Home' Greymouth Star : December 23rd 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
4 - Wednesday, December 23, 2015
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uLetters to the editor
1789 - The Guardian, a storeship bringing
supplies to the NSW colony, founders on an
iceberg near the Cape of Good Hope, losing
most of her cargo.
1823 - The poem, A Visit from
St Nicholas, by Clement C Moore
‘ Twas the night before Christmas ...
published anonymously in the Troy
(New York) Sentinel.
1888 - Suffering from depression,
Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh
cuts off his left ear.
1920 - French and British approve convention
fixing boundaries of Syria and Palestine.
1947 - The transistor is invented at the Bell
Telephone Laboratories in New Jersey.
1999 - US President Bill Clinton pardons
Freddie Meeks, a black sailor court-martialled
for mutiny when he and others refused to load
live ammunition after a 1944 explosion on two
transport ships killed more than 300 men.
2000 - Death of comedian Victor Borge in
Greenwich, Connecticut, at age 91.
uWest Coast yesteryear
uToday in history
Richard Arkwright, English inventor
(1732-1792); Joseph Smith, Mormon Church
founder (1805-1844); J Arthur Rank, British
industrialist-filmmaker (1888-1972); Akihito,
emperor of Japan (1933-); Harry
Shearer, US actor-comedian
(1943-); Quentin Bryce, Governor-
General of Australia (1942-); Silvia,
queen of Sweden (1943-); Susan
Lucci, US actress (1946-); Grace
Knight, British born singer (1955-);
Dave Murray, rock musician with
Iron Maiden (1956-); Eddie Vedder, lead
singer of US group Pearl Jam (1964-); Estella
Warren, Canadian model (1978-).
“Christmas is the season when you buy this
year’s gifts with next year’s money.”
“Toyouisborn thisdayin thecityofDavida
Saviour, who is the Messiah, the Lord.”
— (Luke 2:11).
Quick work by a
tiny companion and
equally quick work
by his mother saved
a three-year-old boy from certain death in the
Blaketown lagoon at midday today. Found
floating face downwards was Peter Neville, son
of Mr and Mrs M Neville of Packers Q uay,
Blaketown. He was found by Mrs S J Kilkelly
with whose son Peter had been playing,
close by the crane working on the lagoon
Kevin Kilkelly, about the same age as Peter,
raced home after his playmate had fallen in
the water. Mrs Kilkelly ran to the lagoon and
pulled the boy out but thought he had died.
Mrs Neville, who is a sister at the Greymouth
Hospital, immediately applied artificial
resuscitation and brought the boy back to
Mr Neville said this afternoon the toddler
appeared “to be doing all right” but underlined
the dangers of the lagoon and other bodies of
water. “ We hardly know what happened. One
minute he was at home and the next second he
After his car crashed off the road and into
two trees between Dobson and Wallsend last
night, Mr Benjamin Lewis, of Bright Street,
Cobden, was admitted to the Greymouth
Hospital with abrasions. Mr Lewis, a 62-year-
old miner, was in a satisfactory condition this
After the accident, which happened at
7.30pm, Dobson policeman constable A
Waters took Mr Lewis to hospital. He said
this morning that Mr Lewis was first treated
by Dobson resident medical practitioner Dr
A Singh. Constable Waters said the car was
severely damaged though not beyond repair.
uFood for thought
Printed and published by the
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s Los Angeles grapples
with a huge homelessness
problem, El Nino weather
patterns are likely to bring
torrential downpours in
coming months and add
to the misery of the thousands of people
who sleep on the city’s streets.
“It is a crisis in LA, and I don’t think
people realise the magnitude of it,” said
John Kump, an outreach programme
manager at the charity People Assisting
Los Angeles’ homeless population is
estimated at about 44,000, with many of
them concentrated in a bleak and chaotic
square-mile patch of downtown known as
The others can be seen across the
sprawling metropolis of some 10 million
people, sheltering under highway
overpasses and on vacant lots in ragged
tent encampments, and in cars and
campers lining streets.
The number of makeshift tents and
vehicles used by the homeless has shot up
by 85% in just the last two years to 9535,
according to the Los Angeles Homeless
Services Authority, an independent
agency set up by the city and the county.
Mayor Eric Garcetti proposed in
September spending $100 million to
combat the problem. But he stopped
short of declaring a state of emergency
that would lift barriers to housing people,
or calling on the Governor and Federal
government for funding.
Last month, the city council gave
initial approval to a plan to shelter the
homeless in public buildings and to allow
people living in cars to stay overnight in
designated parking lots.
But many homeless are reluctant to
leave possessions and pets on the streets
in exchange for a short night of shelter.
The health and meager belongings of
the homeless will be even more at risk
when the expected rainstorms begin,
The last two El Ninos, in the winters
of 1982-83 and 1997-98, each walloped
Los Angeles with more than 76cm of
rain — double the amount that the city
normally receives each year — according
to William Patzert, a climatologist at
Nasa’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory near
Gary Blasi, professor of law emeritus at
UCLA, wrote in a Los Angeles Times
article last month that many homeless
people could die if a state of emergency
is not declared that could ensure some
short-term housing solutions.
