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Dobson fire history
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SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 14, 2015
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WEST COAST FEATURE
Ghosts of Ten Mile mining
spends hours on
The Greymouth Coastguard spent
several hours searching around
Punakaiki yesterday after what may
have been a hoax call. About 1pm a
111 phonecall was made but before
any details could be given, the
caller either hung up or lost signal.
The call was triangulated to work
out where it had been made from,
and an IRB sent to search around
Punakaiki. Despite looking for a
few hours, they found nothing. It is
unclear if the call was genuine, or a
Friday the 13th hoax. Spokesman
Doug Griffin said in addition, the
main rescue boat, the Ivan Talley,
suffered a major mechanical failure.
A technician was expected to look
at it tomorrow.
The West Coast Conser vation
Board has backed a review of the
whitebait regulations. Former
Conser vation Minister Nick Smith
requested the review just before the
general election after an approach
from the West Coast Whitebaiters’
Association. The board wants the
review to be “urgently considered,
with full consultation with iwi”.
DOC responds to
The Department of Conser vation
is about to start its response on
the Westpower application for a
concession to develop a hydro power
scheme in the upper Waitaha River,
south of Ross. DOC manager Judi
Brennan said staff would begin
their report next week. “ There’s a
lot of interest from the whitewater
Some cloud isolated showers later
Greymouth Star On-line
With Valentine’s Day tomorrow,
people up and down England
are rushing to get their flower
orders in. But this year it seems
romantics are taking a break from a
traditional bouquet of red flowers.
In fact, a flower delivery company
has revealed that they are being
swamped with orders from love-
struck customers — for bunches of
Fare share for Greymouth foodies
Greymouth Summer Street Fare co-ordinator Rae Eder, left, music co-ordinator Gary Hopkinson and Greymouth Rotary president and Lend a Hand trustee
Christine Robertson above lower Tainui Street, which will be transformed tomorrow with a food ‘fare’. Tables will be laid down the middle of the street, with food
stalls around the outside. “People can buy what they want then go and sit down with their friends and family,” Ms Eder said. Twelve food stalls and six craft stalls
will run from 4pm to 8pm.
PICTURE: Nicholas McBride
After 29 years of letting the
rain in, Reefton Area School’s
leaky gymnasium will undergo a
$1.5 million refurbishment to make it
Principal Wayne Wright said work
officially began last month as the
building site was fenced off.
“ We are very pleased to see the
project going ahead and we look
for ward to development of the site for
the school,” Mr Wright said.
Issues started with the gymnasium
not long after it was built in 1986.
Past attempts to remedy the leaks had
“ Essentially the design process at the
start was flawed,” he said.
The Ministry of Education had
now undertaken to get the issue
finally resolved, with a redesign and
“completely new profile” of the roof.
“Essentially, the function of the gym
will remain the same. Basically it is
giving us a better building that doesn’t
The 21-week project had been
approved through the Ministry
of Education’s weather tightness
“ We are hopeful to be back in the
gym at the start of term three,” Mr
The school had contributed some
of its future capital work funds to the
While the gym was out of action the
school hall would be used for some
The school pool had to be emptied
because of its proximity to the gym
work, which meant no swimming in
the first term.
“ We will make up for that in term
four,” Mr Wright said.
Ministry of Education head of the
education infrastructure ser vice Kim
Shannon said the gym was being fully
refurbished and modernised and the
roof entirely replaced.
The existing changing rooms would
also be upgraded.
Ms Shannon said the project had a
budget of about $1.5 million.
“This will extend the life of the
building considerably and provide
students with a much better physical
$1.5m to f ix 29-year leak in Reefton school roof
The biggest health and safety
reforms in 20 years are set to take
effect later this year, with tougher
penalties and responsibilities that
go all the way to the board table.
