Home' Greymouth Star : March 29th 2017 Contents SINCE 1866
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West Coast netball
leads to rescue
An unwell tramper in the
Moonlight tops area of the Paparoa
Range yesterday afternoon was
helped by the NZCC West Coast
Rescue Helicopter about 4pm. Pilot
Stu Gorrie said the person had
suffered a mild reaction to suspected
exposure to stinging nettle, and was
taken to Grey Base Hospital.
Trees fall across
The Ross and Hokitika fire
brigades were turned back following
a call to Pukekura after a vehicle ran
off the road about 6.30pm yesterday.
Ross Volunteer Fire Brigade station
officer Charlie McBeath said the
vehicle occupant had apparently
hitched a ride after stranding their
vehicle in a ditch. Meanwhile, the
brigade has been called a couple of
times in the past week to deal with
falling trees across State highway 6,
including a particularly large rimu
across the road about 5km north of
Lake Ianthe, and a smaller tree on
the road at Fergusons Bush.
Fine spells, showers in evening
A United Kingdom family
guesthouse owner has been given
21 days to change the name of his
sleepy seaside hotel after calling it
The Viagara Hotel — or be slapped
with a court order. Enforcement
action was brought by the Blackpool
Council after Neil Marshall
changed the name of his expanding
hotel in Blackpool, from the Vidella
Hotel in February. He has joked he
might even change the name to ‘ The
Niagra Hotel: Keeping You Wet All
Night ’. — Mirror
A Worksafe NZ investigation into a fatal
accident at the the Greymouth Motorcycle
Street Races last year has not derailed plans
for the next event at Labour Weekend.
Project leader Roger Devlin said yesterday
the street racing “will proceed” subject
to it gaining the necessary permit from
Motorcycling New Zealand (MCNZ),
but some behind the scenes changes as a
result of the investigation would effectively
improve the event.
Preliminary discussions with MCNZ
indicated there would not be an issue,
despite the ongoing Worksafe investigation,
Mr Devlin said.
“ We’ve got no reason why Motorcycling
New Zealand will not give us a permit,”
Mr Devlin said.
The street race organisers were in the
process of applying for the permit and had
been closely working with their parent body
to cover all the necessary criteria to cover
off issues raised through the inquiry.
“If we get our permit, we’re all go.”
Mr Devlin said the inquiry was being done
at MCNZ level. The local group would take
on board new policy and procedures in
order to be better prepared.
“I think it will be a better event in the way
it will be run professionally.”
Meeting those criteria would not really
affect the underlying cost of running the
street races and the general public would
notice little different.
“It will be more internal, how we monitor
things and how we proceed when something
goes wrong. ”
Mr Devlin said interest at this stage in the
2017 event indicated it would be one of the
The timed quarter mile race at the
Greymouth aerodrome would also be back.
There would be specific improvements for
that with more stringent rider equipment
entry requirements, while better viewing
opportunities for the public were being
“It will make it better for the public to
come and look ... and get a feel of it.”
The motorbike show, until now held
annually, would now be staged triennially,
he said, with efforts under way to make it
a more significant event in the years it was
School celebrates hall makeover
PICTURE: Paul McBride
Greymouth High School principal Andy England, student council chair woman Maggie Johnson and school delegate Dasmond Nair with
early photos of the Coxon Hall, in front of the refurbished hall featuring the new school sign. The design glows in the dark and adds a touch of
difference to the school hall. “ The hall has had a lot of work done to it,” Mr England said. “Back in the 1950s the hall was weatherboard and we
have taken it back to its original state.” Student council delegate Dasmond Nair said that after consultation the final result was positive for the
school and students. “ W hen school looks good you feel like you want to be part of it.”
Worksafe NZ investigation ongoing
An international gathering of up to
150 young people “communing with
nature” has just ended in a remote
area near Punakaiki, accessible only
The ‘Rainbow Gathering’ was held
from the February new moon to the
March new moon at the Bullock
Creek conservation area, about an
hour’s walk from the road end and
well inland from Punakaiki.
