Home' Greymouth Star : August 19th 2014 Contents Greymouth Star
2 - Tuesday, August 19, 2014
A 36-year-old Westport man was
arrested for assault arising from a
domestic argument last evening.
Police were called about 5pm. The
victim was not seriously injured. The
offender was expected to make a
brief appearance in the Greymouth
District Court today.
A 2KW generator has been
reported stolen from a shed at
Kopara. Greymouth police said the
machine was taken from the remote
site some time over recent weeks.
Westport police want to hear from
anyone who may have seen the
person who stole a backpack from
a car parked at the south end of
Romilly Street about 5pm yesterday.
The owner of the pack was moving
gear from the car to a house and
when they returned to the vehicle,
the pack was gone.
Greymouth Bridge Club play
on Wednesday was won by Ash
Hamilton and Gerard Bardell
with 63%, with Diana Fenson and
Cynthia El-Hinsheri second on 58%.
On Thursday, newcomers Julie Raye
and Rhonda Levien beat seasoned
players to come out on top with
57.1% . Sue Glue and Mary Pupich
54% were second, and Allison
Palmer and Joy Willman 52.4%
Boy found safe
A 13-year-old missing for a week in
Whanganui has been found “safe and
well”. Topine Horomona had been
last seen on Tuesday, August 12, when
he was dropped off at a karate lesson
on Ridgeway Street. A media release
last evening said about 5.30pm police
were advised of Topine’s whereabouts
in Whanganui. — APNZ
Port of Greymouth. — Arrivals:
Nil. Departures: Galatea II, two
Greymouth vessels. In port:
Remus, 20 other vessels. Expected
departures: Nil. Expected arrivals:
Jay Elaine, Thursday; Cook Canyon,
sorr y for
The Accident Compensation
Corporation has had to apologise
for data which suggested that
West Coast residents claimed
three times more for injuries than
they actually did.
The injury statistics tool on the
ACC website allows people to
search for claims using a number
of menus, including the scene of
the accident, age and gender of
the person involved, and the total
value of claims for each year in
each New Zealand region.
The data for the West Coast
showed that the total cost of
claims from this region was
around the $21 million to $22
million mark, each year between
2009 and 2012.
However, it also showed the
claims figure for July 2012 to
June 2013 had skyrocketed to
ACC senior media adviser
Stephanie Melville admitted to
the Greymouth Star that figure
was wrong, and should be $22m.
Last week, ACC released injury
comparison reports for each
district which showed the top
five causes of claims and how
much was claimed.
The Westland district figures
for the highest cost claims by the
scene of the accident, its cause
and its main contributory factor,
which were listed about $79m,
were also incorrect, Ms Melville
“As a result of an error in
compiling ACC injury cost
subsequently incorporated in
the Westland community injury
profile, some of the claim cost
information was incorrect.
Specifically, claim costs between
July 2012 and June 2013.
“ P lease accept our sincere
apology for the error. O ur
intention with this information is
to generate positive community
conversations which may help
identify where, why and how a
higher number of accidents may
be happening, and from there
support the community in its
initiatives to look after its own.”
Ms Melville said ACC was
“extremely aware” of the need to
have the data corrected as quickly
Those figures showed that
100,475 days of productivity were
lost as a result of injury claims on
the West Coast between 2012
and 2013, made up of 40,428 in
Grey, 33,890 days in Buller and
26,157 in Westland.
Most people on the Coast were
involved in recreation or sporting
activities when they were injured,
cited as the reason for 29.8%
of claims in Westland, 27.8%
of Buller claims and 25.1% of
c laims in Grey.
In both Buller and Grey, the
third most costly contributing
factor behind injuries were health
professionals. In Grey, $500,573
was claimed due to health staff,
and $357,309 in Buller.
The most common location
for an accident in Grey district
was the home, where 48.6% of
injuries occurred. It was the same
case in Buller, where 58.1% of
c laims were in the home, along
with 44.1% in Westland.
Tuesday August 19
Urgent Cases Only
Phone 768 5942 first
Tai Poutini Polytechnic carpentry students Austen Green, 17, left, and Kayleb Bromilow hard at work on a new house. Every year
students on the carpentr y course get to build a house as part of their on the job training towards a qualification. This year it was
decided to build outside due to congestion in the polytechnic building barn, in Chapel Street. The property has already been sold
under ballot to a new home buyer in Westport, and will be delivered once completed at the end of the course, about November 28.
Polytechnic students building new home
PICTURE: Ben Aulakh
PICTURE: Forest and Bird
Smith pours cold
water on fire claims
Conser vation Minister
Nick Smith says claims from
Forest and Bird that Bathurst
Resources has inadvertently
caused fires on the Denniston
Plateau are ill-informed, as
the fires have been burning for
“The smoke is coming from
an old mine shaft where low
level underground fires have
burned for decades. These fires
also occur naturally in this rich
coalfield. These smouldering
seams pose no significant threat
and are left to burn naturally,”
Dr Smith said.
“Smoke appears periodically
relative to atmospheric
conditions and has done so for
many years. ”
The fire was kilometres from
Bathurst ’s proposed Escarpment
Mine, he said.
It also showed it was not the
pristine area that some claimed.
Department of Conser vation,
conser vation ser vices manager
Bob Dickson also said the fires
had been burning for decades
and were the result of both
historic mining activity and
naturally combustive material
beneath the plateau.
