best friend was responsible for a third of
the claims — 36,158 at a cost of $13.1m.
Dog-related injuries were not limited to bites
and attacks, but also accidental injuries in which
a dog was involved.
“The vast majority of animal-related injury
claims are minor and accidental, as opposed to
a patched gang of marauding French poodles
looking to deliberately cause mischief and
ACC spokeswoman Stephanie
New Zealand’s most popular pet, the cat, was
implicated in one in 10 claims, amounting to
$2.1m in payouts.
New Zealanders’ love for the water also took
its toll — 24 people were hurt by seals, 42 by
eels, 44 by sharks, 94 by stingrays and 402 by fish.
Fish injuries included a cut finger from a dogfish
spine and a fish bite to the ankle.
Birds, including parrots and the territorial
magpie, left 42 needing medical treatment, and
monkeys hurt 54 people.
Among the smallest critters to inflict pain
were mice — they hurt 190 at a cost of $22,589,
including one person whose reward for saving a
mouse from a cat was a chomp to the thumb.
Gnasher also connected with finger for another
person as they removed a mouse from a trap,
according to accident descriptions. Fifty people
were injured by guinea pigs, at a cost of $5484.
Those on farms also risk injury from stock.
Sheep and cattle were implicated in almost
15,000 ACC claims, costing $6.1m and $9.3m
Horses were blamed for another 15,000
injuries, costing $15.2m, and almost 600 people
were hurt by pigs at a cost of $313,348, including
one person who told ACC they injured their
back while lifting a heavy pig.
An escaping pig headbutted another.
Melville cautioned against blaming cattle,
sheep and horses for hurting more Kiwis than
other animals. There were simply more of them
than other animals, she said.
“The number of (those injuries) is proportional,
and not because these animals present a greater
danger.” More than 28,000 claims were made by
New Zealanders hurt by insects, costing $2.08m.
— N ZM E-New Zealand Herald
holidaymakers sweltering on the last
day of the summer break for many, with
ice-cream melting highs in the mid-30s
in Canterbury yesterday.
Metser vice duty forecaster Chelsea
Glue said summer was “definitely here”
as most of the country basked in the heat
The hottest recorded temperature was
at Lake Pukaki, where temperatures
soared as high as 35.2degC.
A spokeswoman for the Twizel Holiday
Park, 23km away from Lake Pukaki,
said the heat had left holidaymakers
searching for shade.
She said most people had spent the day
at Lake Pukaki boating, swimming and
enjoying other water sports.
“ It’s hot, people have been looking for
shade ... it has definitely been the hottest
day so far,” she said yesterday evening.
Most of Canterbury experienced
sizzling weather yesterday, with Hanmer
Springs reaching a high of 34.2degC
and Ashburton topping out at
“ We have a ridge of high pressure over
top of us at the moment bringing classic
summer weather . . . lots of clear skies
and light winds,” Ms Glue said.
“ It was definitely the hottest day of
the summer for Canterbury so far, but it
has been very nice for most places.
“Summer is definitely here.”
Weather was varied for those spending
times at other holiday hot-spots
In Whitianga, on the Coromandel
22degC, although there was some cloud
and showers. In Russell, in the Bay of
Islands, temperatures reached a high of
In Auckland, people flocked to beaches
to enjoy the clear skies and a high of
As many people return to work today,
a front would move on to the lower
South Island, bringing with it cooler
temperatures and some rain, Ms Glue
“This means the temperatures won’t
be quite so hot, and it will bring a bit
of rain and a bit of cloud to the South
It would be fine for most in the North
Island today, apart from some areas of
cloud and a few afternoon showers for
those in the north.
“ Looking to the week ahead the
(front) will move over the North Island,
weakening as it goes, so it will bring
increased clouds and a few showers and
then it will gradually move off.”
The front would then be replaced with
another ridge of high pressure, Ms Glue
When animals bite back proves costly for ACC
Busy times for St Clair lifeguards
The search for three climbers feared
dead on Aoraki-Mount Cook has been
called off after six days.
Air and ground searches for Sydney
man Dr Mike Bishop, 53, and Germans
Johann Viellehner, 58, and his son
Raphael, 27, have found no sign of
Yesterday, police decided to suspend
the search until such a time that
“new information or sightings be
“The families of the men have been
informed of the news,” incident
controller senior constable Brent
“They are obviously upset but are
aware of the circumstances leading to
Police are still keen for climbers and
pilots in the area to keep a look out for
anything of interest.
“The search team are obviously
disappointed with the result and our
thoughts are with the families in
Australia and Germany,” Mr Swanson
It is not yet known if any families
members are intending to travel to New
The families have also been warned
that the bodies may never be found.
There are around 60 bodies of dead
climbers that have never been recovered
from Aoraki-Mount Cook National
The death toll for the national park
now stands at 238.
On Christmas Day, Dr Bishop, a
father of two, decided to attempt the
summit that had eluded him twice
It is understood he met the German
pair at the Plateau Hut.
After hearing that the climbers had
been reported missing, the Bishop
family hoped they had been sheltering
from bad weather.
Dr Bishop’s eldest son, Joshua said
on Thursday : “Everyone is still having
faith and hoping for a good outcome .
. . but we’re just coming to terms with
the fact there’s been a tragedy and
probably all three of them have lost
Dr Bishop, who started climbing
as a medical student about 30 years
ago, had not planned to climb with
the Viellehners but after they met,
they decided to attempt the summit
Joshua Bishop, 27, said his father
“ wasn’t a Mount Everest, alpha climber”
but a highly experienced climber who
loved the thrill of reaching a summit.
“He would get to the top of a
mountain and be cheering and really
excited. He found it quite euphoric. It
wasn’t a junkie rush -- he just loved
being up there and close to his God.”
The Bishop family said they would
want to return his father’s body to
Australia. -- N ZM E
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