The homeless desperately need pallets
to raise their tents off the sidewalks, he
wrote, as well as heavy-duty tarpaulins,
toilets, trash collection, and portable
Blasi also called for the repeal of a
ruling that makes it a crime for homeless
people in Los Angeles to refuse to
break down tents on sidewalks during the
Even as American cities grapple with a
chronic shortage of affordable housing,
as well as budget constraints on social
programmes, many municipalities
across the United States have also
been clamping down on homeless
Los Angeles residents pay a higher
percentage of their income in rent than
any other United States city, according to
a UCLA study last year.
For the thousands in Los Angeles who
live in their cars, they may have a roof of
sorts over their heads, but basic needs go
Retired trucker Samuel Cole, 85, has
lived in a camper for the past two years
after his landlord raised the rent by
$100. Vandals broke his generator, so he
no longer has electricity. Like so many
others, he said that a lack of running
water is one of his biggest problems.
“I just have to wash off best I can,” Cole
said. “ Very difficult.”
Homeless in LA
Stacie McDonough, 51, eats lunch by her tent in a homeless RV and tent encampment near LAX airport in Los Angeles, California. McDonough is an army veteran with a
college degree who was recently made homeless.
A cousin of the tiger shark, these sleek
creatures are regularly seen in harbours
and along our coasts over summer. Their
sinuous movements and streamlined forms
rank them among the fastest of sharks.
Also known as the blue whaler or blue
pointer, the blue shark’s upper body is a
striking cobalt blue and the underside is
Their large black eyes have a protective
membrane to shield them from struggling
A young 2m blue shark weighs less than
40kg and despite their slim build, a female
can give birth to up to 135 pups, each
about 50cm long.
Named for their habit of swimming in
schools, the school shark is also known
as grey boy, tope or kapeta. School sharks
are grey on top and white underneath.
They are identified by their long snout,
which is translucent from below.
School sharks live for up to 50 years
but are slow growers and only reach
175cm long. A 90cm school shark is
about five years-old but by 10 years-old is
about 120cm. Females will give birth to
between five and 40 pups but only every
two years and usually in shallow sheltered
School sharks are found throughout
New Zealand’s mainland coastal waters.
In summer, they move inshore, where
they feed on small fish and squid. School
sharks tracked by Niwa covered distances
between 1735 and 4940km. The greatest
distance travelled each day was 23km.
Found around the northern half of the
North Island when they move into shallow
coastal waters to feed on kahawai, mullet,
snapper, kingfish and eagle rays.
Bronze in colour with cream underbellies,
these sharks take about 30 years to reach a
maximum length of three metres but most
are between 1.5m and 2m. Female bronze
whalers will have 16 to 20 pups at a time.
One of the most abundant large shark
species in our coastal waters, the species is
the one most likely to be encountered by
divers. Not normally aggressive to humans,
although spear fishers have been bitten by
them. These sharks eat live or dead fish,
so spear fishers should remove their catch
from the water as soon as possible.
One of the smaller, common species of
shark is the spotted dogfish or rig, which
is served at fish ‘n’ chip shops. Endemic to
New Zealand waters, females grow to a
maximum of 1.5m long and males to 1.2m.
Bronze or grey on top, they have a white
belly and small white spots on their upper
Rig sharks spend the summer in estuaries
and coastal waters and are of little threat
to humans. Their teeth are small grinding
plates, good for eating crabs — their main
Most female rigs reproduce from late
October to early December delivering
about 10 pups, each 10 to 20cm long.
Rigs are good swimmers and travel very
long distances. One tagged rig clocked
up 1159km, going from south of Stewart
Island to Golden Bay.
— New Zealand Herald
A blue shark.
Sharks of the New Zealand summer
Everyone knows they are out there, but how well do you know your sharks? Niwa looks
at four of the most common sharks you are likely to spot this summer.
A school shark.
A spotted dogfish
Some cheap sunnies are just
as good at protecting eyes from
ultraviolet light as their more pricey
Consumer NZ tested 60 sunglasses,
ranging from $2 to $270, and found
48 met the Australia and New
Zealand Standard for Sunglasses and
Twenty-two of those were $20 or
cheaper. Those that met the standard
were also found to be robust and
covered eyes properly.
Consumer NZ chief executive Sue
Chetwin wasn’t surprised.
“If you can find cheaper ones that
look like something the Kardashians
might wear you’re set. These
products provided good eye
protection and met the requirements
for sunglass construction so you
should get reasonable wear out of
However, 12 of the sunglasses
tested did not meet the standard
that is mandatory in Australia but
voluntary in New Zealand.
Half of the failed sunglasses were
bought at discount stores.
Some failures could harm those
A $10 pair of women’s sunglasses
had one lens visibly darker than the
other, which could cause the wearer
to misjudge the distance of moving
objects. A $2 pair of men’s glasses
bought at a discount store also had
one lens darker than the other,
and did not meet UVB protection
A brand of kids’ Dora the Explorer
sunglasses has been taken off the
shelves because they do not do
enough to block the glare of
Nickelodeon Dora the Explorer
SUDO74157, were among
those that failed the Consumer
The distributor, Pegasus Group
said it would remove the product
from shelves and do additional tests.
Director Kieran Harrison said the
sunglasses had been mislabelled.
— New Zealand Herald
Cheap sunnies work just as well
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