Home' Greymouth Star : December 30th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
Wednesday, December 30, 2015 - 5
Offers of a yacht to borrow, a tug out to
shore and hot meals were among the gestures
of support offered to the couple whose yacht
home beached in Northland’s Ruakaka.
Retired sailor Geoff Phillips, 77, said he
was “ blown away ” by the people’s generosity
since the news got out he and his wife Aylin
had lost most of their possessions when their
yacht grounded on Saturday morning.
“ It’s just mar vellous. People have taken us
into their homes and fed us, everybody is
trying to help. ”
After several failed attempts to refloat the
yacht, it was likely to be broken up on the
spot and taken to the junkyard.
Mr Phillips said there was no shortage of
offers to help pull the boat back out the sea,
but because of damage to the hull there was
no guarantee it would stay afloat.
“ It breaks our heart, but we have now been
advised we should break her up on the beach.
This will be safer for everybody,” he said. “ The
cost tofloather could be$20kto$40k...
then repairs and a refit.”
Mr Phillips expected the ship would be
broken up within the next couple of days.
“ It was just an idiot moment,” he said of the
moment the yacht ran aground.
Mr Phillips had been trying to help his wife
who was in a dinghy a little closer to shore,
but got stuck in the shallower water.
“She’s a write-off, we’ve got nothing.”
Mr Phillips said the vessel was more than
just a yacht — it was their home with all their
personal belongings inside.
The experienced sailor had set out from
Australia in 2001 with a plan to sail around
the world, but after a tour around New
Zealand he decided to make himself at home.
“ We have been living on the boat for the
past five or six years. It’s been a wonderful
“It was the most comfortable place that we’d
filled with our personal belongings. It was our
baby, our home. ”
The couple had third party insurance and
their contents were not covered, meaning they
would have to start again from scratch.
“She’s going to have to be scrapped,” he
said. “ We now need to find a home and just
chill and reassess and think about where to
But Mr Phillips said despite having lost
virtually everything except for the clothes on
their backs, they were grateful to be alive.
He said the yacht ’s grounding had made
him realise now might be the time to make a
new home on dry ground.
“ With this drama on the water I felt like a
cripple, because of my bad hip,” he said. “So I
have to accept I’m not as young as I once was
and it might be time to set up on land.”
— NZ ME -New Zealand Herald
Offers overwhelm beached yachties
PICTURE: New Zealand Herald
The yacht P Lee Can aground at Ruakaka, in Northland.
Teens on toy swan rescued in harbour
Two teenage girls have been
rescued after the inflatable swan
pool toy they were riding was
blown away from shore in an
The duo were riding on the
white, inflatable toy when
the wind pushed them more
than 1.5km off-shore in the
Manukau Harbour yesterday
A boat and jetski were sent to
return them to dry land.
It was the first of two incidents
Another two people were saved
after their inflatable pool toy
overturned with them inside
in Bayswater Marina in the
Only one was wearing a
Police warned against taking to
sea on toys.
“These are not boats and
should not be used outside of a
small sheltered swimming pool,”
sergeant John Saunders of the
police maritime unit said.
Larger plane will
Air New Zealand is scheduled to introduce
50-seat Bombardier Q300 aircraft from March
to replace its 19-seat Beechcraft planes on its
Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher has engaged in
discussions, as part of a “mini mayoral forum’’,
with Timaru, Mackenzie and Waimate councils
about how each district can benefit from the
introduction of 50-seat planes.
Timaru District Council was partnering with
Air New Zealand in promoting the new ser vice,
but there were also opportunities for Waitaki,
Mackenzie and Waimate councils.
They all had a vested interest in making sure
the ser vice worked, Mr Kircher said.
“The benefit to us is that there’s a whole lot
more seats coming in to Timaru, so how do we
make use of them ourselves? “We’re looking at
the potential of marketing to a lower North
Island market and getting them to come
down.’’ A “key opportunity’’ for the Waitaki and
Mackenzie districts was promoting the Alps 2
Ocean Cycle Trail.
Weekend trips would also be promoted.
“Come to Oamaru or Moeraki, go fishing,
whatever it might be,’’ he said.
The co-ordinated promotion would launch as
the new ser vice did and it would probably be
co-ordinated through one tourism body for all
of the districts, Mr Kircher said.
The councils would be seeking financial
contribution from relevant businesses towards
the promotion of their districts.
“They ’d get some good mileage from it,’’ he
Air New Zealand said its newer, bigger planes
would also have more advanced navigation
equipment than their smaller predecessors.
— Otago Daily Times
Police say a work van belonging to a
missing Dunedin man was moved the
day after his last confirmed sighting, but
would not confirm where it was moved to
Police hold concerns for Stephen
Gourlay, 52, who was last seen in the
Ravensbourne area on December 19,
senior sergeant Ian Temple, of D unedin,
Mr Gourlay ’s Electrix work van was
moved the following day, but it was not
known who moved it, Mr Temple said.
Police were not actively searching for
Mr Gourlay, as he could be anywhere.
