Council guide 'insulting' to quake survivors

Reference should be made to 2011, says woman

EMMA BAILEY
Last updated 05:00 11/03/2014
Tracy Grimwood
RAYMOND BRANSGROVE /FAIRFAX NZ
NEEDS UPDATING: Tracy Grimwood with the recently delivered Timaru District Council Emergency Survival Guide, printed in 2012, which neglects to mention the Christchurch earthquakes were the last deadly quakes in New Zealand.
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Leaving out key facts about the Christchurch earthquakes in an emergency survival guide has upset a woman who moved to Timaru after the fatal disaster.

Tracy Grimwood opened her Timaru District Emergency Survival Guide on Saturday after it arrived in the post, to see it listed the last earthquake to kill people in New Zealand as the 1968 Inangahua earthquake, in which three people died.

"Although we have many earthquakes, so far only a few have been big enough and close enough to settlements to injure people," the guide says.

Above this was a photo of flooding at Caroline Bay in 2012.

In the same guide it states that the value of quake damage to property increased significantly in July 2012, to $3.25 billion, through Earthquake Commission claims after the Christchurch quakes.

Miss Grimwood moved to Timaru with her family from Christchurch in May 2011, following the February 22 quake, as she could not sleep.

"It is quite insulting for people that were in the earthquakes," Miss Grimwood said.

"I didn't suffer a lot in the earthquakes but there were others that did and some of them moved to Timaru."

She contacted Timaru District Council emergency management adviser Lamorna Cooper and voiced her concerns that the information was not up to date.

"I said ‘you haven't read the document' and she said there would be another print run in two months, so why didn't they just wait for the updated version?" she said.

Ms Cooper said that the guide distributed to some Timaru addresses during the weekend was the last of a reprint from 2012.

"At the time we decided not to put too much detail from the Christchurch earthquakes as we suspected a backlash as it was still quite sensitive.

"The next reprint is in a few months and then we will put in updated information," Ms Cooper said.

The guide was funded through advertising and had not cost ratepayers, she said.

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- The Timaru Herald

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