Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


NZ Army to explain civil defence failure

NZ Army to explain civil defence failure

The full facts are yet to emerge concerning the limited rescue operation at the CTV building on 22 February 2011, a former regional councillor says.

Rik Tindall, who was Environment Canterbury's Civil Defence and Emergency Management portfolio chair until April 2010, seeks more answers for the grieving families, friends and public.

The coroner's inquest for the Canterbury earthquakes closed in December, with critical questions aimed at NZ Fire Service performance. Tindall finds these neither fair nor sufficient explanation for how the rescue stalled.

“We owe it to everyone, living and dead, to discover what went wrong,”  Tindall says. “Why did civil defence organisation fail so badly that day?”

From what he knows of response structure, authority and responsibility at the disaster site were not the Fire Service's as argued, Tindall explains.

“As at the Pike River coalmine, fatality meant that NZ Police should have had command over the CTV scene, which their inquest evidence states wasn't the case. It is clear that Police, as well as the Fire Service, were overwhelmed at that time, with available resources over-stretched.

“At that point it became Civil Defence duty to give command of the area to military administration, as the only agency resourced with ability to move the stack of rubble in time. The evidence shows this never happened, and everyone regrets the lost, short opportunity to save more lives.

“So the question is, where were the Civil Defence and Army responses, to relieve the Police and Fire Service and accelerate the rescue effort on February 22nd?”, Tindall asks.

His conclusion, pending contrary information, is that the capacity lost in many areas through government intervention in Environment Canterbury, to make a special private case of water, added terribly to the toll that day.

Tindall points out, “what was definitively a regional emergency – one spanning three council territorial boundaries – was never managed as such, intentionally. A strange mix of city and national emergency was fudged, to accommodate the ambitions of Mayor Parker and Prime Minister Key, instead. This sudden political dis-organisation, of long-established best practice for coordinating emergency services, made the hole through which prompt rescue plummeted. This best explains the shocking confusion that cost trapped lives as 23 February dawned. Parker and Key should be ashamed.”

Tindall requests that all NZ Defence Force and Civil Defence reports, of their actions from 22 February 2011, be immediately made public. “All levels of government must be held fully accountable,” he firmly recommends.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On Andrew Little’s Debut, Mockingjay, And Drunk Texting

John Key’s credibility has taken a hammering this week – at least among the 50% of the electorate who have always had doubts about him on that score.

The other substantial story of the week has been about Andrew Little’s debut as Labour leader, which has received top marks, especially among the 25% of the electorate still voting Labour. According to some reports, the Labour caucus has been ‘in seventh heaven’ about Little’s success this week in taking it to the government in the House. More>>

ALSO:

 
 

Parliament Today:

Gordon Campbell: On Government Arrogance

Right now, National is ramming anti-terrorism measures through Parliament. This legislation will grant the SIS the power to carry out 48 hour bouts of surveillance on anyone without a warrant, and will bestow on government the power to unilaterally revoke anyone’s passports and thus deny them the freedom to travel. More>>

ALSO:

Glenn Inquiry: Report Offers Solutions To Family Violence

The People’s Blueprint unveiled today by Sir Owen Glenn’s independent inquiry into child abuse and domestic violence outlines a new, more cohesive and effective system for reducing New Zealand’s alarmingly high family violence rates. More>>

ALSO:

Environment Commissioner: Changing Climate And Rising Seas - Understanding The Science

A rising sea will be with us for a long time to come – one way or another we will have to adapt. But how high and how fast the water rises will be influenced by the speed at which the world – including New Zealand – reduces greenhouse gas emissions over the coming decades. More>>

ALSO:

Key Texts With Whale Oil Released: PM Can’t Be Trusted Over Dirty Politics Defence - Greens

John Key’s answers to questions about dirty politics can’t be trusted, after he was forced to admit that he had misled journalists and Parliament about contact with attack blogger Cameron Slater, said the Green Party today.. More>>

ALSO:

Temporary Release Crackdown Continues: Corrections Review Of Phillip Smith Case

“The review by Corrections’ Chief Custodial Officer reveals that the plan for Smith’s series of temporary releases was overly ambitious and misinformed. He’s a highly manipulative and deceptive person who although technically eligible, should not have been considered for temporary release." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news