Home' Greymouth Star : February 14th 2017 Contents Greymouth Star
Tuesday, February 14, 2017 - 3
Muslim abuse admitted
A woman accused of abusing a group
of Muslim women in Huntly over the
weekend has admitted assault charges.
Megan Sarah Louise Walton, 27, of
no fixed abode, has been remanded on
bail to reappear in Hamilton District
Court tomorrow. The Muslim women,
from Auckland, were at a rest stop at
the time. One of the group, Mehpara
Khan, filmed the exchange, posted the
video on Facebook and reported the
incident to police. — NZ N
Dead rider named
Police have named the young man
who died in an organised off-road trail
ride in Manawatu last week. He was
Samuel Stonnell, 25, of Palmerston
North. The accident happened at
Waituna West, near Feilding, after
1pm on February 5. — NZME
Aust PM to visit
Advancing trade in the Asia-
Pacific region will be a priority
in talks between Prime Minister
Bill English and his Australian
counterpart this week. Australian
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull
will travel to Q ueenstown on Friday
to meet Mr English for the annual
leaders’ meeting. Mr Turnbull will
be accompanied by Treasurer Scott
Morrison and Industries Minister
Arthur Sinodinos, while Finance
Minister Steven Joyce and Economic
Development Minister Simon
Bridges will als o attend. — N ZN
Defamation action fails
Activist Penny Bright ’s defamation
action against Auckland Council
chief executive Stephen Town has
been struck out by the High Court.
The court has entered summary
judgment in favour of Mr Town in
relation to comments in a media
statement in October 2014 about
Ms Bright ’s unpaid rates. Yesterday ’s
decision brings an end to the matter.
However, the battle between the
council and Ms Bright over $34,000
in unpaid penalties and rates is
continuing. — NZ N
New SA visa centres
New Zealanders wanting to travel
to South Africa will be able to apply
for a visa in Auckland as well as in
Wellington. Until now, applicants
have needed to travel to the South
African High Commission in the
capital. From today, two centres run
by VFS Global will be responsible
for all applications. — NZ N
Police arrested a man in Balclutha
about 8.30pm yesterday, after a dog
was stabbed. It received veterinary
help. No further information was
available. — Otago Daily Times
Numbers in Keno draw No 13744:
46, 50, 65, 68, 70, 72, 74, 75. Draw No
13745: 1, 6, 8, 13, 17, 19, 22, 23, 25,
35, 38, 41, 42, 51, 61, 63, 65, 67, 68, 76.
Draw No 13746: 1, 2, 4, 6, 8, 17, 18,
23, 25, 27, 37, 42, 46, 47, 50, 56, 64, 65,
75, 79. Draw No 13747: 1, 8, 12, 16,
23, 24, 30, 32, 33, 36, 40, 44, 47, 52, 54,
64, 65, 70, 71, 73.
Port Hills scrub fires flare
The young man who drowned at
Eastbourne Beach in Lower Hutt on
Sunday was Joshua Caleb Rongomai
Leadbetter, police confirmed today.
The 30-year-old local man was pulled
unconscious from Wellington Harbour
about 3.45pm and died later that day in
Wellington Hospital. Mr Leadbetter was
one of five people who drowned in two
days over Waitangi weekend. — NZ ME
Drowned man named
Parts of Dunedin, including at least 14
houses, were flooded after a short but
intense burst of rain and hail.
An estimated 9.5mm fell in 15 minutes
The downpour also forced an evacuation
at Dunedin City Library for about 45
minutes after water leaked into a light
fitting on the ground floor.
The city council said it received more
than 75 calls because of the rain and the
and the Fire Ser vice attended 45 call-
The council said there was isolated
flooding throughout the city, in particular
on George Street and St Andrew Street.
Because of the short but intense nature
of the rainfall, floodwaters receded
There were reports of lightning strikes
in some parts of the city.
Doolin said the 13.6mm of rain that fell
within an hour was not unusual.
“Thunderstorms can be a lot more than
that. This one was fairly standard for a
thunderstorm. ” — NZN
A home has been destroyed and
several others are threatened by a fire
that flared up on the Port Hills, near
The blaze, centred on Early Valley
Road near Tai Tapu, destroyed one
house and burned through about
Fire ser vice area commander David
Berry said the Early Valley Road
fire flared overnight and crews were
working to ensure it did not reach
Six fire trucks were protecting
property overnight, before helicopters
started arriving from 6am.
Witnesses told RNZ flames could
be seen over a large area.
Water tankers were also being used
to fight the fire and a command unit
was sent to co-ordinate the operation.
Some livestock has been killed in
the Early Valley Road area.
From the fire command centre near
Early Valley Road flames were visible
on the ridge nearby.
