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.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Gordon Campbell: On John Key’s Trip To Iraq

In the embedded press coverage on this trip, the absence so far of any evaluation of the wider context of what New Zealand thinks it is doing at Camp Taji has been striking. More>>


Labour: Parata Puts Brakes On Charter School Appraisal

“When the Ministry of Education recommended they compare the achievements of children at charter schools to those of their counterparts at state schools, the documents show Hekia Parata specifically prohibited them from doing so." More>>


Bad Day For Universities: Gun, Bomb Threats On Three Campuses

Dunedin Police are continuing their investigation into the threat made against the University of Otago. Staff are following a number of lines of inquiry, and police are working to verify the authenticity and source of the post. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Deal Reached In Atlanta

Yes, the TPP has helped to knock a few points off the tariffs facing our exporters. Yet some of those alleged dollar gains may well have been made regardless over time – and without the negative baggage of the concessions in the non-trade areas (intellectual property, copyright extensions, investor-state dispute mechanisms etc) that the TPP deal also brings in its wake. More>> (Cartoon by Dave Wolland)

Public Summaries:


Wellington.Scoop: Serco – First The Prisons, And Now It Wants To Run The Trains

As the government continues its inquiry into Serco’s discredited administration of Mt Eden prison in Auckland, here in Wellington there’s further scrutiny of the British outsourcing company – because it’s competing to take over the running of our commuter trains. More>>


Pre-Signing: Gordon Campbell On The TPP Countdown

To date, the Key government has been unwilling to share any information about this TPP deal until it is too late for outraged public opinion to affect the outcome... the disclosure process is likely to consist of a similarly skewed and careful exercise in spin. More>>


Australia Deportations: English Relaxed On Immigration Centre Conditions

Labour's Annette King: “There have been numerous reports from inside these detention centres on just how bad conditions are... If they were being held in any other foreign jail, I imagine Mr English would be somewhat concerned. More>>


Schools: Achievement-Based Funding Would Be A Disaster

The Education Minister’s speech to the PPTA Conference raising the spectre of achievement data driving a new funding system would be disastrous, says NZEI Te Riu Roa. More>>

  • Video Out-Link - PPTA Annual Conference 2015 on Livestream (Q+A dicussion suggests funding would be directed to less successful schools.)

  • ALSO:

    ECE Report:

    Get More From Scoop



    Search Scoop  
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news