Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


University of Canterbury to help with forestry safety

University of Canterbury to help with forestry safety

September 2, 2014

The University of Canterbury is to launch a new research project to make sure New Zealand’s new forestry roads are safe and are established with minimal environmental impact.

The New Zealand forestry industry is building more than 1400km of new roads a year and the research, to be conducted by Dr Kris Brown, will help improve design standards.

``The importance of infrastructure is widely recognised by forestry stakeholders, but the New Zealand Independent Forestry Safety Review Panel has heard that the quality and adequacy of forestry roads, bridges and skid sites are variable and often not up to the mark.

``I hope our research at the university’s School of Forestry will help raise standards for design, construction and maintenance of forestry roads.

``The likelihood of accidents can increase when infrastructure is not specifically designed for heavy forestry machinery and logging trucks. Infrastructure not wide or strong enough to withstand repeated heavy loads has been cited by the coroner as a contributing factor in accidents,’’ Dr Brown says.

He will investigate these important issues through his research and outreach to industry. His work has been helped by $100,000 grant, over five years, to the university from the New Zealand Forest Owners Association. Associate Professor Rien Visser says support from the association is important to the university’s forestry research.

``There is a need for more core forest engineering skills for all graduating forestry students, including harvest planning, being able to cost-effectively design infrastructure, understanding environmental standards and, most importantly, being able to effectively manage safety. Dr Brown will also expand his research into logging efficiency and forestry safety.’’

Associate Professor Visser says building a new road to access forest areas for harvesting can easily cost more than $100,000 per kilometre. These are costs that have to be recovered from the value of the trees harvested.

``The industry spends about $200 million a year on roads. As such our industry is seeking to build ‘fit-for-purpose roads’, a concept that attempts to minimise costs while not compromising safety and environmental performance.

``Research done to date at the University of Canterbury has indicated that the forest industry can readily improve its road construction practice by correctly testing, and subsequently compacting the substrate on which the road will be built.

``Most forestry companies use aggregates from in-forest quarries, and these aggregates do not typically meet a strength standard on which the national design curves are based. While new design standards for the lower quality material being used have been developed, we still need to test their validity.

``Safety is so important. A fully loaded logging truck can lose traction on a corner on a steep section of road with potentially fatal consequences. We have a comprehensive final year forest road engineering course to ensure our graduates enter the workforce have some of these core skills.’’

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The Team Behind Trump's Throne

Forget the Putin factor. Daily, the team of charlatans, bigots and stunningly ignorant crackpots that Trump is appointing to head key federal agencies is just as alarming. These are positions with vast power and budgetary discretion over policies that stand to affect tens of millions of vulnerable Americans. Sad! More>>

 

Gordon Campbell: On Bill English, Abroad

If David Cameron was the closest thing John Key had to a political mentor, their successors also share a whole lot in common. Theresa May and Bill English were both propelled into the top jobs as the result of unexpected resignations, and without much in the way of credible competition from their colleagues... More>>

ALSO:

Pike River: Labour Bill To Override Safety Act For Mine Entry

“Bill English has been hiding behind the legal excuse that any attempt to re-enter the mine to recover the bodies might place the mine’s owner, Solid Energy Limited, and its directors in breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Populism And Labour 2017

For many people on the centre-left, populism is a dirty word, and a shorthand for the politics of bigotry. In this country, it has tended to be equated with the angry legions of New Zealand First. Who knew they were not just a reactionary spasm, but the wave of the future? More>>

Oxfam: 30% Of NZ Owns Less Wealth Than Our Two Richest Men

The research also reveals that the richest one per cent have 20 per cent of the wealth in New Zealand, while 90 per cent of the population owns less than half of the nation’s wealth. The research forms part of a global report released to coincide with this week’s annual meeting of political and business leaders at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. More>>

ALSO:

Hospitals: Resident Doctors Set To Strike Again

Despite discussions between the DHBs and NZRDA over safer hours for resident doctors progressing during the last week, the strike planned for next week appears set to proceed. More>>

ALSO:

Not So Super Fund: More Burning Ethical Questions For Steven Joyce

Greens: Radio New Zealand reported this morning that the New Zealand Superfund has $77 million invested in 47 coal companies that the Norwegian Government’s Pension Fund – the largest sovereign fund in the world – has blacklisted. More>>

Activism: Greenpeace Intercepts World’s Biggest Seismic Oil Ship

Greenpeace crew have made contact with the world’s biggest seismic oil ship after travelling 50 nautical miles on two rigid-hulled inflatables off the coast of Wairarapa... Greenpeace radioed the master of the Amazon Warrior to deliver an open letter of protest signed by over 60,000 New Zealanders. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: Why Tax Cuts In 2017 Would Be A (Proven) Bad Idea

Ever since the world fell prey to the mullahs of the free market in the 1980s, no amount of real world evidence has managed dispel one key tenet of their economic faith. Namely, the idea that if you cut income taxes and taxes on small business, a wave of individual enterprise and entrepreneurial energy will thus be unleashed, profits will rise and – hey bingo! – the tax cuts will soon be paying for themselves ... More>>

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
More RSS  RSS
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news