The fires posed no significant
threat and were generally left
burn out naturally.
However, Forest and Bird said
Bathurst had recently drilled
core samples close to the fires,
and drained a lake in the vicinity.
The coal seam that Bathurst
recently won permission to
open-cast mine on the plateau
was adjacent to the seam that
was currently being mined at the
Bathurst-owned Cascade Mine,
in a valley below the Denniston
“This is too much of a
coincidence. There’s little doubt
this is linked to Bathurst ’s
mining activities,” Forest and
Bird top of the south field officer
Debs Martin said.
“A major underground fire
could seriously affect the unique
trees and wildlife beyond
the area that Bathurst has
permission to mine. ”
The Grey District Council is considering
cutting the operating hours of its three rural
resource centres to better reflect the actual
amount of use.
The council has suggested cutting 29 hours
from the Blackball, Moana and Nelson Creek
centres, going from 91 hours to 62 hours a
week. Changes to operating days have also
The council calculated the resource centres
were used for only 41 hours, and it needed to
make them more efficient to offset costs.
It also noted that the sole contractor in
charge of all three centres was currently only
on a temporary basis.
Chief executive Paul Pretorius said they did
not expect to make great savings with the
changes, but they would prevent a probable
increase in costs.
“ We would save on a new tender process. By
reducing hours we hope to break even,” Mr
Assets and engineering manager Mel
Sutherland said the council was trying to
match the hours closer to the actual level of use.
However, Mayor Tony Kokshoorn said the
changes “won’t help at all”.
The resource centres were paid for through
a combination of user fees and general rates.
“Some people can only go on off-peak
times,” Mr Kokshoorn said.
The council also recognised that by limiting
the times could likely lead to an increase in
material being dumped at the gates to the
It was decided to put out two tenders for
each of the times and see what the difference
in cost was.
“If it is not excessively more, then give
everyone what they pay for,” Mr Kokshoorn
If necessary, the council would consult with
the public once tenders were in.
Council ponders new dump hours
of the Westport News
Air New Zealand is
changing the time of its
morning weekday flights
between Wellington and
Westport from February
next year, in response to a
need for better timing.
Kelly Kilgour said Air
New Zealand received
suggesting it better align
flights with business
As a result, the
morning flights to and
from Westport have
been re-timed to depart
Wellington at 8.30am
and depart Westport at
flights on Mondays
and Thursdays from
Wellington to Westport
arrive at 9.45am and
depart Westport at
Flights from Wellington
to Westport on Tuesday
and Friday arrive at
9.20am and depart
Westport at 9.40am.
Air New Zealand
reduced its schedule
between Westport and
Wellington from 12 to
10 return ser vices a week
earlier this year when it
cut its Saturday return
ser vice and Wednesday
morning ser vice.
July missions flown by the
NZCC Rescue Helicopter based in
July 2: To Totara Flat to a car and
train accident. A 20-year-old man with
chest injuries was flown to Grey Base
July 3: To Mount Hutt skifield from
where A 16-year-old man with a head
injury was flown to Christchurch
July 4: Called out by Rescue Co-
ordination Centre to beacon activation.
A man was retrieved and flown out of
the Taipo River.
July 5: Called out by the police to the
Wanganui River to retrieve a hunter.
July 8: To Buller Hospital for patient
transfer to Christchurch.
July 11: To Buller Hospital from
where a 66-year-old woman with a
medical condition was flown to Grey
Base Hospital. To Maruia from where a
42-year-old woman with a neck injury as
a result of a motor vehicle accident was
flown to Grey Base Hospital.
July 17: To Buller Hospital to transfer
a 58-year-old man to Grey Base
July 27: To Reefton, from where
a 47-year-old woman was flown to
A trial to clean up one of the most polluted
coalmine sites in New Zealand is nearing
completion in the Nine Mile Valley, north of
The Bellvue Mine was abandoned in 1965.
In 2004, CRL Energy sampled water
chemistry at mine sites on the West Coast, and
elsewhere in New Zealand, and discovered that
acid mine drainage at Bellvue was the most
acidic of about 30 mine sites.
“It flowed from the mine 3km or 4km to the
sea, through Cannel Creek and Nine Mile
Creek,” CRL Energy South Island general
manager James Pope said.
More recently, a study was completed by a
University of Canterbury student who wanted
to look further into mine drainage clean-up.
Dr Pope said one was a bio-chemical process,
the second used crushed limestone from a
local quarry and the third used mussel shells.
All were “set and forget ” systems that could be
established, then left alone without needing
regular inter vention.
In recent years, Grey District Mayor Tony
Kokshoorn has been talking about opening up
the Nine Mile Valley, with its attractive rock
formations and long-abandoned mines, to
Dr Pope said they were keen to dovetail with
the initiative. For now, the trials had been
small scale but could be used to select the most
appropriate method that could be applied to the
There could also be information panels at the
site, explaining the clean-up process.
“ We are doing our best to raise awareness of
these sites and use results from our research
project to provide options that can be picked up
by the community (as well as local and central
government) and ultimately be used to clean up
some of these sites that have been around for
CRL Energy and its research programmes
with Landcare Research, Otago and Canterbury
universities had also been closely involved in
working with the Department of Conser vation
to restore the polluted Waiuta and Alexander
goldmine sites, near Reefton.
Trial to clean up
old mine site
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