Home' Greymouth Star : May 14th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
2 - Thursday, May 14, 2015
Snow expected on
Snow is expected on Porters Pass
tomorrow evening. The Metser vice said
cold rain may turn to wet snow for a
time, with possibly 1cm or 2cm from
5pm to 11pm about the summit on
State highway 73.
Motorbike ride to
honour former soldiers
Former soldiers will be honoured
this weekend with a special
motorbike ride through Greymouth.
On Sunday, riders in Greymouth
will join those around New Zealand
for the Ride of Respect, organised
to show respect to military veterans.
National organiser Jackie Adams,
who ser ved in the British Army,
brought the idea of the ride to New
Zealand, and on Sunday it will start
and finish at the Greymouth RSA,
with each rider paying $10 to take
part. All funds raised will be donated
to the Greymouth RSA.
Number plate sold for
What might be New Zealand’s
most sought after number plate —
BUGGER — has been sold for
$34,100 on Trade Me this morning.
The NZ Transport Agency and
Personalised Plates put the auction
up to raise funds for Surf Life Saving
New Zealand. The auction saw a
flurry of bids come in near the end of
the auction, which closed just before
9am. — NZME-New Zealand
Arrivals: Jay Elaine. Departures:
Ocean Odyssey. In port: Jay Elaine,
Latitude, Borda, Brid Voyager,
Christina, Jay Penelope, Lady Sarah,
Sovereign, Tantramar, Tenacity, 28
other vessels. Expected departures:
Jay Elaine, tomorrow. Expected
arrivals: Cook Canyon, Sunday.
Solid Energy silent on head office cuts
the sudden death of
boy Leith Hutchison
more than three weeks
ago have spoken “with
a number of people” to
get to the bottom of the
events that led to his
sergeant Dan Keno, of
Greymouth police, said
in a statement yesterday
that those spoken to
included both of Leith’s
parents. Inquiries were
Results of the post-
carried out on the little
boy after his death in
Hospital were not
expected for several
weeks as some required
testing and analysis had
to be done overseas, Mr
Members of the
public with relevant
information related to
the investigation into
the death were urged
to contact Greymouth
information can also
be provided by calling
Crimestoppers on 0800
Overseas tests as
toddler’s death inquiry
of the Westport News
Solid Energy will not say if any jobs will
go at its Christchurch head office, given the
Stockton mine restructuring will further
slash the size of its business.
Solid Energy announced last week that it
planned to cut 166 worker and contractor
jobs at Stockton and reduce the mine’s
annual coal production from 1.4 million
tonnes to 1 million tonnes.
Asked yesterday if jobs would also go at
head office, communications officer Bryn
Somer ville said the head office workforce
had fallen by about 75% since Solid Energy
began restructuring in 2012.
The percentage loss was more than at
any of the mining operations that had
remained open, Mr Somer ville said.
“Also, if any further change is
contemplated, that is something which
we would first discuss with our own
Solid Energy told Parliament ’s finance
and expenditure select committee recently
that its head office workforce had fallen
from 230 in 2012 to 59 in December last
Over the same period, the number of
Solid Energy employees on the West Coast
fell 55% from 1007 to 453. Hundreds of
contractors’ jobs also disappeared.
Asked today why head office remained in
Christchurch, distant from Solid Energy ’s
mines, Mr Somer ville said Solid Energy
had answered that question before and the
situation had not changed.
“There is more to the business than Buller
and the West Coast.”
Thursday May 14
Urgent Cases Only
Phone 769 9300 first
Grey Medical Centre
Passed away peacefully
on Monday May 11,
2015 at Richard Seddon
Dearly loved husband of
the late Alma, much
loved father and father-
in-law of Eric and Jo
and Micky, loved
brother and brother-in-
law of Shirley (Suffolk,
England), Alan and
Noreen (Tuapeka West),
(Tawa), and the late
Gordon, and a loved
uncle and great-uncle.
Aged 77 years. Mess-
ages to 77 Shakespeare
declined. A celebration
of Pancho's life will
be held in the Anisy
Ceremony Centre, 77
(Friday) at 2pm
followed by cremation.
Resting in the care of
Anisy Funeral Home,
1925 to April 13, 2015.
Frances and family
would like to express
their gratitude to all
those who attended
Robbie's funeral, sent
cards, flowers, provided
food and gave love and
support. Thanks also to
the wonderful staff at
Wairau Hospital and
Ashwood Park Retire-
ment Village. Please
accept this as a personal
all the family.