Dozens of people were evacuated
from their homes last night. Some
have gone to a welfare centre at Tai
Another fire, at the Summit Road
close to Dyers Pass Road, was
growing in size, but did not appear
to be threatening homes. Early this
afternoon it had burned through
The weather was expected to be
hot again today with temperatures
in Christchurch forecast to reach 24
Roads were closed in Port Hills
due to the fires: Dyers Pass Road
was closed between Hackthorne and
Governors Bay Roads (Lyttelton
Tunnel or Gebbies Pass were
alternative routes); Summit Road was
closed between Gebbies Pass and the
Rapaki Track; Old Tai Tapu Road was
closed between Osterholts Road and
State highway 75; Early Valley Road
and Holmeswood Rise were closed.
Dozens of residents have been
forced to flee their homes with some
sheltering in a welfare centre at Tai
Crosson said six fire engines, five
water tankers and rural tankers, 11
helicopters plus rural staff and the
command unit were being used to
fight the fire.
As well as the house a number of
sheds have been destroyed in the
Early Valley Road fire.
More homes are at risk as
macrocarpa hedges lining properties
on Early Valley Road burst into
“ We did lose one house earlier
last night and a couple of sheds and
at this point we’re just doing scene
protection trying to make sure no
other houses are affected in the fire,’’
Ms Crosson said.
She said the Summit Road fire had
spread overnight, claiming a forestry
“ It is still burning.
“ It has got into a plantation but
no houses have been affected at this
point in time. ’’
Both blazes had lit up the skyline
and could be seen from all over
Ms Crosson said although people
had been evacuated there was no
concern for public safety.
— NZ ME-NZN
$NZ KIWI DOLLAR ($NZ1)
$$$N$NZZ KIKIWIWI DDOLOLLLAARR ($NZ1)
source: interest.co .nz
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source: interest co nz
NEW YORK (US$/OUNCE)
source: interest.co .nz
mark tet move t
As at 4pm February 13, 2017
a2 Milk Company
259 –1 3310
209 +0.5 176.4
ANZ Banking Gr
3160 –3 67.86
136 +1 4.09
Auckland Intl Airpt
694 +2 41.79
421 +0.5 63 .70
671 –1 11 .06
493 +6 53.47
1760 +10 1.82
912 +2 58.13
1034 +4 198.2
Fonterra Share Fund
628 +4 43.39
Goodman Prop Tr
126 +0.5 54.84
292 +4 91.62
Kiwi Property Gr
142.5 +1.5 104.3
272 +0.5 49.98
545 +4 7.08
Metro Perf Glass
154 –1 53.97
111 –3 477.6
Port of Tauranga
444 +9 21.12
Prop For Industry
162.5 +0.5 194.6
Sky Network TV
431 –2 114.4
395 +2 227.3
362 +3.5 665.6
Stride Prop & Inv
Summerset Gr Hldgs
Tegel Gr Holdings
135 +1 10.00
Trade Me Gr
328 +2 22.84
Vista Gr Intl
Vital Hlth Prop Tr
205 +1 15.85
269 +3 21.07
3495 –5 4.00
717 +1 5.63
Trading to 10:30am,
Tuesday, February 14, 2017
DECLINERS: 19 TRADED: 93
Aluminium High Grade
Home burned, livestock killed
Woman killed, three hurt in smash
A woman was killed and three
people were seriously injured in
a head-on crash on the Gibbston
Highway, near the Crown Range
An Australian woman died at
the scene of the 2.30pm crash
after being thrown from one of the
vehicles. The sur vivors were flown
to D unedin Hospital by a rescue
Police have not released the dead
woman’s name or age.
Witnesses said emergency ser vices
staff performed CPR on the woman
for at least 15 minutes before she
was pronounced dead at the scene.
Volunteer firefighters used
cutting equipment to free the other
three occupants from the severely
Invercargill man Mike Grant said
he was driving from Cromwell to
Queenstown when the car he was
following was struck head-on by a
car driving “completely across the
As the rear ends of both cars flew
into the air, he avoided hitting one
— “it was just luck” — by swerving
up a grassy bank on the wrong side
of the road.
“ I’m counting my lucky stars
because I could’ve been in the car in
He and the car he was following
were travelling about 100kph
around a gentle right-hand bend at
the time of the collision, Mr Grant
Trucking contractor Brett McLew,
of Cromwell, said he arrived at
the scene a few minutes after the
accident, and ran over with a fire
extinguisher, crowbar and first-aid
A woman lying on the road was
already being assisted, so he tried to
free a man from one of the cars by
cutting the seatbelt, but could not
open the door.
He then attempted to help a man
and woman out of the other vehicle
by trying to kick out the driver’s side
The crash closed the highway
for two and a half hours, causing
delays for hundreds of motorists
travelling between Cromwell and
the Wakatipu Basin.
