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


26 Witnesses to Be Questioned On Pike River Search & Rescue

Monday 29 August 2011

26 Witnesses to Be Questioned On Pike River Mine Search and Rescue

The Royal Commission on the Pike River Coal Mine Tragedy will call 26 witnesses during public hearings starting next week examining the search and rescue at Pike River Coal Mine.

Following an analysis of evidence and documents already received the Commission has identified key questions it wants the witnesses to address at the hearings which are scheduled to run from Monday 5 September to Friday 23 September in Greymouth.

Questions to be answered include:

• Was there a second means of egress from the mine?
• Was emergency response planning and training at the mine adequate?
• Were rescue efforts hampered by a lack of vital information?
• Were the rescue efforts conducted by the right people and well run?
• Was there ever a window of opportunity to re-enter the mine?
• Were communications with the families well handled?

As well as looking back the hearings will involve a forward focus. The Commission will seek answers to the question: how could the rescue response have been handled better?

Constructive suggestions and criticisms relating to the rescue efforts last November will be sought from representatives of the New Zealand and overseas agencies involved in the operation.

The witnesses to be questioned during the Phase Two hearings include workers and mine managers, representatives of various agencies involved in the rescue effort including police, Mines Rescue Service and members of the men’s families.

Phase Two: Search and Rescue- Hearing Timetable

Week One

Monday 5 September: 11.30am

Opening Statement - Counsel Assisting the Commission
Nigel Hughes - Detective Senior Sergeant, New Zealand Police
Johannes Strydom - former Pike River Coal (PRC) Electrician
Daniel Rockhouse - former PRC Miner
Tuesday 6 September – Thursday 8 September

Douglas White - former PRC General Manager
Stephen Ellis - Statutory Mine Manager Pike River Coal Ltd (in Receivership)
Daniel Duggan - former PRC Control Room Officer
Neville Rockhouse - former PRC Safety and Training Manager

Friday 9 September

Glenville Stiles - Trainer contracted to Mines Rescue Service
John Taylor - Project Investigations Manager, Solid Energy New Zealand

Week Two

Monday 12 September – Friday
16 September

Grant Nicholls - Assistant Commissioner, New Zealand Police
Gary Knowles - Superintendent, New Zealand Police
Darren Brady - Manager, Safety in Mines Testing and Research Station (Simtars), Queensland
Timothy Whyte - Industry Health and Safety Representative, Construction, Forestry, Mining and Engineering Union, Australia
Seamus Devlin - State Manager, NSW Mines Rescue, Australia
James Stuart-Black - National Manager, Special Operations, New Zealand Fire Service
Lesley Haines - Deputy Chief Executive, Labour Group, Department of Labour
Trevor Watts - General Manager, Mines Rescue Service
Craig Smith - General Manager Underground Mines, Solid Energy New Zealand
Week Three

Monday 19 September
Lauryn Marden – Family
Tara Kennedy – Family
Sonya Rockhouse – Family
Carol Rose – Family
Marty Palmer – Family
Richard Valli – Family
Bernard Monk – Family

Tuesday 20 September

Peter Whittall - CEO Pike River Coal Ltd (in Receivership)

NB: The timetable is indicative only and may change as the hearing progresses.

The public is welcome at the Commission’s hearings. Transcripts of each day’s hearings are expected to be available from http://pikeriver.royalcommission.govt.nz by 6.00pm on the day.

The hearings will be live streamed through TVNZ’s and TV3’s websites.

A list of the questions to guide the Phase Two: Search and Rescue hearings and the Commission’s List of Issues it needs to evaluate to address its Terms of Reference are available from http://pikeriver.royalcommission.govt.nz.

There are four phases to the Commission’s Inquiry: Phase One-Context, Phase Two-Search and Rescue, Phase Three-What happened at the Pike River Mine and why, and Phase Four-Policy Aspects.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Whether We’re Punching Above Our Weight, And Should We Care?

According to Pierre De Coubertin, founder of the modern Olympic Games, the Olympic ideal was not about “winning, but fighting well. Life is not conquering, but fighting well.” True to that ideal, young people from all over the world do still congregate together once every four years to compete peacefully against each other... More>>


Finance: Finance Minister And RBNZ Governor Agree To Update MOU On Macro-prudential Policy

Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Reserve Bank Governor Adrian Orr have updated the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on macro-prudential policy to further protect the financial system and support the Government’s housing objectives... More>>

Government: Offers Formal Apology For Dawn Raids
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has today formally apologised to Pacific communities impacted by the Dawn Raids in the 1970s.

Between 1974 and 1976, a series of rigorous immigration policies were carried out that resulted in targeted raids on the homes of Pacific families... More>>

Government: Bill Introduced To Protect Against Conversion Practices

Legislation has been introduced to Parliament to protect against practices intended to change or suppress someone’s sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression... More>>


Human Rights Commission: Successive Governments Responsible For Massive Breaches Of The Right To A Decent Home

Te Kahu Tika Tangata / Human Rights Commission has today launched Framework Guidelines on the Right to a Decent Home in Aotearoa and announced that it will hold a national inquiry into housing... More>>

NZUS Council: Welcomes Nomination Of Senator Tom Udall As US Ambassador To NZ

The NZUS Council welcomes the nomination of Senator Tom Udall to the role of US Ambassador to New Zealand and Samoa, NZUS Council executive director Jordan Small said... More>>

BusinessNZ: Visa Extensions Welcomed
BusinessNZ has welcomed the extension of some critical skill visa durations and changes to immigration systems to speed processing. Chief Executive Kirk Hope says move acknowledges advocacy by the hospitality sector, the BusinessNZ Network and others, and comes not a moment too soon.... More>>




InfoPages News Channels