Home' Greymouth Star : August 15th 2017 Contents Greymouth Star
2 - Tuesday, August 15, 2017
Heavy rain warning
After a brief respite, more heavy rain
is on the way. The Metser vice said
that in the 18 hours from tomorrow
evening, Westland could expect 120
to 160mm to could fall about the
ranges, and 80 to 100mm near the
coast. In Buller, accumulations could
reach 100 to 120mm.
Fast broadband gains
The number of people who have
connected to ultrafast broadband in
Greymouth has now risen to 33%.
A total of 4337 users are able to
connect in Greymouth. Work is well
under way in Hokitika installing the
fibre optic infrastructure for ultrafast
broadband, with Reefton, Runanga
and Westport next in line.
David McInroe has applied to
the West Coast Regional Council
for consent to mine an area near
Arrivals: Cook Canyon, Ikawai,
Redemption. Departures: Ikawai. In
port: Cook Canyon, Galatea II, Jay
Elaine, Resolution II, Redemption,
Har vester, Corsair. Expected arrivals:
Nil. Expected departures: Jay Elaine,
Retired West Coast mental health nurse
and author Peter Neame says a $100
million mental health package announced
by National yesterday stops short of
setting a quota to reduce suicides.
The West Coast has the highest suicide
rate in the country.
Health Minister Jonathan Coleman said
some of the 17 new initiatives would be
in place early next year, a number of them
aiming to help build resilience in children
as young as three and four.
Mr Neame said it was better than
nothing, but it stopped short of setting a
target to reduce suicide.
“No political party is prepared to set a
quota — say, a 30% reduction in 10 years.”
Dr Coleman said the overall investment
would help put care in New Zealand
“ahead of the cur ve”, and evidence showed
building resilience in children would help
decrease mental illness further down the
New Zealand and other countries were
dealing with an increase in demand for
ser vices, with social media and other
aspects of modern life seemingly putting
pressure on people.
“All governments have to start doing
Broadly, the $100m package would
cover four groups: a school-based
package, primary and community mental
health care, distance and e-therapy, and
initiatives to build an “evidence based
approach” in the New Zealand context.
The latter will include inter views with
“hard-to-find” groups including the
homeless and transient populations.
short of setting
of the Westport News
Just 10 weeks after being told
they could drink from the tap,
Punakaiki residents must boil
their water again.
The Buller District Council put
a ‘boil water’ notice (BWN) on
the local supply on Friday, with
A continuous five-month
BWN for the tourist township
was lifted at the end of May.
infrastructure manager Mike
Duff said the latest BWN would
not be for long and it was not
the fault of the recently replaced
In a press statement yesterday
he said the latest BWN was
due to “much higher turbidity
(sediment levels) than we
normally see” in the raw supply
flowing into the treatment plant.
Last year Punakaiki’s water
supply consumers were on
BWNs for 221 days or 60% of
Mr Duff and his predecessor
Steve Griffin both attributed the
BWNs to increased turbidity of
the raw water supplying the plant
since Cyclone Ita. They said the
plant ’s 30-year-old filter needed
replacing and once that was done
the problem would be over.
Mr Duff said the latest BWN
was not the fault of the new filter
which was finally located and
installed in May.
The filter could handle up to
10ntu (a turbidity measurement)
and was “performing within its
parameters”, he said.
The problem was the very high
levels of turbidity in the raw
water for the plant last week.
“Spikes as high as 50ntu
occurred late last week, which
caused the plant to shut down.”
Mr Duff said it was likely
that slips and loose soil in the
catchment area, washed down by
the heavy rain into the raw water
supply, were to blame.
“ Basically, the raw water quality
during heavy rain events has
deteriorated significantly over
recent times and has become far
worse than we expected.”
Once the turbidity subsided
“the treatment plant will be
restarted to produce drinkable
“ We expect this will be later
this week, weather permitting.”
Mr Duff said the turbidity was
not the only problem; it seemed
the water supply might also have
sprung a leak.
