Home' Greymouth Star : June 23rd 2014 Contents Greymouth Star
West Coast/New Zealand
2 - Monday, June 23, 2014
Man spied pulling car
door handles evades
A man wearing a black leather
jacket who was spied pulling on
the door handles of vehicles parked
on Brunner Street, Greymouth on
Friday evaded police. The man was
spotted just before noon and had fled
the scene by the time police arrived.
Stolen car found in
A car stolen from a Greenstone
Road, Kumara address on Friday
night was found crashed into a
ditch halfway between Kumara and
Kumara Junction on Saturday. The
vehicle, a silver Holden Berlina
saloon, was found by the owner.
Police are keen to hear from anyone
who may have witnessed the crash.
Arrivals: Galatea II. Departures:
Resolution II. In port: Galatea II,
Electra, 25 other vessels. Expected
departures: Galatea II today.
Expected arrivals: Cook Canyon,
Resolution, today; Ocean Odyssey
tomorrow; Moon Shadow, Jay
In the aftermath of the devastating
February 2011 Canterbury earthquakes,
remarkable feats of bravery emerged.
Today, 27 people will be honoured
with New Zealand Bravery awards for
their role in the rescue efforts, carried
out amid the shock and confusion of the
first 24 hours following the magnitude
Five police officers, 18 firefighters, two
doctors, a navy lieutenant commander
and a local businessman have all been
recognised for their extraordinary feats
Dr Bryce Curran and Dr Lydia
Johns-Putra have been awarded New
Zealand Bravery Decorations for an
act of exceptional bravery in a situation
of danger, for carrying out a double leg
amputation on a man trapped inside
the Pyne Gould Corporation (PGC)
All the other recipients receive a New
Zealand Bravery Medal.
The vast majority are firefighters, with
Paul Baxter, chief executive and national
commander of the Fire Ser vice, saying
he will “always be proud of the bravery
demonstrated” by fire crews during the
“ It’s clear from their citations that if
they hadn’t taken those risks, more lives
would almost certainly have been lost.
The individual stories of bravery being
recognised today are simply outstanding.”
A posthumous honour was awarded to
station officer Alan Butcher for his work
in charge of the first firefighters to arrive
at the Canterbury Television (CTV )
building, helping free sur vivors and
organising rescue efforts.
His widow Robyn will receive the
medal on his behalf.
Today ’s bravery awards could only
be issued once all relevant court
proceedings, coroners inquests and other
inquiries related to the Christchurch
earthquakes were completed.
The recipients will be presented their
awards by the Governor General at an
investiture ceremony, however a date
for that ceremony has not yet been
The firefighters who freed seven
sur vivors from the pancaked Canterbury
Television (CTV) building were part
of what station officer Paul Rodwell
calls “one of the best stories” of the
Mr Rodwell led senior firefighters
Mark Whittaker, Kevin Crozier, Richard
Green, Terry Gyde and firefighter Luke
Burgess to a group of students trapped,
alive, on the fourth floor.
The floor had compressed to just 60cm
“The CTV for me had the saddest story
of the earthquake of course, and it also
had one of the best stories as well. Where
I was working was the most sur vivors
extricated from a deep entrapment, with
seven sur vivors, which is a miracle itself
with the way that building looked,” Mr
Since the event he had been in contact
with a lot of the families of sur vivors and
families of the deceased.
He found out that the first girl they
got out to safety had later had to have
her leg amputated due to complications.
Another student was trapped by his
head, but the team managed to pull him
A third student was trapped by
something crushing her leg and despite
the language barrier, Mr Rodwell said
she was aware of the discussions he was
having with a doctor about their options
“S he grabs me by my t-shirt and looks
me right in the eyes and says ‘I trust
you’, ” he said.
She was anaesthetised and her lower
leg was amputated so she could be freed.
He said firefighters were not used to
accepting awards for their work.
“Some of us think the brave thing
to do is become a firefighter, and
everything after that is just part of the
job. Not one of us would feel any braver
or more important than the other
firefighters we work with.” The team of
six firefighters were awarded the New
Zealand Bravery Medal for their act of
bravery. — APNZ
Monday June 23
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On June 18, 2014, at
Allen Bryant Lifecare,
Hokitika. In his 80th
year. A loved brother to
all his late brothers and
sisters, and a loved
uncle. Messages to 7/87
Sewell Street, Hokitika
7810. Following Rob's
wishes, a private family
service followed by
Cemetery was held on
Phone (03) 755 7993.
The first official signs of the looming
election are on their way to 45,874
letterboxes across the West Coast and
Enrolment update packs for the West
Coast-Tasman Electorate were sorted and
sent out this morning.
This will be one of the biggest mailouts
of 2014 nationwide, with over three
million enrolled voters being sent packs.