Storyteller Sharon Holt shows Taylor Dittmer a praying mantis as she tells a story in te reo Maori, at Greymouth
Barnardos this week. Holt, from Hamilton, has been visiting preschools and teaching simple te reo by using stories
about insects, animals and vehicles.
PICTURE: Nicholas McBride
Te reo Maori stories enter tain Barnardos children
Tourism West Coast is interested
in a new project being trialled in
Hawke’s Bay, whereby visitors’
cellphone data will be collected to
Qrious, a specialist big data and
data analytics company, is working
with Hawke’s Bay Tourism to
determine where visitors have
come from by analysing their
Chief executive Ed Hyde said the
first phase would begin in June.
“If that goes successfully we will
roll out with others in the following
months ... The West Coast is
absolutely one of those potential
customers,” Mr Hyde said.
Qrious, which is an offshoot of
Spark, would only use data from
Spark customers and it would
Mr Hyde assured that the data
itself was not being sold but would
be provided as an “anonymised
dataset ” from Spark.
“ We are able to infer a ‘home
suburb’ accurate to 300 to 400m
based on regular daily activity. We
can then compare the activity in
a tourist region relative to where
they are based most of the time.
This allows us to provide visitation
insight without being able to
identify an individual.”
Having that data could help
predict and gauge visitor trends.
“ We see phase one as primarily
accommodation data. Phase two
is ‘what do we believe is going
to happen in the future’ where
we start to predict overnight
accommodation numbers for the
That could guide those in the
tourism sector on how to market,
Mr Hyde said.
Tourism West Coast chief
executive Jim Little said he
had spoken to his Hawke’s Bay
counterparts about the project.
“(I) will certainly be investigating
further as it could become a more
accurate form of measurement and
feedback,” Mr Little said.
Mr Hyde assured that Qrious
complied with Privacy Act law and
acknowledged that some people
may not want their data used even
anonymously. He said they were
not doing targeted marketing and
would look at also giving the ability
to opt out.
Tourism WC may analyse
tourist cellphone data
A report on the West Coast ’s
rich heritage suggests a regional
map and articles to help highlight
the hundreds of historic sites
throughout the region.
The Heritage West Coast strategic
vision will be launched at a regional
heritage forum on May 23.
Included in the 67 pages are
ways to push cultural and heritage
“Cultural-heritage tourism is a
distinct growth area for tourism on
the West Coast,” the report says.
The strategy also looks at how the
new Greymouth-Ross cycle trail
links up a large number of heritage
From Greymouth it passes the
Coal River Park, the historic ‘S’
shaped railway bridge span, and
restored signal box, the two 1955
Cowans Sheldon wharf cranes,
World War Two pill box gun
emplacement, and the 1910 wreck
of the ss Lauderdale at the south
end of Blaketown.
It then crosses 1889 single
lane road-rail Taramakau Bridge
and follows the route of the old
From there it follows the water
races to Kawhaka Pass and then
drops via Milltown to the Arahura
River, a major source of pounamu,
before arriving at one of New
Zealand’s earliest operating power
stations at Kaniere Forks, built in
On entering Hokitika the trail
follows Gibson Quay past the
sites of the former Kortegasts and
Fords breweries, through town and
then the site of New Zealand’s
first licensed aerodrome. The leg to
Ross currently follows the old
In Buller, the Old Ghost Road
trail also offers a rich history.
The report says many important
places and relics have been lost,
damaged, destroyed or transported
off the Coast.
It identifies several broad themes
for the West Coast: Maori and
pounamu; gold and multi-national
immigration; coal, class, capital
and community; and forest
management and the quest for
The forum will be open to the
public, with further information
available at www.heritagewestcoast.
co.nz . Registrations are essential.
A draft addendum to the 2010 Fox
Glacier skydive plane crash that killed
nine people has been released to the
family members, with a final report
possibly available by August.
On September 4, 2010, the Walter
Fletcher F U24 plane crashed in a
fireball shortly after take-off, killing all
on board — four overseas backpackers
and five Skydive NZ staff members.
An interim report into the tragedy by
the Transport Accident Investigation
Commission (TAIC) suggested that the
skydive plane was slightly overloaded
Parts of the burned wreckage,
including the control stick, were buried
in a paddock at the end of the Fox
Glacier airstrip soon after the crash, at
the direction of the TAIC.
Television show 3rd Degree last year
dug up the wreckage, super vised by two
top accident investigators.
