said no one in Canterbury, ever.
What a week of extremes. We have seen wind and floods, Ministerial apologies and community heart and leadership and collaboration and heartache and despair. Chaos is nothing if not exhausting.
We’ve also had a busy week on top of flood issues. In the Know was launched today so making sure everything was ready to go and people have been briefed has been a mammoth task from a big group of dedicated people (go Jo!)
EQC Chief Executive has also responded to our concerns regarding forced EQC so catch up on that letter and if you can help us, get in touch.
Find the 900 (soon to be renamed) is humming along at a mighty speed which means we can launch the details of that operation within the next few weeks. It would’ve been great to have had it up and running for the flood event but in the meantime, if you have flood related emergency repairs that need dealing with contact your insurer or ring Winter Make it Right on 0800 777 846
There is a wealth of information out there about emergency flood response so make sure you check out local networks and the CCC and CERA website for updates. We haven’t repeated it all in their newsletter because we have seen that the community networks have been well informed after this flood event with regard to emergency information.
Some insurers have put information about emergency flood related issues and claims on their websites and some have sent us additional information posted below. Have a read and make sure you contact your insurer for those urgent needs.
It has been wonderful to see the heroes doing the rounds in the community again – a sign that connectedness has not gone but rather was in hibernation until crisis awakened it again.
As always there are too many to name and some will be heroes to one family rather than an entire neighbourhood but one hero I want to acknowledge is Jason Notman – CERA Compliance and Security in the residential red zone. Jason waded waist deep through deepest darkest red zone Avonside to get to a gentleman who lives in his slice of paradise in an electric wheelchair. Because the caregiver had not been able to get through this poor fellow had not slept for two days prior to Jason’s visit. So Jason did what all good heroes do (after unsuccessfully trying to get the guy to evacuate) and lifted the man into his bed (thankfully the house was dry), tucking him in and telling him to have a sleep in before Jason’s return the next day.
It’s good to be reminded that just because people work for recovery agencies, it doesn’t mean they are not of this community and are not capable of great acts of kindness and care.
To all the heroes out there, a great big ‘cheers’ to you.
Flood – help offered and help needed
Student Volunteer Army
Hello Christchurch. The SVA is here to help! If you or if you know someone who needs assistance after the flooding, whether that be shifting house, cleaning up water damaged homes, or food etc, then please leave a message via their assistance form here or via Facebook here.
They have a team on stand by ready to help! They will need the location and a contact number. Stay strong and the SVA is on their way!
Flockton residents have an URGENT request for lots of plastic storage boxes with lids. Many are packing up and leaving and cardboard boxes don’t work in the wet!
Please take them directly to 26 Carrick St where they can be used by the many residents in need.
If you’re a baker and would like to bring some sweetness into a flooded families day, check out the Baking Army’s Facebook page for drop off points – here
Insurer information – flood claims
CanCERN asked Insurance Council to ask insurers to give us information regarding how people with unsettled earthquake claims should proceed with flood claims if they have them. The following are responses that have come back to us:
Any AA Insurance customers affected by the severe storm weather and flooding should contact us as soon as possible, especially if they need emergency repairs to keep their home watertight and warm.
For customers who have over-cap claims with us, we will review their schedule and prioritise them as much as possible, especially if they are elderly or vulnerable and given that future flooding may reoccur.
For customers who have under-cap claims with EQC, they should still contact us if there is any damage and emergency repairs may be required.
We’re in touch with some of our customers already. If you find out about any that are at risk, please call or email me immediately.
Our case managers are calling around, especially those customers we know might be affected but let us know if you hear of any urgent cases.
We’ll work with them individually.
Southern Response response
If your home is leaking due to earthquake damage, please minimise the impact as much as possible and contact your claim specialist or team. See team contact details below. Our business hours are between 8.30am – 5.00pm Monday and Friday.
If roof or cladding material has been blown off from the severe winds, you have damage as a result of loss of power or other storm related damage, this will be a claim against your AMI policy. Please contact AMI on 0800 100 200.