With just three months to go until
election day, the Electoral Commission
wants to ensure that people do not
miss out on the chance to vote. The
2014 general election will be held on
“This is your opportunity to check that
your details are correct and up to date,
or to make any changes. We ask that
everyone open their pack to ensure their
details are correct, and if not, to fill in
the form and send it back,” Enrolment
Services national manager Murray Wicks
“ We can’t say it strongly enough — the
only way to vote in this year’s general
election is to be enrolled, so get ready for
People who do not receive their
enrolment update pack by June 27 will
need to complete a new enrolment form.
People can enrol or update their details
on-line at www.elections.org.nz .
Paul Weavers and 20-month-old daughter Nellie were among the crowd checking out the bargains on
offer at the Greymouth Parents’ Centre Baby and Child Extravaganza, at the Civic Centre on Saturday.
The next extravaganza will be held in November.
PICTURE: Nicholas McBride
Checking for bargains at Baby and Child Extravaganza
The business case outlining the
redevelopment of Grey Base Hospital
has still not been released, six weeks
after it was signed off.
On May 8, Health Minister Tony
Ryall said in a statement the business
case for the new 60-bed hospital facility
had been signed off and the project was
now in the final design phase.
Cabinet had approved the $67 million
‘greenfield’ development plan, he said.
The following day the Greymouth Star
asked under the Official Information
Act to see the briefing papers and
correspondence which went before
Cabinet, as it made the decision and
agreed on the amount of the loan
approved to the West Coast District
Health Board. The Government asked
for an extension to the standard 20-day
response period, which ended on Friday.
The documents had not been received by
On May 22, the newspaper asked for
the business case, which by then had
been signed off at least two weeks.
National Health Board acting director
of DHB performance John Hazeldine
recently wrote to say that deadline was
also been extended, in this case to July
He said the Ministry of Health
“requires further time to consult on the
response to your request ”.
The Greymouth Star made the
requests in a bid to understand what
the new hospital will look like, its size,
its position, and what ser vices will be
Labour Party health spokeswoman
Annette King, a former minister of
health, has also put in a request for the
new plans, but has not yet received them.
“ It ’s most unacceptable that Coasters
don’t know the detail of the rebuild,”
Mrs King said.
West Coast-Tasman MP Damien
O’Connor said he and Mrs King were
still planning a public meeting in
Greymouth about the new hospital.
Grey Base Hospital business case still not released
A new Government scheme with
an extra funding boost could tempt
Greymouth schools to sell their surplus
Associate Education Minister Nikki
Kaye announced last week that from
July 1, schools would be offered 100%
of the net proceeds from the sale of
surplus school housing, instead of the
Nationwide, there are 1900 school
houses on Ministry of Education
administered land with a total value
of over $300 million. Greymouth has
seven of those for disposal, all of which
are currently tenanted.
Paroa School has one house, which
sits on the school site. Principal Mary
Pupich said owning the house meant
they had to find a tenant, and teachers
used the school houses less nowadays.
“They don’t seem to be used as often
as they used to be.”
Mrs Pupich said the changes might
make selling the house an option.
“It would make us consider it
more seriously as it does present a
considerable added benefit.”
Paparoa Range School has three
houses, two of which have teachers in
The change would enable schools to
reduce long-term vacancies, and sell
houses that were no longer required for
education purposes, Ms Kay said.
“They will be able to use this extra
money to modernise their classrooms
and ensure students have the best
possible learning environments,” Ms
“The extra revenue will be added to the
lump sum given to each school every
five years to maintain and modernise
school property and infrastructure,
and to bring classrooms up to modern
learning environment standards.”
New Government scheme could tempt schools to sell surplus houses
by Janna Sherman
of the Hokitika Guardian
The Department of Conser vation
plans to build a new viewing platform
to improve visitor safety at the Hokitika
The $88,000 upgrade will discourage
access to the rocky bluff, where the
current track ends. The track to the
new lookout will also be improved and
DOC Hokitika area manager Ian
McClure said visitor safety was the
main reason behind the work, which
should start in August.
“It means we will no longer be guiding
people on to the rocks,” Mr McClure
said. “It is hoped to provide a safer
experience for visitors and a better
viewpoint on the other side of the river.”
Project leader Paul Davidson said the
second platform would allow visitors
to see further up the gorge. An access
track to the riverbed below would also
“ We plan to lead visitors away from
the fall hazard area by constructing a
new 70m by 1.2m wide track to a 5m by
3.5m viewing platform,” Mr Davidson
“From the viewing platform, a low key
track with steps will wind 15m down to
The work follows two significant
upgrades at the gorge in 2009 and 2010,
including a new car park and toilet
investment which was expected to
start last year and be completed
this month, was shelved last year.
Those improvements included the
construction of a second suspension
bridge across the river and a new scenic
loop track up the south bank, with three
new viewing platforms.
