New Zealand’s carefully honed image of being a safe country has taken another blow after the savage beating of cricketer Jesse Ryder.
Ryder was left with a fractured skull, punctured lung and internal bleeding after a frenzied attack by four men on a Christchurch street. Ryder was due to fly out tomorrow to start a $NZ300,000 contract with the Indian Premier League.
According to a report in the NZ Herald Ryder was attacked from behind outside Aikman’s Bar on Papanui Road, Merivale.
Radio New Zealand reported he was in a coma. His condition was critical.
A witness, who only wanted to be known as Adam, told Fairfax Media that Ryder had his shirt ripped off his back and was on the ground as four men kicked and punched him outside the bar.
Ryder was lying in a bush “shaking, vomiting and covered in blood” in the carpark of McDonald’s, which was across the road from the bar.
Adam, who was drinking at the bar, said the brawl broke out behind him.
“From what I could tell it looked pretty unprovoked,” he said.
Four men started punching Ryder in the bar’s courtyard and the fight was quickly pushed out on to the street.”Four dudes were just laying into him and absolutely smashing him on the ground. His shirt was ripped off and they were kicking him and punching him while he was down.” more here
a 20 year old man and an out of town male relative, age 37, have been arrested. Neighbours saw a man led away in handcuffs from a home in Barbadoes Street on Thursday evening, just hours after the attack.
British Cricket Team Victims of Theft in Auckland
Continuing with cricket and sporting news, it has emerged that three members of the British touring cricket team were victims of theft whilst staying at the Pullman Hotel on Waterloo Quadrant, Auckland on Sunday night.
Police are looking for a man who was pictured leaving the “plush hotel” with the unnamed cricketers’ gold clubs which had been left in an unsecured storage room. A doorman, who is reportedly not a suspect, helped him carry the golf bag out of the door in the early hours of the morning. The theft was noticed when the team’s luggage was loaded up for the flight out. For more click here.
The team has already left New Zealand and are unlikely to be as lucky as the member of the US rowing team at Lake Karapiro who had their stolen possessions returned minutes before leaving New Zealand. For more read US Rowing Team Member Robbed, World Rowing Championships 2010.
South African reporters covering the Rugby World Cup weren’t that fortunate. Christiaan Kotze and Barry Aldworth lost R60 000 worth of equipment after South Africa’s games against Samoa at North Harbour stadium. Neither were SuperSport journalists Brenden Nel and Gavin Rich, when their car was broken into at a parking lot at an Auckland hotel.
- Test cricketer’s skull ‘smashed’ (theage.com.au)
- National Sport: NZ cricket offer support to Ryder (birminghampost.net)
- New Zealand cricket star Jesse Ryder in critical condition after bar attack (metro.co.uk)
Last month an inquest was held in Britain into the death of young rugby player Tom Sewell.
Five years ago Tom Sewell started his first day of a working holiday in New Zeaalnd and was killed whilst riding a quad bike on a farm in Katikati, on the North Island.
It’s sad that it has taken this long for the coroner to reach a judgement about accidental death but when he did it was pretty damning and another nail in the coffin for NZ’s reputation for taking safety seriously.
There have been 37 deaths in quad bike accidents since 2008 and 3 since Boxing Day last year (source) Chief coroner Neil MacLean is said to be “frustrated by the large number of quad bike deaths around the country.”
We’ve blogged many times about the high numbers of deaths, serious injuries and near misses in New Zealand’s tourism industry, the egregious lack of safety awareness and attitudes that can be best described as “she’ll be right”. Read posts tagged Adventure tourism or see our adventure tourism and safety Wiki for further details.
A report into the inquest by Getsurrey.co.uk showed how both the NZ and UK coroners highlighted a serious lack of duty of care and health and safety awareness at the farm. What they found has wider implications for workplace health and safety, and the whole of the tourism industry in New Zealand, especially working holiday providers.
“Mr Travers explained there were no written instructions and no crash helmets, which he said would indicate problems with health and safety.
At the first inquest into Tom’s death, held in New Zealand in November 2009, nine recommendations were made by the chief coroner, which Mr Travers has agreed to support following his findings.