Among those attending was the
Spanish tourist who sparked a police
search the week before last after he
was reported ‘missing ’ for 14 days
He showed up on Monday last
week to assure he was okay, before
returning to “a remote bush location”
to resume his activities for the rest of
A Punakaiki resident told the
Greymouth Star yesterday quite a
few people had been camped well
up Bullock Creek for the past month
and most locals had little clue what it
was all about and their presence was
“It’s funny, they just turned up and
we said, ‘wow!’”
Department of Conser vation Buller
manager Bob Dickson confirmed a
core group of about 30 had camped
on reserve land. They packed up in
the last few days.
At the most, DOC obser ved 20-
30 people and those attending had
largely drifted off in the past week.
The gathering peaked with about
150 young people from all over the
Mr Dickson said the organisers
had initially approached DOC about
using stewardship land in the Bullock
Creek block, outside the Paparoa
“They came and spoke to us and
from what I understand it went
A local ranger kept an eye on the
gathering to make sure they met the
necessary etiquette for camping on
public conser vation reserve land.
“They did all the right things with
camp fires and disposable toilets,” Mr
Punakaiki Beach Camp manager
Jed Findlay said the gathering finally
wound up three days ago, with a core
of only about 10 people for the last
couple of weeks.
It had little impact on Punakaiki
given the thousands who ordinarily
passed through each day.
“I heard it was most people at the
full moon, about 150,” Mr Findlay
According to their website, the
Rainbow Gathering started on
February 26; the general public were
not able to pinpoint the location
because the webpage was gated.
According to Wikipedia, Rainbow
Gatherings are temporary loosely
knit communities of people
referred to as a ‘rainbow family’
who congregate annually in remote
forests to enact a shared ideology of
peace, harmony, freedom and respect.
They largely follow counter culture
ideology, characteristic of the hippie
movement from the 1960s.
Up to 150 ‘commune with nature’ in Coast camp
Meningococcal contracted on Coast
A young adult in the Grey district
is recovering after contracting
West Coast medical officer of
health Dr Cheryl Brunton said
people the patient had close
contact with had also been treated
with antibiotics as a precaution.
“The person is doing well,”
Dr Brunton said.
Those at risk had close contact
with the person who contracted
the disease, such as those they lived
with, but there was no wider risk.
“It was a very good result, (it’s) a
generally rose in autumn heading
into winter. The disease is a
bacterial infection that causes
meningitis and septicaemia (blood
The late summer also saw three
cases of Legionellosis, which can
progress to Legionnaires disease.
All related to garden potting mix.
Dr Brunton said at least one
person was hospitalised, which was
normal for such cases.
pneumonia and to prevent catching
it people are advised to wear gloves
when handling soil, compost or
Open bags of composted potting
mix slowly, directing the opening
away from the face, then wash
Greymouth police have good leads on
a man and woman who fled Greymouth
Super Liquor last night with a stolen bottle
of bourbon and some premix drinks.
Prevention manager senior sergeant Brent
Cook said the pair left in a vehicle about
7.30pm, with the store owner in hot pursuit.
Police were following some “very strong
lines of inquiry” today and also had video
from in-store sur veillance cameras.
Meanwhile, police are making inquiries
after the theft of a digital camera from a
high school in Greymouth.
Mr Cook said police were not specifying
which school at this stage. The camera was
taken from a school bag.
copter crash site
Air accident investigators were
today at the scene of the helicopter
crash which claimed the life of
Reefton pilot Noel Edward Wilson
on Monday evening. The Robinson
R22 crashed about 10km north-
north-east of the township. The
Transport Accident Investigation
Commission said today its
investigators were expected to
be in the field this morning. The
wreckage will probably be removed
and taken to Wellington for
Store owner chases thieves
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