Posts Tagged ‘Christchurch’

Human vultures out after Christchurch quake

February 25, 2011

Amid the stories of resilience and indomitable spirit that represent the heights to which human behaviour can ascend come also the stories of the human vultures and the depths to which behaviour can fall.

Police sickened by Christchurch looting

A view shows a damaged cathedral after an earthquake in central Christchurch February 22, 2011. A strong quake hit New Zealand's second-biggest city of Christchurch on Tuesday for the second time in five months, toppling buildings, causing multiple fatalities, trapping people beneath rubble and sparking fires.

Damaged cathedral after an earthquake in central Christchurch February 22, 2011: Photograph by: HO Credit: REUTERS

New Zealand police said Friday they were “sickened” at a spate of looting, email scams and bogus appeals for charity in the wake of the deadly Christchurch earthquake.

…. They said residents in the stricken city had reported conmen posing as government officials, wearing reflector vests and brandishing fake identification, going door to door trying to gain access to properties.

Looting and burglaries, including one at the home of a woman feared dead in the disaster, have also been reported, while fraudulent emails soliciting charity donations were also doing the rounds.

“I am frankly sickened by people like this, who see this disaster as an opportunity to prey on vulnerable people,” police superintendent Russell Gibson told Radio New Zealand.

District commander Dave Cliff said drunken disorder was also on the rise in the city, where stressed residents have endured two major earthquakes and thousands of aftershocks in the past six months.

Generators being used to restore infrastructure were among the items stolen.

The consumer affairs ministry warned of an email designed to look like it was from the Red Cross which redirected Internet users to a website where they were asked for credit card details.

“The scam website has the same look and feel as the genuine Red Cross website,” it said.

Another fraudulent email claimed to be from Donate4Charity NZ, a legitimate British-based charity, the department said.

65 dead and 200 trapped in Christchurch quake

February 22, 2011

New Zealand Herald.

Rescue workers on the collapsed Pyne Gould Guiness Building in central Christchurch. Photo / Mark Mitchell

Rescue workers on the collapsed Pyne Gould Guiness Building in central Christchurch. Photo / Mark Mitchell

Prime Minister John Key has told reporters that the death toll from today’s magnitude 6.3 earthquake stands at 65, and Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker said it could quite possibly double. …. TVNZ reports up to 200 people remained trapped in damaged buildings……..

The earthquake shook the city at 12.51pm while streets were crowed with shoppers and office workers. It was not as powerful as the 7.3 that struck in early morning hours of 4 September last year but was much shallower, leading to greater damage.

Scientists put the epicentre at 10km southeast of the city – apparently in the middle of the harbour at Lyttelton, the city’s coastal port – at a depth of only 5km. .. Christchurch has suffered a long series of after shocks following last year’s quake and they continued after the big one today. One tremor of 5.7 occurred five minutes after the main shock and there was another of 5.5 at 2.50pm.

Late in the afternoon after shocks were still occurring in the magnitude 4 range on the Richter Scale. The city’s iconic cathedral in the central square survived September without little damage but its spire fell today and the rest of the building was badly damaged. Christchurch mayor Bob Parker said the damage was much more severe than in the great 7.1 quake almost six months ago.

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