Tuesday August 15
Urgent Cases Only
Phone 768 5942 first
PICTURE: Laura Mills
Joy Aiton on drums as Caron Smith, Lara Priestly and Claire West belly dance.
Belly dance group joins hospital fundraiser
A tribal belly dance group based in
Greymouth has joined the fundraising push
for up to $350,000 to landscape the new
Greymouth Hospital, with a special concert.
Dazana Fusion was founded by Joy Aiton
two years ago when she moved to the
West Coast, after more than 12 years belly
dancing in England and Scotland and then
in New Zealand, she teaches American
Tribal Style and Tribal Fusion Belly dance.
Dazana Fusion has between six and 12
dancers of all ages and abilities, mainly for
“It is amazing to see dancers emerge and
grow in confidence and skill. There have also
been significant improvements for some
ladies in strength and range of motion as a
result of the dance,” Ms Aiton said.
Dazana Fusion has danced in a number of
community events over the past two years
and hosted a mini-festival in Blackball in
2016. Its first show, An Evening of Dance
.. . a nd Stuff, on September 2, is Dazana
Fusions’ first show.
Many dance groups and other community
entertainers from throughout the West
Coast will come together to provide a
This show is in aid of the Kowhai Project,
which is raising funds for the new hospital
gardens and landscaping.
“It is amazing how many groups have
volunteered to participate in this event. It
should be quite a spectacle.”
Joining Dazana Fusion will be Bollywood
dancers from Westport, Filipino dancers
and the Reefton Operatic Society, as well
as some young contemporary dancers and
Zumba. The concert will be held at the
Trinity Church Hall at 7pm on September
Tickets will be on sale at the door.
Sue Aynsley, left, Liz Burke,
Maureen Simpson and Birte
Becker-Steel promote the use of
‘ boomerang bags’ instead of plastic,
at the Greymouth Library. It is
part of a worldwide drive to address
the plastic waste in the oceans and
along shorelines, by instead using
the specially made fabric bags when
shopping. Locally, the project is
driven by volunteers and friends of
the migrant support group, New
Coasters, together with other local
groups and businesses. The reusable
bags are being made from donated
fabric and threads, with sewing
groups busy making the bags. “ The
Greymouth Library is the first place
in Greymouth to have the bags
available,” manager Ms Burke said.
PICTURE: Paul McBride
A vehicle crash north of Whataroa last
weekend has highlighted the struggle to
find volunteers for rural fire brigades.
The crash on the Te Taho straight on
Saturday night involved a 21-year-old
local man, whose vehicle collided with
Whataroa Volunteer Fire Brigade
chief Ian Philps said the brigade was
called to assist as first responder, but as
he was out of the district that night and
the brigade was short on numbers it was
unable to respond at all.
“ What it comes down to it, we had no
drivers,” Mr Philps said.
The Whataroa brigade relies on seven
active volunteers and Mr Philps, from
the local garage, is the only qualified
As it stood, the brigade did not get that
many callouts but it always faced the
scenario of having one or two members
away or unable to respond due to work
commitments, and that was increasingly
complicated by the changing nature of
the work population in the district.
Change in farm employment and
practice meant many farming operations
were no longer able or willing to release
employees for community volunteer
work like the fire brigade, he said.
“Unfortunately, there are some
employers who won’t let their staff go.”
Both neighbouring brigades, at Hari
Hari and Franz Josef Glacier, had also
struggled at times. Franz struggled to
get fire volunteers mainly due to the
more transient population of tourist-
Mr Philps said most of the callouts
these days were wide ranging but
the brigade increasingly acted as first
responder or in support of medical
The police, with only two to three staff
on duty for the whole of South Westland,
also often relied on the brigade to turn
out to an accident scene until they were
able to attend.
The Whataroa brigade had been
working on attracting more members
in the past six months and that had
resulted in a couple of new volunteers
stepping for ward, but then they needed
“ We’re working on it. Every year we
give it a little bit of a push. ”
Mr Philps said being a fire volunteer
did entail a time and travel commitment
because of callouts — particularly as
back-up for the neighbouring brigades,
where a second stage alarm meant the
next closest brigade also got the call for
what might in the end be a false alarm.
