It is now June and more than 100 days since Christchurch was devastated by the quake. As such, I felt it was time to provide an update. Having read back through my Update 2, written about two months ago, I realised that absolutely nothing has changed.
I know of no members who have settled successfully with EQC and insurance and as such are safely able to return home or for those remaining in their homes have had repairs started. A few have had temporary repairs completed but most of those have been carried out by Fire Service staff who have volunteered to assist.
My personal situation is very typical where we are constantly told that we are on the priority list but to date nothing has happened. Until EQC have made an assessment we must just wait. Patience certainly is a virtue in the South.
As we pass the city centre it is amazing still to see the amount of demolition work remaining. Only a few buildings have come down with many hundreds still cordoned, awaiting the demolition ball. Rubble is strewn across foot paths and streets everywhere with no end in sight to the work. A lot of work is dependent on the removal of 2 or 3 other multi story sites but it is very slow progress.
Work is being done on the development of a new site for City Station with the old Christchurch Womens Hospital site being most likely. Presently staff are referred to as The Street Kids¨ as the appliances are parked under covers on the street due to the the state of the buildings.¨
A new station is planned for the Eastern side of the city as this area is most at risk due to quake damage.
No word yet on the future of Woolston Station and so the shipping containers remain.
To spread resources from City an appliance is now manned at New Brighton and specialist appliances spread to out stations.
The noticeable thing around the city is that we are losing a whole generation of young people. Many have had to move homes a couple of times, they have no work to go to or else are on reduced hours and the citys social scene is destroyed or very scattered. As such they are looking elsewhere with many moving overseas. This exodus will leave a large hole in the years to come.
The after shocks continue, (6700 at last count) with another couple today just to remind us not to relax just yet.
It will be interesting to add another update in a few months and see what, if anything has changed?
Many thanks to all. Kevin Crozier. Region 5 Board Rep. (Yet again)