Tr a ffi c between Cromwell and
Queenstown was diverted via
the Crown Range Road, through
Wanaka, before one lane of the
highway reopened about 5pm.
The highway was fully open about
A woman sur vived after crashing
off State highway 6 and into Lake
Wakatipu last evening.
A police spokeswoman said
emergency ser vices were alerted
just after 6pm that the woman
had crashed off the highway in the
Devils Staircase area.
A St John spokesman said the
woman suffered moderate injuries
and was taken to Lakes District
Hospital in Q ueens-town.
A Fire Ser vice spokeswoman said
the car had gone down a 20m bank
and had been half-submerged in the
Frankton volunteer firefighters had
helped move the woman from the
scene using a Stokes rescue basket,
A man is dead after his car
appeared to have rolled down a bank
and into a river near Milford Sound,
Police said the crash happened
at 12.10pm yesterday and the
driver died at the scene. A second
occupant was taken to the local
medical centre to be checked.
Police, ambulance and a rescue
helicopter attended the crash on the
Milford side of the Homer Tunnel.
— Otago Daily Times
PICTURE: Otago Daily Times
Ambulance staff and fire volunteers at the scene of yesterday’s fatal two-car crash on the Gibbston Highway.
Fears for wind change in Hawke’s Bay blaze
A wind change could fan flames in
a new direction in a large fire in rural
Only 50% of the blaze was contained
this morning and the main concern for
firefighters is the fire on Waimarama
Road, which is still burning strongly
nearly 24 hours after it started, the
Hastings District Council said.
A civil defence state of emergency is
still in place.
Overnight, 200ha of pine trees were
bulldozed in an attempt to stop the fire
spreading into the trees.
Waimarama Road is open but Craggy
Range Road off Tukituki Road and
Lopez Lane were still closed.
About 20 houses on Craggy Range
Road, near Hastings, were evacuated
yesterday and one house was destroyed.
Earlier, 23 people left their homes on
the Waimarama side of the fire.
Fires on Colin White Road, Ripia
Stream, Te Hauke, and Endsleigh Road
were contained at the moment but are
being monitored. Two generators are on
hand as a back-up to the Waimarama
water supply. Eight helicopters resumed
battling the blaze at daybreak. — NZ N
PICTURE: Hawke’s Bay Today
A helicopter with a monsoon bucket fights a grass and pine forest fire between Waimarama Road and Tukituki Road,
near Havelock North, yesterday.
Green Party not contesting Ohariu
The Green Party will not run a
candidate in the Wellington seat
of Ohariu because of its deal with
Labour to change the Government
Labour this week announced
O’Connor would be its candidate
to challenging incumbent, United
Future leader Peter Dunne.
Green Party co-leader James Shaw
announced today it made “perfect
sense” in an MMP environment for
his party not to contest the seat.
“ Not standing in Ohariu increases
the chances that we will be in a
position to change the government
in September — it ’s as simple as
that,” he said.
Mr Shaw said the decision had no
bearing on any other electorate, and
said the party would still work hard
for party votes in the electorate.
Labour and the Green Party
understanding last year, committing
to work together until the election
to change the Government.
Labour has rejected that it is a
deal between the parties.
Leader Andrew Little said while
it will be “very helpful” to Mr
O’Connor there is no electoral
“There is no deal.
“ They ’ve made a decision not
to stand a candidate in Ohariu.
They’ve made a decision to stand
a candidate in Mount Albert. Go
figure,” he said.
Green list MP Julie Anne Genter
is campaigning against Labour’s
Jacinda Ardern in the Auckland
by-election on February 25.
Labour and the Green Party
have been critical of electoral
accommodation deals involving
National in the past.
National has had an agreement
with Mr Dunne in Ohariu and Act
leader David Seymour in Epsom
that they will only campaign for the
party vote while directing electorate
votes to the minor parties.
“I don’t think they ’ll be criticising
the deals this year,” Prime Minister
Bill English said.
He would not be drawn on
whether National or Mr Dunne
should be concerned about the
threat of Labour without the
Greens in Ohariu.
He said National was focused on
continuing to grow its party vote in
the electorate. — NZ N
‘Mass layoffs’ feared at Warehouse HQ
“ Mass layoffs” are feared to be on
the cards at The Warehouse Group’s
head office, as the retail giant
seeks to streamline its operations,
according to First Union.
The Warehouse Group, which
encompasses The Warehouse, Noel
Leeming, Warehouse Stationery
and Torpedo 7, announced today
to the NZX that it was making a
series of changes to its business
It did not say whether this would
mean job losses.
But First Union retail, finance
and commerce divisional secretary
Maxine Gay said it sounded
like jobs were going to go at the
Warehouse Group’s head office on
Akoranga Drive in Northcote.