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In The Know initiative keeping the community informed
It has been slow and it’s been referred to as Community Questions and Issues but it has been sped up, improved and is a far more user-friendly, resident-friendly tool. Introducing
Media release – 07 March 2014
The launch of a new community-driven assistance website has been applauded by Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority chief executive Roger Sutton.
Called In the Know, the new site is a question-and-answer based service that aims to make it easier and faster for residents to get information about the residential rebuild and repair process. Instead of having to go to different websites to find information, residents can ask their question once, and access the answer from one site.
“There was a forerunner to In the Know which was hosted on CERA’s Canterbury Residential Rebuild website and CanCERN’s website. Now that it’s been up and running for more than a year we’re relaunching the service to help boost awareness about it and what it can offer,” Mr Sutton says.
“The service has a new look and a website that’s much easier to use. It’s a useful resource for residents and I’m really pleased that CERA is supporting this community-led initiative.”
The community representatives involved in the development and implementation of In the Know include: Brian Parker and Leanne Curtis from CanCERN; Bob Henderson, community worker; Chris Greengrass, Waimakariri; Nicki Goss, Manager – Earthquake Support Coordination Service; Carmel Jaggar from the TC3 Group; Linda Rutland, Port Hills; and Helen Gatonyi from the Tenants Protection Association.
This group review the questions before they are sent to the various recovery agencies to provide answers. CERA’s role is to administer the website.
Recovery agencies that are working together to provide answers to residents’ questions include insurers, government and local government agencies and banks.
Brian Parker from CanCERN says that the collaboration between community groups and recovery agencies better enables communications to address the specific needs of the residents with clear and consistent information on the rebuild that can help them make informed decisions.
“When it comes down to it, many residents are asking the same sorts of questions, so we’re bringing together information from a range of agencies and making it available in one place. Our hope is that In The Know will make it easier for people to find what they need.”
In The Know can be found online at www.intheknow.org.nz
Land with an increased risk of flooding – EQC Update
EQC have updated their website – 6 March 2014. You can see the original post here
What is Increased Flooding Vulnerability?
Increased Flooding Vulnerability (IFV) is a type of land damage covered by EQC. In some parts of Christchurch the earthquakes caused changes to residential land and/or to rivers and estuaries that mean some houses are now at risk of flooding where previously they were not and some are now at greater risk of flooding. It is important to remember, Christchurch is a flat, low-lying city and there have always been areas prone to flooding.
- has gathered topographical information using LiDAR surveys, which involved the scanning of the ground surface from an aircraft after each major earthquake – completed
- has modelled the river flow for the Styx, Avon and Heathcote rivers – completed
- is modelling the overland flow (the effects of rainfall) for the catchment areas for the Styx, Avon and Heathcote rivers – to be completed in May 2014
Both the river flow and overland flow models are required to establish whether a property is now more vulnerable to flooding.
Once all flood modelling is complete in May, EQC will advise all affected property owners of the next steps in settling their land claim.
Some of the properties involved will fall within the Christchurch City Council’s existing flood management areas (FMAs) , while other are outside the FMA boundaries (though we understand that CCC is in the process of reviewing these boundaries).
Properties on hold due to potential increased Flooding Risk
There are 309 properties currently on hold within the Canterbury Home Repair Programme (CHRP) because the property has been identified as potentially having IFV land damage when some of the modelling results have become available. EQC has contacted all 309 customers to arrange to reassess these properties to confirm that all damage to the dwelling has been accurately determined. It has been able to reassess 285 of them. EQC is planning to contact these reassessed customers to:
- Explain the reason that their property was placed on hold within the CHRP programme and to advise the timeframe for confirming their land damage.
- Offer them a choice about whether they would like to:
- Have their property repaired through the CHRP programme ahead of the confirmation of their land damage.
- Receive a cash settlement and manage their own repairs.
- Remain on hold within the CHRP programme until such time as their land damage has been confirmed and they can make a more informed choice.
EQC has agreed a joint approach to talk to flood prone communities together with other agencies in the Canterbury recovery.
Land with an increased risk of liquefaction
EQC have updated their website – 6 March 2014. You can see the original source here
What is Increased Liquefaction Vulnerability?
