On a completely different subject for a change…. today is a day for reflection, as we look at out vastly changed lives.
Two years ago today on the 22nd February 2011 we had an 6.3 magnitude earthquake in Christchurch. When I finally got home and looked at the house it was obvious to me that the house was munted. The side wall of the house had separated from the front wall and had a 15cm crack showing daylight into the kitchen. The back wall of the house had a 5 cm wide crack in the foundations, it was stuffed. The inside walls have NO timber framing, as they are cinder block, (cinders and a wee bit of cement) they have cracks from floor to ceiling. I have the cracks covered in “100 mile an hour tape” to stop the drafts. There is not a sheet of gib in the house that is not cracked or ripped.
With some Kiwi ingenuity: help from a kind neighbour and a ute we pushed the side wall back into place and strapped it and did some remedial propping of the back wall. This propping after 2 years is now failing. For 2 years we have not used 2 bedrooms in the house as we run the risk of falling into the garden. (It is a 2 level house.)
We have re arranged the lounge and turned it into a bedroom.
(While we were doing this 2 men in a ute from the CCC were putting plastic tape across the entrance to the reserve next door, to prevent entry, we suggested that they would be better utilised helping the people and maybe they would like to help us. ha ha silly us)
It took AMI over a year to work out that this house was finished.
EQC, surprisingly, given other people’s experience, came to the party promptly and they wrote the house off.
For 2 years to the day, I have lived in a drafty, unsafe house. If I had moved out in February 2011, I would have used up all my insurance money and I would be no further ahead.
Southern Response has given me no indication of when I will be re built. Repeated phone calls elicit unsatisfactory answers. The last call I made a few days ago, was a waste of time. The response? “you are in the pre-design queue, and that will be looked at in the later part of this year, Than you go into the build queue. Maybe next year……”
Timely assistance. I think not. Reasonable assistance. I think not. Was my insurance policy a good one? It was full replacement…. I think not….
Brother Joe, lives just down the road, his story is no better, his house is brick and tile and needs to be re clad inside and out. It is structurally sound. It is a simple case. Or it should be…..
In his case … Southern de-solutions (his name for them) do not answer emails and Southern Response appears to be in a “dispute” with EQC over apportionment. (I can not get to the bottom of it but basically Southern Response wants EQC to pay another $50000 approx for June 2011 earthquake as far as i can work out .) All his damage was done in February 2011. If Southern Response had let him fix his own house with his mates who are all builders, roofers and brick layers he could have had the house fixed well over a year ago. As it is his house is drafty and cold… at least its dry. For heavens sake give him the cash and let him do it himself.
Interestingly here is a link to an article about Southern Response offering some cash settlements. This needs to be expanded to include other situations. http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/rebuilding-christchurch/8327883/Southern-Response-offers-cash
But they are an inefficient, low productivity, government organisation. Lots of project managers but no workers and an inability to make decisions.
New Zealand be very afraid….. this could be you and your family.
ps Southern Response had a public meeting the other day, a very orchestrated and managed affair it was too… link here:
On a more positive note, yea ha! we are just about to start gibing the shop ceiling, we have a new concrete floor and I saw the new windows arrive yesterday for above the verandah! I hope to see the electrician on monday.
The ply on the front is in danger of being taken off…. I hope….
Progress is depressingly slow in Christchurch.
Ho Humm- lets not celebrate the 22nd of February…..
I have been asked by a reader to add this to my blog. A interesting idea, one I had not considered.
message: I would like to suggest that Christchurch residents, victims of the governments EQC incompetence take to mass civil disobedience as protest against Govt EQC.
Quite simply, we refuse, on mass, to complete the census returns. This could get thousands supporting through social media promotion. It will produce devastating results for the CHCH statistics which incidentally are critical for analysis. Lets face it the publicity of this civil disobedience will totally destroy the credibility of CHCH statistics irrespective of how few actually participate. Mass prosecutions by NZ Govt are just not practical and will only incense others who support the cause to a lesser extent. Jail time would suit many fine, lets face it free food, real running toilets, no liquefaction sand, comfortable heating and lighting. A worth while accommodation upgrade for many. Could be very convenient while repairs are going on.
This person is obviously living in very poor conditions. I will stop grumping about mine!