Immediately after this tragic event, people all around the world started checking with friends and family to see that they came through with their life. Still people in the South of New Zealand are sharing their experience
More than 20000 homes were without power, water & sewerage. Many of these families moved to friends’ houses on the west side of town or out of the city all together. Camping in tents, garages and spare rooms was the norm.
In Christchurch everyone has a story.
Phil Smith, Planit Reseller for New Zealand tells us of a conversation he remembered having with a work college, Brydon “Look Phil, I fair shit myself. I was in town when it happened. It was like nothing I’ve ever seen. The whole town was like a bomb had gone off. My family had to stay in Rangiora with friends while I had to stay at my place (in Brighton) each night. You’ve got no idea how much action there was on the street after dusk. The sun goes down and all the looters came out. It took more than a week before I could have my first shower!”
Brydons main concern after power was restored was to put more bracing on his home - More strengthening to protect his family in the next big one...
Another friend suggested to Phil “Just try and spend one day without power, water and your toilet. Then you’ll see what it’s really like…”
Known as liquefaction, approximately 250000 tonnes of silt has flooded the streets in the eastern side of the city. As with every aspect of the crisis, it’s been a case of mates helping mates, neighbors helping neighbors. Meeting people they would never otherwise have met. Together they have shoveled up an enormous amount of silt. A convoy of trucks have then collected the piles of silt which lined the streets. Traffic controllers at strategic intersections have been stopping regular traffic to allow these trucks right of way.
Many Phil have talked to in the industry say their business has been interrupted. Buildings they have cabinets built for have been red stickered (Condemned) Racks of sheet material have tipped over and damaged jobs in the factory. A 45 minute trip to work now takes 4 hours. For others, it's a case of getting back to routine as soon as practical. Generators are in great demand and there is still a shortage of three phase power.
Throughout the disaster, Christchurch’s mayor, Bob Parker has fronted the television cameras and kept the world up to date with facts, figures and the latest plan of action for search and rescue. When no survivors had been found for well over a week, the rescue efforts had been reclassified as a recovery effort.
50% of all historic buildings in the CBD are set to be demolished.
New Zealand Prime Minister, John Key called for two minutes on Tuesday at 12.51 pm, exactly 1 week after the event. It was a deeply emotional moment for every New Zealander as they stopped to reflect on the reality of the quake.
Story by Phil Smith, Planit Reseller, New Zealand. 5th March, 2011
Captured at the moment the Earthquake hit
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