Home' Greymouth Star : November 21st 2013 Contents 7
From Civil War to
Maori Wars 150 years on
Drug mayor locked
out of city hall
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THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 21, 2013
Est. 1866 Phone 769 7900
of the New Zealand Herald
A number of motorists had to
take evasive action yesterday when
another driver heading towards
Greymouth on State highway 6,
approached the Cobden Bridge on
the wrong side of the road. A witness
reported the incident to the police
after the purple Ford Laser almost
crashed head-on into other vehicles.
Police could not nd the vehicle but
have details of the registered owner,
who will be questioned about the
e West Coast-Tasman electorate
boundaries will remain unchanged
for the next two general elections,
easing concerns that Brightwater
would be added to the region and
disconnected from Nelson city. e
Representation Commission released
the proposed boundary changes
for public comment this morning.
Forty-three electorates face changes,
but seven --- including West Coast-
Tasman --- were found to be within
their population quota and did not
require change. Earlier, Nelson MP
Nick Smith said he was concerned
that Nelson's population increase
could mean Brightwater would be
added to West Coast-Tasman.
A former Olympic sailor who
got Department of Conservation
approval to build a small
hydro-electric power scheme at
Inchbonnie has now applied for
resource consent from the West
Coast Regional Council. Dave
Mackay has sailed competitively in
470s and Flying Dutchman, and
competed in the 1984 Olympics.
e power scheme will generate
between 900KW and 2MW of
Partial sun and cloudy spells
A glowing lagoon o Puerto Rico's
north-eastern coast has gone almost
completely dark and biologists have
no idea why. e Fajardo Grand
Lagoon in Las Cabezas de San Juan
usually glows when bioluminescent
organisms that live in the water are
disturbed, yet they have not been
visible for at least nine days. Nearby
construction work is thought to
have caused disruption to the area,
but biologists also believe a recent
spate of bad weather could have
caused the glowing lagoon to dull.
Another theory is the chopping
down of mangrove trees in the area,
to let larger boats into the lagoon
and its surrounding water, could also
have played a part. --- Daily Mail
DHB admits unforeseen deaths
A teenager who died after a routine
appendectomy, a baby left with
cerebral damage and a stillborn full
term baby are just three of 10 'serious
and sentinel events' reported today
by the West Coast District Health
Asked if parents could be
comfortable allowing their child to
have surgery at Grey Base Hospital,
chief medical o cer Dr Carol Atmore
said there had been a "whole raft of
improvements" since those events.
e appendectomy death was tragic,
and although lessons had been learned
that was no consolation to the family,
Dr Atmore said.
e increase from four serious events
last year to 10 this year re ected an
improvement in incident reporting,
rather than a deterioration.
Seven of the events are currently
under review by the DHB.
For some, details are scant because
they are under review, or --- in the case
of a rare cervical ectopic pregnancy ---
to protect the privacy of the patient.
Four of the serious events relate to
maternity services on the West Coast.
For the appendectomy case,
recommendations include clear
communication around the location
of de brillators, upskilling nurses and
turning up the volume on the default
alarm for pulse monitors. Emergency
trolleys and equipment are to be
checked to ensure an appropriate
stock of paediatric drugs.
In another case, a baby was found to
have cerebral damage due to reduced
oxygen ow during birth.
Protocols for emergency caesarians
now include the requirement to call
the on duty paediatrician, guidelines
to identify high risk pregnancies, and
infant resuscitation training.
Other incidents, listed in less detail
and some of which are partly under
º Newborn baby later found to
have a brain injury.
º Stillborn full term baby.
º Complication following colon-
º Patient with myocardial infarction
following elective surgery.
º Unplanned homebirth with baby
requiring resuscitation on arrival at
DHB programme director Michael
Frampton said today the board was
being as transparent as it could
in disclosing the problems, while
protecting patient privacy.
Nationally, there was a 21% increase
in serious events. On the Coast it
was 150%, but the board stressed
the small numbers involved in the
Coast and said the increase was due
to an improvement in openness and
"It is tragic for everyone in the
public health system when a patient
is harmed while receiving medical
care. For patients, families and sta
these events have huge impacts, so the
incident reporting and investigating
process that follows any incident is
the key to reducing the likelihood of
it recurring," Dr Atmore said.
Serious incidents at Grey Base
Hospital are also reported to and
monitored by the Health Quality and
Safety Commission, which decides
which events are reported publicly as
part of the annual reporting.
About 3000 people are admitted to
hospital on the West Coast each year.
Pike River Mine families today
pleaded with TV One News to
not air a photo that shows a body
lying on the oor of the mine.
