Home' Greymouth Star : March 20th 2017 Contents P2
The most read newspaper per capita in New Zealand
Readership of 11,000
Water exports on
MONDAY, MARCH 20, 2017
$1.20 (Home Delivery 90c)
Phone 769 7900
Youngsters put to test
in town triathlon
Two West Coast tickets have each
won a $26,326 share of the second
division winnings in the Lotto draw
on Saturday. Nine tickets from
Auckland to Otago won, including
one sold on-line through My Lotto
and the other over the counter at
Both the Moana and Kumara
volunteer fire brigades had their
time wasted yesterday when
someone called in a permitted fire
at Mitchells just after 10am. Moana
fire chief Kevin Klempel said they
turned back the Kumara brigade
once they found part way through
the call that the reported fire was
actually a permitted scrub fire.
Meanwhile, the Hokitika brigade
was called to a bonfire on the beach
about 8 o’clock last night. Smoke
from the fire almost opposite the
Beachfront Hotel could be seen
drifting across the town centre. It
was extinguished in quick time. The
Greymouth brigade was called out
shortly after midnight to assist
St John and police during a medical
call to a private residence.
Three drink-drivers were caught
in Greymouth over the weekend. A
54-year-old woman blew 705mg,
a 33-year-old man 923mg and
another man 737mg. Sergeant Paul
Watson said it was disappointing
there were still “these elements in
our community putting themselves
and others at risk”.
Cloudy, showers turn to rain
A Southern California brewery
has successfully tested a beer
using treated sewage water. Stone
Brewing, a large craft brewing
operation headquartered in
Escondido, presented its Full Circle
Pale Ale to curious customers at an
event in San Diego. The new ale is
made using recycled, treated sewage
water and is part of San Diego’s
plan, ‘Pure Water San Diego,’ to get
a third of its water from recycled
sources by 2021.And the verdict
for the brew, which some have
dubbed ‘toilet to tap,’ seemed to be
quite positive. San Diego mayor
Kevin Faulconer told the Times
that the brew was ‘fantastic ’ and
added: “ There’s no better way to
highlight the purity of this water. ”
Other patrons said the brew was
“outstanding” and “delicious”. The
recycled water only needed some
salts before brewing. — Daily Mail
An extensive search yesterday
failed to find missing Westport
woman Leanne Ryall, who has
not been seen since leaving her
home on foot on Friday morning.
Her cellphone has since been
Meanwhile, police no longer
hold grave fears for a Spanish
tourist who also went missing
from Westport, and say they now
believe they know where he is.
Ms Ryall, 50, has not contacted
friends and family since walking
off from her Domett Street home.
She is described as five foot three
inches (1.6m) tall, of solid build,
with short, wavy red/brown hair.
It is not known what she was
wearing when she left home.
acting senior sergeant Paul
Watson today asked Westport
residents to check their sheds and
“ When an individual has gone
missing or doesn’t want to be
found, it’s quite an onerous task
checking every square inch,”
Mr Watson said.
He confirmed police had
concerns for her health.
Ms Ryall lived with a partner
and children and worked in
“She has got her phone with her
and it ’s turned off.”
A large number of volunteers,
including police, fire and search
and rescue amassed yesterday
afternoon to search parts of
A local drone operator also
helped in searching nearby bush
areas and tracks.
Mr Watson said Ms Ryall’s
vehicle was still at home. Police
had a couple of confirmed
sightings from people who knew
her and last saw her walking
along Cobden Street towards
Searchers had checked those
areas and found no sign of her.
Police had appealed for further
sightings from people who
definitely knew her.
“ We’ve conducted an extensive
search of the western CBD of
Westport, and to the west of
Westport around North Beach
and through to the speedway,”
Mr Watson said.
“Leanne wasn’t prepared to be
staying away from her home for
any length of time and we do
have concerns for her safety.”
Mr Watson thanked all the
members of the public who had
turned out to search and help.
They were after any additional
information from when she left
home at 9am on Friday.
“ We believe L eanne is still in
the Westport area but we are not
ruling out the possibility that she
may have travelled further afield.”