In some areas of Canterbury the ground surface has subsided due to the earthquakes yet the groundwater table has typically remained at a constant level. Therefore the ground surface is closer to the groundwater table than prior to the earthquakes. This generally reduces the non-liquefying ground crust thickness. As a result, there has been an increase in the future vulnerability to the liquefaction hazard of some sites.
In order to identify these properties EQC:
- has completed more than 11,000 geotechnical investigations to better understand the sub-surface soil conditions
- has been monitoring the groundwater table levels at more than 1,000 locations
- has gathered topographical information using LiDAR, which involved the scanning of the ground surface from an aircraft after each major earthquake
- has monitored the strength of the shaking using a network of sensors
EQC’s engineers are presently analysing this data to confirm which properties qualify for this type of land damage. Once confirmed EQC will then send homeowners a letter explaining the next steps.
EQC is also working with other agencies and insurers to pilot a number of land repair methods. The outcome of the pilot will inform EQC’s approach to the settlement of properties with ILV.
EQC is aiming to settle all land claims by the end of 2014, including those properties with ILV.
Seismics and the City Forum – Building Momentum
On behalf of the sponsors and supporters I would like to invite your colleagues and associates to register for the third annual Seismics and the City Forum Building Momentum to be held at the new Rydges Latimer, Christchurch on Friday 28 March.
By mentioning CanCERN when registering they will qualify for the special community discount of 50% off the group rate. Register online now.
The event commences with a networking breakfast followed by local and central government, business and media perspectives on Canterbury’s post quake recovery and rebuild. See outline below or visit Seismics and the City.
This event will be the third forum in an annual series involving public, private and community sector organisations engaged in the re-building and revitalization of Greater Christchurch in the wake of the earthquakes of 2010-11.
With the rebuild ramping up Seismics and the City 2014 is a timely opportunity for representatives of public, private and community organisations to update themselves regarding latest developments, provide feedback and input, share visions, air strategies and network with purpose.
Representatives of public and private sector and community organisations already involved or keen to be engaged in the post quakes rebuild and renewal of Greater Christchurch.
Design, engineering, construction and related organisations and their partners, suppliers and professional advisers interested in pursuing collaborative business opportunities arising from the scale and the quickening pace of the rebuild.
Representatives of innovative Christchurch business organisations interested in networking with purpose in the pursuit of new domestic or export focused opportunities.
Out of the region board members and senior managers interested in upgrading their own organisation’s business disruption planning by learning from Canterbury’s seismic experiences and recovery.
The science community, especially those involved in natural hazards research and the physical, social, economic and cultural dimensions of major events.
Get involved in the District Plan Review
From CCC Website – here
The District Plan touches on everyone in the community. As the Council drafts the new district plan we need to weigh up a raft of issues and competing demands. That’s where you can help. We want to know what’s important to you now and in the future. It’s your district – where you live and work. We want to know what you are thinking about our city’s future.
We invite you to get involved
District plan matters are not just for the Council to consider; they touch on the lives and futures of everyone across the city and Banks Peninsula. We’d like to understand what’s important to Christchurch people about the district plan.
Over the next three years we invite you to be part of an ongoing conversation to help in reviewing the plan. You can be involved at one of our community drop-in sessions or presentations around the city or online.
Lyttelton drop-in centre
We want your feedback on the first round of draft Chapters now
Our planners have prepared drafts for the first round of Chapters of the District Plan Review. We want to hear from you now, as your input could shape how the new District Plan looks.
Let us know what you are thinking
Email our planners at firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know what you are thinking about the draft Chapters – remember to mention what Chapter, Zone Map or other reference you are providing feedback about.
You can also take part in our online survey. Please note if you are inputting the url for the online survey directly into your phone or computer make sure you include the following www.surveymonkey.com/s/B5HGS7S (take care to include all the characters in the correct order).
Come along and speak to the planners working on the District Plan Review and find out more. The schedule of community meetings in areas close to key activity centres or areas where we are considering new growth or development.
The formal submission process
More information about the timing of the formal submission process will be available soon.
Find out more about Natural Hazards – Saturday 15 March
Come along to ‘Our changing environment – the risks and challenges of living with natural hazards’ free community forum.