Someone leaked the photograph
to the television station yesterday.
e news channel said last night
it had decided against screening
it out of respect for the families
of the 29 men, but families' lawyer
Colin Smith said the families had
been given until 4pm today to
say whether or not they agreed to
releasing it publicly.
"I'm very concerned for the
family members who don't want
the images released. e timing
was bloody terrible. ey are
dealing with the third anniversary
and this brought all the trauma
back. Some families are in shock
--- it's really disappointing," Mr
Some families saw the disturbing
photograph for the rst time
during the Royal Commission of
Inquiry in Greymouth earlier this
Mr Smith said while some
families had indicated they were
agreeable to releasing the image,
at least one family had strongly
"It is clear that some families
do not want the picture released
and we have always said that each
family will respect the others'
wishes. at being the response
from the families, we will be
making a clear request that the
photo never be released," he said.
" ere are some families who
think that the release of the
image would help the cause in
terms of the recovery, but that is
not an option any more as others
are against it being in the public
He said they were "very, very
disappointed" that the image had
been leaked in the rst place, and
he would be more disappointed
if the media did not respect the
wish of the families.
Mr Smith said he did not believe
the con dential information
leaked to the media had come
from family members, as they
would not have had access to it.
" e lawyers have that
Grey District Mayor Tony
Kokshoorn said that due to the
location of the body in the mine, it
could be narrowed down as to who
was in the image and therefore it
should not be published.
" e media and the public need
to show dignity and respect in
regards to this matter, and no one
should speculate as to who it could
PICTURE: Christine Linnell
Tai Poutini Polytechnic hard-stone car ving student Murray MacGibbon sketches one of his pounamu sculptures, which will be among those on display at the
Left Bank Art Gallery tomorrow. e jade and hard stone car ving course, tutored by Ric Moor and Sheree Warren, will open an exhibition starting at 7pm. It is
the rst event to be held at the Greymouth gallery since it was forced to close last year due to earthquake concerns. is is MacGibbon's rst year car ving stone,
though he had years of experience with bone car ving before that. In a way, pounamu was easier to work with, he said. "It takes dedication to make a big mistake on
this." e exhibition will run until December 20.
Finance Minister Bill English said
families in New Zealand that experienced
tragedies would expect equal treatment
from the Government, not anything less
than the families of the 29 men who died
in the Pike River mining disaster three
Mr English said about $5 million had
so far been paid by ACC to the families,
on the same basis as any other family that
su ers a workplace accident or death, and
that the full support from ACC would
amount to $20 million when paid.
However, an angry families spokesman
Bernie Monk disputed that today, and
challenged Mr English to show him a
Mr English was responding to claims
from Labour leader David Cunli e that
the Government had a moral obligation
to compensate the families and that
the Government was "giving up on the
miners' families" for not having done so.
"Every other family in New Zealand
that experiences a tragedy, which may be
less high-pro le and less politicised, has
a right to expect equal treatment to the
Pike River families," Mr English said.
He said the Government's moral
obligations had been met through
statutory systems put in place to support
e Government has met its
moral obligation to take all the steps
recommended by the royal commission
on the tragedy to ensure that these tragic
events do not occur again, he said.
"But nally the Government has to act
on behalf of all New Zealanders. Every
New Zealander who su ers a tragedy
deserves equal treatment."
Under further questions from Mr
Cunli e, Mr English con rmed
that fund managers at ACC and the
Superannuation Fund were shareholders
of New Zealand Oil and Gas, a large
shareholder of Pike River Coal, and had
voted against paying compensation to the
Pike River families.
" at motion, if carried, would have
seen New Zealand Oil and Gas, a 29%
shareholder in Pike River Coal, pay out
on behalf of the other 71%."
Mr Cunli e said National ignored the
culpability of the mining regulator at the
time, the Department of Labour.
e Cabinet had limited its discussion
to narrow legal precedent instead of
issues of morality, he said.
Mr Monk said today he seriously
doubted the $20m gure, and challenged
Mr English to release a breakdown.
"A lot of families got nothing ... except
from the generosity of New Zealanders,"
he said, referring to the donations which
poured in after the disaster.
Mr Monk said families with children
got nancial help, but others were
" ey're on the bones of their a..e. ey
lost their only breadwinner."
In his case, he was comfortable and
it was not about the money, but the
He suggested the $20m gure quoted by
Mr English could include re-entry costs.
He also noted that ACC's investment
fund was worth $24.6 billion.
e Greymouth Star has asked
ACC and Mr English's o ce for more
Pike compo no different --- Govt
Artwork returns to gallery
State Highway 6
Ph (03) 755 8681
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