“ Union delegates and team
leaders have said to the union that
there will be mass layoffs at the
head office,” she said.
At this stage there was no
indication that there would be any
layoffs at the shops themselves.
“The union itself has not heard
anything formally from the
company,” Ms Gay said.
The Warehouse Group head of
media and PR, Tanya Henderson,
would not confirm job losses and
said the organisation was going
through a consultation process.
“ We’ve put some proposals
for ward and staff are currently
providing feedback before any
structure is announced or anything
like that. So that ’s where the process
Meanwhile, The Warehouse
Group today announced it is
planning to open three new shops
in a new retail centre at Rolleston
south of Christchurch later and
says it will employ an extra 60 staff.
New Warehouse, Warehouse
Stationery and Noel Leeming
stores would be open on Masefield
Drive later in 2017.
The site would be developed
jointly by Eldamos Investments
and Rolleston Retail and have the
three stores in a range of other new
outlets planned for the site, he said.
statement to the
NZX said the changes would
involve “simplification to reduce
complexities, drive efficiencies
and increase business agility, while
removing significant cost ”.
The company would consolidate
its support ser vice functions “to
drive synergy benefits, deliver
efficiencies and reduce complexity
across all Group brands”.
The operating structures and
executive leadership of the
Stationery would also be integrated.
The same would occur for Noel
Leeming and Torpedo 7.
As a result of the changes, The
Warehouse chief executive Simon
Turner stood down from his role.
— NZ ME -New Zealand Herald
Woman escapes kidnap bid
A woman is in hospital with moderate
injuries after jumping out of a moving
car in central Auckland after what
police believe was a sexually motivated
The woman, in her mid-20s, was
walking along Haslett Street in Eden
Terrace about 1.50pm yesterday when a
man grabbed her from behind.
He dragged her into the front passenger
seat of his car and drove off.
A struggle took place and at Copeland
Street the woman broke free, opened the
door and jumped out.
Two members of the public saw the car
leave at speed, travelling back towards
Ian McKinnon Drive.
They went to the aide of the distressed
woman and called police.
Detective senior sergeant Glenn
Baldwin said the the man was described
as a Maori or Pacific islander in his 30s,
of large build and about 1.84m tall.
He had tattoos on both arms and was
wearing a red and white checked shirt
over a grey t-shirt.
His car is a dark silver or grey medium-
sized SUV similar to a RAV 4 or Honda
CRV and it was clean inside.
There could be damage on the left
side, as the door the woman opened to
make her escape hit the wing mirror of
a parked car.
“This is a very clear description which
will mean something to somebody,” Mr
“ We believe this is a sexually motivated
attack and we need public help to find
this man and his car.” — NZN
Farewell Spit remains free from
beached whales with no new
The Department of Conser vation
said the Golden Bay coastline
was clear from Farewell Spit to
“This is good news,” it said this
morning after more than 700
whales stranded in the area over
the weekend and hundreds of
volunteers pitched in to a huge
relief effort to save them.
A pod of 150 or more pilot whales
which had been milling around
off the coast of Pakawau yesterday
afternoon had also swum away and
could not be seen from shore.
“ It’s not known at this time where
the whales are, but DOC staff
and Project Jonah remain ready
to respond if a report comes in of
whales stranding,” the department
Authorities yesterday had moved
whale carcases into the sand dunes
in a part of Farewell Spit not open
to the public where they buried
them with a digger. — N ZN
Surviving whales swim to deeper water
The future of trade between New
Zealand and Mexico will be up for
discussion when Trade Minister Todd
McClay meets with his counterpart in
Mr McClay travels to Mexico to meet
Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo
today in what will be their first formal
contact since the United States
withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific
“Mexico is already our largest trading
partner in Latin America, and there
is huge scope to further advance
our economies, boosting trade and
investment, and working together more
closely in the Asia-Pacific region,” Mr
It is expected the pair will discus
the future of the TPP, bilateral trade
opportunities and greater involvement
within the Pacific alliance.
Mr McClay will also meet with New
Zealand companies in Los Angeles on
his trip. — NZN
Mexican trade talks set
An influx of foreign workers into
Auckland is likely as the building boom
ramps up, Prime Minister Bill English
“ I expect you would see the sort of
influx you saw in Christchurch,” he said
at his post-cabinet press conference
“Some of those have already gone to
Auckland, some have gone home as it
Mr English also expected foreign
companies would be interested in the big
social housing schemes in the pipeline.
“ We’ll see who shows up — that
process is under way right now,” he said.
New Zealand First leader Winston
Peters said it was an appalling situation.
“This underscores what a massive
failure the Christchurch rebuild was in
terms of training New Zealand workers,”
“There are 91,000 young New
Zealanders languishing without jobs,
training or education.” — NZN
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