At the time, DOC said the
redevelopment was delayed because
there was still work to do on the
proposal. The track had already been
marked out and engineer surveys and
concept drawings completed. It was to
be reviewed again in the new financial
Mr Davidson said last week that whole
project remained on hold but would be
reassessed in the coming year.
“The Hokitika Gorge is important to
the district and we are committed to
providing a safe and appealing tourist
An estimated 40,000 people visit the
scenic gorge each year.
New viewing platform planned for Hokitika Gorge
A proposed new
for regional highway
improvements has been
welcomed by the West
Coast ’s key transport
The proposal — for up
to $90 million a year to
be spent in the regions
from 2015-16 — is part
of a draft government
policy statement (GPS)
on transport released on
June 16 by Transport
Minister Gerry Brownlee.
“This is a great
opportunity for the
regions,” West Coast
chairman Andrew Robb,
who chairs the Regional
Council, with assistance
from the West Coast and
other similarly positioned
regions and districts,
has been working
together to encourage
to come up with a
mechanism for regional
highway projects. The
proposed new regional
would be contestable.
“It’s fairer to have
a dedicated regional
fund so we don’t have
to compete against the
likes of Auckland and
Wellington. It puts
the emphasis back on
the importance of our
regions to the New
Zealand economy,” Mr
Proposed new funding
boost for regional
The old Evans Creek rail
bridge, between Inchbonnie and
Rotomanu, is being replaced with
a concrete structure.
Kiwi Rail is in the process of
replacing the wooden bridge as part
of its nationwide infrastructure
involves replacing timber bridges
with modern concrete structures.
Kiwi Rail structures engineering
manager Samuel Grave said the
Evans Creek replacement, on
the Midland Line, was being
undertaken as a priority as it
had a high ranking on the risk
“Kiwi Rail is not only replacing
the sub and super structures of
the bridge but its length will
be increased from 20m to 28m.
This extension will increase the
water flow beneath the bridge
and minimise the flood risk,” Mr
The work is scheduled to be
finished at the end of July and the
new bridge will have a lifespan of
Bridge 65 SNL near Reefton
is also set to undergo major
maintenance work in the near
future. That will involve replacing
the sleepers and a new walkway
installed along the bridge.
Mr Grave said sites varied
considerably and the budget for
specific sites depended on what
solutions were developed at the
time for each site.
Kiwi Rail did not have plans to
replace any further West Coast
bridges in the near future.
Old Evans Creek rail
bridge to be replaced
Police have laid charges against
a man who allegedly assaulted a
Westport woman 10 days ago, but
they still have not found him.
Tandy Robertson, 33, has been
charged with assault with intent
to commit sexual connection and
threatening to kill.
Police allege he assaulted a
27-year-old woman in Westport.
Mr Robertson is also wanted on
an unrelated warrant for failing to
appear at the Invercargill District
Detective sergeant Gavin Nichols,
of Greymouth police, said today
that police doubted Mr Robertson
was still in Buller, but had no idea
where he might be.
“ We’d still be keen to hear from
anyone who has any information as
to where he is. ”
He declined to elaborate on
the circumstances behind the
alleged assault, which police said
at the time were “of concern”.
— Westport News
Alleged sex assailant charged
Two men appeared in Westport District Court
last week facing charges of ill-treatment of
Hayden Lee Flintoft, 27, of Nelson, pleaded
guilty to ill-treating animals after a charge of
possessing a firearm was withdrawn.
Defending, David Holloway asked that no
conviction be entered and the police summary of
facts not be read.
Flintoff hoped to apply for a discharge without
conviction following restorative justice, Mr
Flintoff was remanded at large until July 17.
Cameron George Intemann Hurst, 21, of
Reefton, pleaded not guilty to two charges
of ill-treatment of animals and one of
possessing a firearm. He was remanded for
a pre-hearing conference and reser ved the
right to elect for a jury trial to be considered.
— Westport News
Men face animal cruelty charges
PICTURE: Nicholas McBride
NZ Post West Coast area manager Matthew Bell and West Coast registrar of electors Sue Gage go over a fraction of the 45,874
enrolment update packs for the West Coast-Tasman Electorate which were being sent out today.
Election update packs in the post
Team New Zealand boss Grant
Dalton donned his motorbike leathers
as he blew off steam yesterday at the
Hampton Downs track, south of
The Herald on Sunday reported that
Dalton, who earned $2 million a year
during the last America’s Cup campaign,
splashed out $100,000 on a motorbike
weeks before he went to the Government
with a funding request. He is believed to
have traded up an older-model Ducati
and also bought a limited-edition 1199
Panigale R. He also added a classic Mk1
Suzuki to his collection.
He is said to have an impressive collection
of cars and bikes at his Auckland home.
— APNZ-New Zealand Herald
Dalton splashes out on
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