There were no leads to determine a search
area, he said.
“ We’ve had various people calling up
with possible sightings and we’re working
through those but none have come to any
Mr Gourlay ’s daughter said in a post on
Reddit on Monday afternoon her father
had missed several family engagements
since his disappearance and the family
was very concerned for his safety.
“It is extraordinarily out of character
for him to have left like this,” the post
said. “He has failed to follow through on
plans with family and friends planned
for a number of dates since the 20th (of
The last confirmed sightings of
Mr Gourlay were at his house in
Ravensbourne, a relative’s house in
Calton Hill and the Electrix work yard in
She described him as Caucasian, about
173cm tall, of a slight build and with a
slightly lazy eye, short grey hair, grey facial
hair and a sleeve tattoo on his forearm.
It was thought Mr Gourlay was on
foot as the work van, his car, bicycle and
motorcycle were all accounted for, she
said. — Otago Daily Times
Tamahou Wanoa was one of the best divers
in his family. But yesterday he drowned after
being caught in a rip while freediving for
kaimoana off the East Cape.
His whanau have been left wondering what
Mr Wanoa, 53, went on a boys’ freediving
trip at their private Puatai Bay beach, south of
Mr Wanoa’s aunt, Iris McGhee, said they
never used diving gear and frequently went to
that spot for kina.
She said her nephew was a good swimmer
and the family had no idea what went wrong.
Police say Mr Wanoa got into difficulties when
he got caught in a rip.
“He got into some kind of trouble and the
boys tried to save him but I’m not sure what
happened,” she said.
“It was an accident. No one really knows
what happened. Everyone is in shock.”
Mrs McGhee said when the group diving
with him realised something was wrong, Mr
Wanoa’s son and grandson dragged him on to
the rocks and tried to revive him. But it was
“At least they were with him.”
Mr Wanoa’s body is being taken to Rotorua
for a post-mortem examination and will then
go to Gisborne where he will be laid to rest,
Mrs McGhee said.
Police said his death had been referred to the
coroner. — N ZM E
Freediver drowns after being caught in rip
Once cut down with an angle grinder, twice
shot, but police will not be putting a L ower Hutt
speed camera out of its misery any time soon.
The camera atop Wainuiomata hill, installed
in 2014, was resurrected earlier this month after
a spate of attacks, including being shot and
dismantled with an angle grinder.
It is the third camera in a short stretch of
road and is proving unpopular with some
In the lead-up to Christmas the camera was
shot again, resulting in damage to its protective
Police are now reviewing CCTV footage,
installed after the earlier attacks, to see who is
Labour’s Hutt South MP Trevor Mallard
believes the camera is just there for revenue
“The bends on the hill are where the accidents
happen,” he told TVNZ.
But police disagree and say the sites of the
cameras are chosen after careful analysis.
“Police officers right around the country get
out of a bed every morning to prevent
families from having to go through the hell
of losing someone on the roads,” the national
manager of road policing, Superintendent Steve
The road where the camera is placed had
168 speed-related crashes in the lead-up to its
installation, including one fatal crash and 53
injury crashes. — N ZN
Speed camera shot up again
Water has been restored to homes
in Hanmer Springs, after the North
Canterbury town’s reser voir ran dry
because it could not meet demand.
The Hurunui District Council said the
town ran dry because the reser voir could
not meet demand after maintenance was
carried out yesterday morning. RNZ
Last night it asked people in the area
to keep their taps turned off overnight to
allow the reser voir to refill.
District mayor Winton Dalley said
water pressure was now back to normal
He told RNZ ’s Summer Report the
intake was turned off for a while to clear
plastic bags and other debris, and there
was more demand during the rest of the
day than there was water coming in.
“ During that cleaning, of course, the
pumps were off and the reser voirs simply
didn’t keep up with the heat of the day,
with the huge demand. Once the debris
was cleared, the pumps were working
and overnight the reser voir was filled.”
An Argentine visitor may be a bit blue
while reflecting on the scenery at Lake
Pukaki after losing his passport and
wallet stuffed with cash at the popular
A good Samaritan found the wallet
containing Tomas Arce’s passport, bank
cards and travel tickets, along with more
than $5000 worth of Argentine pesos
and US dollars floating around the air on
The man turned it into local police.
“ What we think happened is that he’s
left it on the roof of a vehicle at a viewing
point and as the vehicle’s pulled out it ’s
fallen off the roof,” constable Ben Grant
told Fairfax Media.
Zealand in mid-January and the
Argentinian Embassy has been notified.
Tourist loses passport,
$5000 in Lake Pukaki
Specials available South Island only, price valid until Sunday 3 January 2016 or while stocks last. Trade not supplied.
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they scan their Clubcard at the time of purchase.
Fresh Salmon Fillets
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Fanta, Lift or L&P 1.5L
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Potato Chips 150g
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Central Otago Yellow
Flesh Nectarines Loose
Fresh Quality Mark
Beef Rump Steak
Daniel Le Brun 750ml
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or Spaghetti 420g,
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