Anyone with information was
urged to phone Westport police
immediately on 789 7339.
narrowing in on a Spanish tourist
who was also reported missing at
Adrian Vega Leiros, 28, was due
back in Westport 13 days ago,
after setting off on a seven-day
tramp in Punakaiki.
Mr Watson said they now
believed they knew where he was,
in a secluded location at “some
kind of event ”.
“ We don’t hold grave fears. ”
Police were “relatively confident ”
the sightings would be confirmed.
Extra trains tackle backlog
After a six-week lull in West Coast
rail traffic, Kiwi Rail today warned
motorists to watch out for trains with
the reopening of the Midland Line
between Christchurch and Greymouth.
Rail lines have been quiet since a
scrub fire badly damaged bridges and
other infrastructure in the Broken Hill
area of the Canterbury high country, at
Waitangi Weekend. One bridge alone
was so badly damaged that 12 wooden
piles had to be replaced through a deep
A Greymouth Kiwi Rail spokesman
said nine locomotives had been brought
in to shift freight and coal which had
built up during the shutdown.
He said motorists may have become
a little complacent during the line
“ We are urging all motorists to be on
the lookout for trains from today and
to take care when crossing rail lines
around the West Coast.”
The first lot of freight trains headed
off this morning and the Tranz
Alpine passenger ser vice resumes on
Wednesday, two weeks earlier than
The Tranz Alpine brings more
than $15 million to the West Coast
economy annually, but more than
25,000 passengers had their travel plans
cancelled due to the rail closure.
PICTURE: Neville Roberts
A rake of nine locomotives heads through Stillwater yesterday to help move the backlog of freight, including a mountain of coal, with the reopening of the
Midland Line today after a six-week shutdown.
Spring Creek Mine to be f looded
Solid Energy says it is working
through detailed closure plans for the
Spring Creek Mine.
However, it is optimistic of a sale of
the Rocky Creek coal washery, located
When the underground mine is
eventually flooded, it will end 150
years of underground mining on the
West Coast as it is the last working
coalmine in New
permanent closure on February 3.
Chief executive Tony King said on
Friday the company was still working
through detailed closure plans.
For now, the nine remaining staff —
part of a skeleton crew left behind to
keep the pit in ‘care and maintenance’
after the 200-strong workforce was laid
off in 2012 — were still employed.
Solid Energy had been spending
$2 million a year to keep the mine
ventilated since it was mothballed and
production suspended suddenly in
The initial plan was to flood the
pit and its labyrinth of underground
roads, which run from the Seven Mile
Valley above D unollie down towards
The company said in February the
closure process could be accomplished
in three to four months.
Birchfield Coal Mines is set to take
over the Strongman and Liverpool
open-cast mines, while the Stockton
open-cast is being sold to a joint
venture between Bathurst Resources
Unemployed imports boost Coast Winz numbers
The number of unemployed on the
West Coast has jumped again in the past
quarter, and is now back at levels last seen
during the mass mine closures of five
However, it is believed at least some of
those have moved to the West Coast to
take advantage of the cheaper housing.
In Greymouth, the figure has been rising
steadily for almost two years and is now
back at the high levels seen after Spring
Creek and Pike River mines closed, with
726 claiming Jobseeker support. This is
up from 698 in the previous quarter.
In Westport, the number claiming
Jobseeker support is now at 494, up from
The unemployment rate registered
through both offices has been rising
steadily for 21 months.
By December 2013, a total of 726 were
claiming Jobseeker support through
That number gradually and consistently
dropped to 596 in March 2015, but since
then it has been rising and is back up to
West Coast-Tasman MP Damien
O’Connor said the statistics were
He said the Coast should sit around
waiting for one big project which would
employ 100 people. He favoured smaller
initiatives, and helping existing small to
medium-sized businesses to take on an
extra one or two staff members.
“In that way we can create growing
employment,” Mr O’Connor said.
“A lot of very good businesses are
sur viving. With additional assistance they
could take on one or two more. That ’s the
most likely scenario.”
The reality of the unemployment
figure was that, “some of these people
come from outside the region for cheap
Winz figures are for the quarter to
December and therefore do not include
the latest round of redundancies at
Westland Milk Products, in Hokitika.
Search for tourist called off
Links Archive March 18th 2017 March 21st 2017 Navigation Previous Page Next Page