On Friday, TAIC chief executive Lois
Hutchinson wrote to families and parties
involved in confirming the addendum.
“I am writing to let you know that the
commission has approved for formal
consultation a draft final addendum (to
Ms Hutchinson said the draft was the
result of further inquiries conducted by
the commission and would be circulated
for consultation to the operating
companies, next of kin of the crew, and
the commission’s equivalent agencies
in the passengers’ home nations, who
had been asked to share it with each
passenger’s next of kin.
“The consultation process is an
opportunity for legally defined ‘interested
persons’ to offer comment, challenge or
clarification,” Ms Hutchinson said.
The draft was to be distributed this
week, giving them a month to respond.
A TAIC spokesman said today the
earliest a report would be released was
An obligation of confidence applies
to any person given access to the draft.
Legal next of kin of the deceased will
be given permission to share it with
immediate family and can seek specific
prior permission from the commission
to share the draft with external expert
Submissions will be considered before
the addendum is publicised.
Ms Hutchinson also commissioned an
independent review of the initial scene
examination and wreckage handling to
identify issues and make any relevant
recommendations, and that would be
released at the same time.
Fox Glacier plane
Heritage tourism growth
area for West Coast
Ospri (Tb Free) says it is
considering more hand-laid 1080
poison around Kumara after a
public meeting in the town on
More than 50 people attended
to hear about the proposed
winter aerial poison drop, from
Goldsborough to Kumara.
Ospri northern South Island
programme manager Matt Hickson
said that after carefully listening to
what members of the public had to
say, it would consider several items
These include the cycleway which
forms part of the West Coast
Wilderness Trail, including the
possibility of buffer zone along
sections of the cycleway and
possible temporary closure.
They are also mulling educating
Kumara School pupils on how
to identify 1080 baits and the
importance of not handling baits.
Finally, the greater use of ground
control was also being considered,
Mr Hickson said.
Once consultation with land
occupiers was completed, Ospri
would communicate the final
operational plans to the community
through the Kumara Environmental
Action group, he said.
This would include information
on how the cycleway would be
“The meeting was very well
attended and we appreciate the
feedback supplied by members
of the Kumara community,” Mr
After the consultation process,
consent for the operation will be
sought from the medical officer
Conser vation and West Coast
More hand-laid 1080 considered
after Kumara meeting
A town square has once again
been identified as the main priority
emerging from the latest round
of public consultation on the
Greymouth central business district
Late last month the Grey District
Council released its draft plans
for a revamped town centre,
including 14 projects that the
public could prioritise at a
temporary pop-up shop in Mackay
McGoldrick said the pop-up
site had seen hundreds of people
through the doors, with almost 200
votes received indicating the top
“People have come in to have a
look and have their say. The majority
of the feedback is very positive,
with most people wanting to see
everything proposed carried out as
soon as possible,” Ms McGoldrick
The current top five projects were
a town square at the junction of
Tainui Street and Mawhera Quay,
a Tainui Street revamp, Mawhera
enhancements and town entrance
The council has decided to extend
the opening hours of the pop-up
shop to allow those who have not
yet made it to visit and vote. To
accommodate people who work
during the week, it will be open on
Wednesday, May 20, from 5pm to
7pm and again on Saturday, May
23, from 10.30am to 1.30pm.
Information on the renewal is also
available on-line at www.greydc.
govt.nz/renewal where people can
vote in the on-line poll.
May 23 will be the last day of
Town square top priority for Greymouth
Leaking automatic transmission fluid
from a car driven south through Rapahoe
late yesterday morning sprayed on to the
hot exhaust system and ignited, setting it
alight in Runanga.
Cobden Volunteer Fire Brigade fire
chief Gary Pollock said the small fire was
out by the time the brigade got to the car,
just off State highway 6 on Carroll Street,
It emerged that the transmission
problem had started near the lookout
just north of Rapahoe, but the tourist
occupants decided to carry on before
they finally came to a halt at Runanga
and called emergency ser vices.
Mr Pollock said while firefighters were
at Runanga, up to four passing motorists
reported a substantial oil leak along
about 200m of State highway 6 north of
Rapahoe and the brigade headed there to
control traffic until police arrived. Grit
was subsequently spread over the oil.
The Cobden brigade was called to
the incident to cover for Runanga,
whose fire appliance was out for routine
maintenance, Mr Pollock said.
transmission f luid
causes car fire
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