Join us for a close look at the issues and risks around natural hazards in Christchurch.
Planning now for the long-term and building resilient communities is critical to meeting the challenges of our changing environment. Topics include flooding, sea level rise, liquefaction and land instability in the Port Hills.
When: Saturday 15 March 9.30am–4.30pm
Where: Salvation Army Hall, 250 Colombo Street, Sydenham
Come and hear directly from experts in their field, or drop-in anytime to talk about the issues we are facing.
|9.30am–10.30am and 1pm–2pm||Natural Hazards Overview|
|10.30am–11.30pm and 2pm–3pm||Land Instability Session One: The science and the response|
|11.30pm–12.30pm and 3pm–4pm||Land Instability Session Two: The District Plan Review|
|10.30am–11.30pm and 2pm–3pm||Flooding Session One: Flooding in Christchurch and beyond|
|11.30pm–12.30pm and 3pm–4pm||Flooding Session Two: The District Plan Review|
The content is the same in the morning and afternoon.
For more information
Some FAQs about the forum.
Phone: 941 8999 or 0800 800 169 . Email: email@example.com
Forced EQC Cash Settlements – Ian Simpson Responds
CanCERN recently spoke with EQC’s Chief Executive’s office about our concerns regarding cases where people may have been forced or perceive they have been forced to cash settle with EQC ($15-100k) instead of entering the Canterbury Home Repair Programme. We also asked for clarification on EQC’s policy regarding reimbursement of claimant’s costs for expert investigations or reports.
Mr Simpson has responded swiftly accurately reflecting the points we raised and hoped that CanCERN will be reassured that,
“during discussions at the December 2013 meeting of the EQC Board, EQC management confirmed that “in no circumstance will a customer who has been waiting 3 years for a managed repair be cash settled (unless the customer agrees)”.”
Mr Simpson also voiced his own concern about what we had raised and offered us an opportunity to present evidence of such practices to his office.
“I was concerned to hear that there is a perception in Canterbury that some EQC staff may be putting pressure on claimants to accept a cash settlement when the claimant would actually prefer the managed repair option. I would be even more concerned if hard evidence of such actions by any EQC staff member was produced. If, after reading this letter, you are able to assist by providing such evidence and still wish to pursue this concern, please do not hesitate to contact my office again.”
Obviously CanCERN is extremely keen to follow up on this opportunity as we know the evidence is around.
If your settlement was between $15-100k and you are in one of the following categories we would like to hear from you asap:
- you believe you have been forced to cash settle with EQC and you have evidence to prove it (emails, letters, reports, etc)
- you believe you have been intimidated or coerced into accepting a cash settlement
You can leave your contact details in the comment box below (which won’t be published), email Leanne at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone me on 0276555665 and I will get back to you. Please note that what we need is hard evidence rather than anecdotal experiences. If you know of others who may want to share their evidence with CanCERN, please pass this message onto them. We will discuss confidentiality when we make contact with you.
If you would like to read the full response please click here – Letter to Leanne Curtis – Cancern – 03.03.2014
With regard to the position EQC has on reimbursing expert investigations costs (which people have been asked to do if they challenge the cash settlement amount), Mr Simpson says the following,
“We do, on occasion, reimburse claimants for the cost of expert investigations or reports. EQC’s policy on such reimbursements is represented as follows. lf a customer wishes to challenge a settlement decision made by EQC, EQC will not, as a matter of course, meet the cost of any expert investigations or reports obtained by the customer for this purpose. EQC will, however, consider requests for reimbursement from customers on a case by case basis, in accordance with this and any other reimbursement policy it may have in place.
As a minimum before agreeing to reimburse a customer, EQC would first need to accept that the customer’s report had shown that there were material inaccuracies or omissions in EQC’s assessment that have disadvantaged that customer, and that the costs incurred by the customer are reasonable in the circumstances.”
CanCERN has been highly critical of EQC and of Mr Simpson himself. On this occasion the engagement we have had with Mr Simpson’s office has been outstanding and we expect to be able to continue to explore what is happening with cash settlements with the same level of success – credit where credit is due./************ get tags and categories ****************/ ?>