Worried homeowners are finally getting their houses checked in the wake of the recent earthquakes.
Wellington City Council's Quake Check scheme had a slow start before the quakes, with only 80 people asking for a home inspection in the 11 months since its launch in September last year.
However, 80 more had asked for a check in less than a month since the July 21 earthquake, the council said.
Quake Check offers $160 inspections of homes by a registered master or certified builder. The inspection identifies any potential earthquake problems, and estimates how much they would cost to fix, and what should be prioritised.
The council's senior strategic adviser for earthquake resilience, George Skimming, was happy to see inquiries rise.
"After what's happened in Christchurch and Seddon, we should take all the steps to make our homes safe," he said.
He was particularly worried about the problems posed by brick chimneys. "We would like to see people take unused brick chimneys down because they are dangerous in the event of an earthquake."
Checks had also revealed the pilings and foundations of many homes would not stand up to a quake.
The council gathered the assessment results for statistical purposes, but did not keep track of the property owners in the property file, he said. "The result is between the builder and the property owner. It's absolutely confidential."
- © Fairfax NZ News
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