Further setback for besieged residents

19:40, Mar 06 2014
GIVING UP: Slater Street resident Terry de Thierry.
GIVING UP: Slater Street resident Terry de Thierry.

Christchurch homeowner Kelly Rush started rebuilding his quake-damaged home only days before he saw water "bubbling" up through the floorboards.

Now he doesn't know what to do.

Rush and his wife moved into their Carrick St garage last Monday, when earthquake remediation work finally started on their house.

"It has been drawn up. It has been consented.

"We're literally one-and-a-half weeks in."

Their property has flooded before, inundating their garage and yard, but never their house - until Wednesday.


Water swamped boxes of clothing, linen, photographs and other personal possessions they had stored in their garage.

Yesterday, Rush and his builder Bryan Dempster were cleaning up.

Rush's land has a TC3 rating, category nine, which was "the closest thing to red that you can be".

He said if authorities red-zoned the land, and compensated home-owners, "there would be people that would take it".

"A neighbour has packed up and left and is not coming back. For three years our lives have been on hold. And how long is it going to take now?"

Around the corner in Francis Ave, which was also hit hard, contractors were spraying contaminated road cones with disinfectant.

Toilet paper and sewage was still flowing out of a drain in the road.

In Slater St, garden hoe in hand, Terry de Thierry leaned against his car.

"I have given up," he said.

De Thierry's property flooded a handful of times last year, including in June, but "the other floods were not as bad. It didn't get into the house."

Yesterday, the carpet in his house squelched underfoot.

There was a tide mark on the wall and floor mats were drying outside in the sun.

"You feel down, but what can you do? It's nature," he said.

The Press