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 New Zealand earthquake: Evacuees arrive in Christchurch aboard naval ship HMNZS Canterbury

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PostSubject: New Zealand earthquake: Evacuees arrive in Christchurch aboard naval ship HMNZS Canterbury   Thu Nov 17, 2016 3:08 pm



Hundreds of survivors stranded by a huge earthquake that struck central New Zealand three days ago have reached Christchurch on a naval ship, as engineers in the capital, Wellington, assessed the state of dozens of damaged buildings.

Key points:


  • About 450 tourists and residents taken to Christchurch

  • Government announces $7.1 million package to help Kaikoura businesses

  • About 60 buildings in Wellington suffer damage



About 450 tourists and residents from the small seaside town of Kaikoura were taken by the New Zealand navy's multi-role vessel HMNZS Canterbury 150 kilometres south to Christchurch, the South Island's largest city.
Most tourists had continued their journeys, but about 130 people were being housed temporarily in Canterbury University's student halls.
A student volunteer army, formed after a magnitude-6.3 earthquake that killed almost 200 people in Christchurch in 2011, had mobilised to help the evacuees, university spokeswoman Margaret Agnew said.
"They've set up to feed people, house people, they've got all the facilities they need," she said.
"We've set them up with wifi, that was one of the things they were asking for."

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NZ Defence Force 

@NZDefenceForce
[ltr]WATCH || Behind the scenes with HMNZS Canterbury yesterday as the crew evacuated about 450 people, four dogs & more from Kaikoura! [img(16.05px,17px)]https://abs.twimg.com/emoji/v2/72x72/1f436.png[/img][img(16.05px,17px)]https://abs.twimg.com/emoji/v2/72x72/2693.png[/img][/ltr]
4:37 AM - 17 Nov 2016




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Kaikoura, a fishing community and popular whale-watching base ringed by steep mountains, had been completely cut off by large landslides that covered road and rail links.
With damage expected to take months to repair, the Government announced a $NZ7.5 million ($7.1 million) package to support small businesses in Kaikoura for two months.
"This is a situation where the whole of Kaikoura and surrounding towns are literally out of business," Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce told reporters.
"These companies … are going to have a sustained reduction in their turnover to the point of almost nothing for a long period of time and that's why we think it's appropriate for the Government to step in."
Two people were killed and dozens injured by the magnitude-7.8 quake — two nearly simultaneous tremors that ruptured fault lines across the top of the rugged South Island.
The timing of the quake — shortly after midnight on Sunday — combined with the epicentre being in a sparsely populated region prevented a higher toll, authorities said.
PHOTO: Tourists evacuated from Kaikoura earlier this week. (AP: Royal New Zealand Defence Force)

Dozens of Wellington buildings suffer structural damage

In Wellington, as many as 60 buildings suffered structural damage, including a multi-storey building near the parliament complex that would have to be taken down, engineers said.
Wellington is bisected by several fault lines, and large areas of its business district are built on reclaimed land, raising questions about building practices in the capital despite some of the world's strictest codes.
"There are some sites that are really not suitable for certain types of structures," Paul Campbell, the president of the New Zealand Structural Engineering Society, told Radio New Zealand.
Quote :
"For example, I would seriously question putting a hospital or essential services on reclaimed land."
The force of the tremor was most evident in the upper South Island, where parts of the coast moved metres.
Civil Defence evacuated some residents near the Hapuku and Ure Rivers, further north, where landslides from the earthquakes had blocked the rivers.
"There is a 150-metre-high dam caused by the earthquakes which could rapidly fail, spilling water and debris from the new 'lake' over (or through) the dam due to heavy rain and building pressure," Civil Defence Canterbury said on its Facebook page.
Storms lashed the region on Thursday and seismologists were still recording hundreds of aftershocks — some 2,000 have rattled the region since the initial shock.
Government body Geonet Science estimated an almost one-in-three chance of another earthquake of magnitude 7–7.8 hitting the region within the next 30 days.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-11-17/new-zealand-quake-evacuees-get-food-shelter-wifi-in-christchurch/8033662
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New Zealand earthquake: Evacuees arrive in Christchurch aboard naval ship HMNZS Canterbury
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