In 2012, the Ministry of
Employment (MPI) was notified
of 65 serious harm incidents on
the West Coast. Apart from a
spike to 80, when the figures
included the Pike River Mine
disaster, the numbers have been
A huge focus has been turned
on health and safety since the
mine disaster, when responsibility
was largely left to the Pike River
Coal Company and a board that
thought everything was under
The new legislation will
put more onus and legal
requirements on managers and
company directors to keep their
workers safe. It will also require
greater worker participation, and
bring in much stronger penalties
The West Coast District
Health Board has been briefed
by a member of its legal team,
and the Grey district councillors
have been alerted to the serious
implications by council chief
executive Paul Pretorius.
engagement Bryce Fleury said
the Health and Safety Reform
Bill was still before the transport
and industrial relations select
committee and was unlikely to
come into effect until the second
half of 2015.
With the creation of Worksafe,
and the introduction of the
draft legislation, there was a
recognition that what went
before simply did not work well
enough, Mr Fleury said.
Once enacted it will mean that
no one can ‘contract out ’ their
responsibility to keep workers
Everyone — directors, board
members and partners — must
‘contract in’ to ensure that health
and safety is a core part of their
Penalties include up to five
years’ prison and a fine of up to
The newly created concept of
a PCBU (person conducting a
business or undertaking) puts the
business at the heart of keeping
workers safe. For example, it
must ensure that its workplace,
fixtures, fittings or plant do not
put anyone’s health and safety at
“This may mean different
things for different companies,
so if there is a legitimate safety
risk to truck drivers not wearing
sunglasses, it might be reasonable
to ask all drivers to wear them.”
On average, 75 people a year
die on the job, 1 in 10 is harmed
and 600 to 900 die from work-
The aim is to bring down New
Zealand’s workplace injury and
death toll by 25% by 2020.
Nicholas McBride and
The New Zealand Transport Agency
will put up warning signs at Kaiata after
a local man erected his own signs to
highlight the dangers to cyclists.
Kaiata resident Richard Yardley said
he attached his sign three weeks ago to
an existing road sign on the side of State
highway 7, between the Kaiata School
and Omoto Valley Road junction. Soon
after the sign which proclaimed ‘caution,
cyclists and pedestrians, thanks’ was
gone. Mr Yardley said the speed of traffic
through Kaiata, combined with poor
visability along the road, was a fatality
waiting to happen.
“There’s cyclists, there’s pedestrians who
use that road and somebody is going to
get hurt ... something needs to be done.”
The speed of traffic through the village
was “ bloody crazy ”. He believed other
residents shared his concerns, particularly
the risk to cyclists from heavy vehicles
such as milk tankers.
Neither the Grey District Council nor
NZTA has taken responsibility for the
removal of his home-made sign.
However, NZTA regional performance
manager Peter Connors said people
should not attach their own signs.
“The use of non-standard signs can
... (create) a hazard within the roadside
zone, possibly limiting sight lines or
creating a distraction for road users.”.
However, Mr Connors said NZTA also
acknowledged Mr Yardley ’s concerns.
“As a result of this safety issue being
raised and because of the increasing
volume of traffic and the number of
cyclists travelling through the area, the
transport agency will soon be erecting
cyclist warning signs at Kaiata. ”
Moana is one step closer to a new
health clinic, with a site agreed upon
with the Grey District Council.
The council this week agreed to a
peppercorn lease of a section of Helena
Dense Park for the new clinic.
Mayor Tony Kokshoorn put on his
hat as chairman for the Lake Brunner
District Health Clinic joint committee
chairman and declared an interest in the
Crs Allan Gibson, Kevin Brown and
Anton Becker also declared an interest.
Standing orders were suspended simply
to allow Mr Kokshoorn to speak.
He said the resort was growing and
they hoped to make a hub, with the fire
station next door to the proposed clinic.
“The feeling is that is the ideal spot for
In a letter to the council, he said the
current facility ser viced 2000 people.
“The old clinic is outdated for the
needs of modern practices and needs to
be located in a more central location.”
Cr Cliff Sandrey worried that building
the clinic might put more pressure on
the DHB and take away from Grey Base
However, Mr Kokshoorn assured that
the DHB was “all for it ” but simply did
not have surplus funds to build it.
Cr Kevin Brown said: “Nothing is
going to change, just the building.”
The DHB would own the building
but it would be built by the community
through fundraising, he said.
A peppercorn rental was agreed.
Council leases park for new Moana health centre
Kaiata highway cycle warning signs after local protests
mixed shake 20s
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