Those interested in fire volunteering
are urged to contact Mr Philps or other
brigade members in Whataroa.
The man who crashed into a truck at
Te Taho last week had a lucky escape.
His vehicle became wedged under the
truck and was carried for about 100m.
He walked away without a scratch.
He was later booked for drink-driving
after blowing 770mg.
Whataroa crash highlights
fire volunteers struggle
The families of West Coast
children who need dental surgery
will be targeted for support as part
of a boost to reduce tooth decay.
A recent workshop brought
together stakeholders to discuss
issues and solutions to improve oral
health for children, adolescents
and older people.
The West Coast District Health
Board says some of the initiatives
discussed are still being evaluated
but work is likely to focus on
improving the consistency of
messages given to people through
pregnancy, infancy and childhood
all the way to older age.
More targeted support will be
offered to families who have a
child admitted for oral health
surgery in Greymouth or on
the mobile surgical bus in
DHB West Coast general
manager Philip Wheble said
promotion of healthy nutrition,
consistent use of good oral
hygiene practices and regular
meant were important across the
Work has already started to
provide healthy nutrition support
to early childhood education
centres, as has work to promote the
uptake of ‘water only’ in schools,
promoting that children have
water or milk instead of juice or
Health promotion locally will
build on national campaigns about
the importance of looking after
baby teeth and of accessing free
dental health checks up to age 18.
The workshop was attended by
representatives from two of the
private dental practices on the
Coast, from the community oral
health ser vice, West Coast PHO,
general practices, P lunket, aged
care and Maori health.
For more information about to
access dental care for your child or
teenager, call 0800 TALK TEETH
(0800 825 583).
Child dental surgery targeted
Tissue samples from
mussels up the Coast
Road showed no traces
of 1080 poison, Ospri-
Tb Free says.
The 22,000ha poison
drop of the Paparoa
Range, from Runanga
to Punakaiki, was
completed two weeks
When 1080 was last
dropped in that area in
2007, Community Public
Health fielded concerns
about the health of
the mussel beds, with
worries that people
harvesting them could
This time tissue
samples were taken from
shellfish at the Seventeen
Mile mussel beds located
at the southern end of
the Barrytown Flats and
tested for any sign of
contamination by 1080
Ospri sent the sample
to Landcare Research
and results showed no
traces of 1080, Tb Free
said on Friday afternoon.
“ Testing samples about
24 hours after the toxic
application provides the
greatest likelihood of
detecting the presence of
any residual 1080,” Tb
“After this timeframe,
any 1080 present will
be diluted or dispersed
downstream so it is
unlikely to be present
for any uptake by mussel
Wendy Mitchell, said
they would have liked
the tests to be done later
to give the 1080 time to
be washed downstream
from creeks to the
During the 2007 drop,
extensive water testing
was done at 23 sites.
The poison was
detected in one sample
taken from Hibernia
Creek at 0.2 parts per
of 1080’ in
The young New Zealand
woman who died on her
honeymoon in Vanuatu
had suffered critical
injuries after falling from
Aucklander Joy Ramirez
was on her honeymoon
with husband Matt
Weavers, when the
A Promedical Vanuatu
spokesman said Ms
Ramirez, in her 30s, was
horse riding on an island
off the shore of Espiritu
Santo when she came off
As well as being
a published author,
Ms Ramirez, who
had a bachelor of
in television production
from Auckland University
of Technology, has worked
in events, marketing,
PR and sponsorship
management in Auckland,
Wellington and Australia.
She also has a background
as a singer and songwriter
and was working on
developing a sequel to
her first children’s book,
Toot — The World’s
Tiniest Whale, which was
published in 2015.
A 19-year-old man has
been arrested in relation
to the robbery in the
Waikato settlement of
Waihou, near Te Aroha.
The shop was robbed
last evening by three
who took cigarettes and a
The getaway car was
seen shortly after near
Matamata but did not
stop for police, so road
spikes were used.
The offenders fled on
foot before a police dog
tracked one to a nearby
house. — N ZN
Dairy robbery arrest
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