Among the nine were recommendations for a clear written policy on the use of all-terrain vehicles and that helmets should be worn when driving these vehicles.
He added that when employees were working in orchards, there should be supervision and a nominated person responsible for the health and safety of workers.
In addition, visitors and potential employees should not be permitted to start work without a health and safety induction and a proper introduction to the site.
Tom’s father thinks it is clear that health and safety in New Zealand needs to be assessed…” read more here
The report went on to mention a number of tourist deaths in New Zealand, all of which we’ve covered in this blog in the past, saying
Tom’s death is just one of many tragedies involving Britons taking gap year visits to New Zealand.
The mother of Sarah Bond spoke about New Zealand’s “she’ll be right” attitude,
What underpins all of this is the lack of safety and lack of care out there,” said her mother, Elizabeth Bond. “It feels like ‘accidents happen’ is their mantra.”
Enough is Enough
Now a group of 200 international families have decided enough is enough and are campaigning for a tightening up of New Zealand’s perceived lax safety standards. This is probably a continuation of the campaign that was started in 2010 by the families of British tourists Emily Jordan, Sarah Bond and Tom Sewell .
Furthermore, the majority of the NZ public agree with them that something must be done because it’s not just international tourists that are suffering.
There have also been other New Zealand deaths, not least the tragic deaths of student Catherine Peters, the 6 highschool students and a teacher who died in a canyoning exercise with the Sir Edmund Hilary Outdoor Centre and the Kiwis who were killed in the Fox Glacier plane crash (9 dead) and the Carterton hot air balloon disaster (11 dead)
From an article in the NZ Herald we learn that Tom Sewell’s mother had contacted her former MP, Sir Humfrey Malins who had
“written to the NZ High Commissioner in London two years ago on the family’s behalf expressing concern – but had not received a response.
Linda said that silence was “very disappointing”. The family would now be writing to Key, asking him to adopt the UK Coroner’s safety recommendations.
The international letter-writing campaign to draw attention to New Zealand health and safety problems is spearheaded by two other British dads: Chris Coker, who lost his son Brad in the Fox Glacier plane crash, and Chris Jordan, who lost his daughter Emily Jordan in a riverboarding tragedy. Chris Coker has set up a website to warn people about the risks in New Zealand.
Brad would have turned 27 tomorrow. “I couldn’t go to work for nearly a year and now I go to work and see an empty chair,” he said. “Why is it my job as a grieving parent to fight the terrible injustice of my son’s death because it was preventable?”… more here
We wish them all the best with helping to improve safety in New Zealand, it’s not an easy task given the degree of under-regulation of safety in the country.
In the meantime and until such time as things have improved, if you, or a family member, is planning an adventure tourism or working holiday in New Zealand perhaps you should consider somewhere with higher standards and where safety is regulated properly.
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NZ workplace safety a ‘national disgrace’ – consultant (NZ Herald Jan 2013) “New Zealand’s health and safety record has been labelled as ‘woeful’ and a ‘national disgrace’ by a consultant with two decades’ experience in the sector…Robyn Levinge says New Zealand has never prioritised health and safety like it has with road safety, domestic violence and drink driving…”As a country, we have simply not given health and safety the priority it deserves at any level…”
One Way Ticket (60 minutes TV, Oct 2012) “Every year, thousands of young Australians fly off for a gap year adventure. Their travels take them all over the world, often to poor and dangerous places that make their mums and dads fret…But the world capital of adventure tourism can be a deadly place as Glenn (Bourke) and eight others so tragically discovered…”
New Zealand Adrenaline Nation (ABC News, Oct 2012)”not everyone walks away from an adventure tourism experience in New Zealand. Over the past eight years at least 50 visitors have died when things went dreadfully wrong. Many more have suffered crippling injuries…In a forensic examination of New Zealand’s adventure tourism industry and safety regime, correspondent Dominique Schwartz exposes significant flaws in regulation and safety awareness. She investigates the activities of a prominent ballooning operator with a troubling track record and hears evidence that NZ’s taxpayer-funded accident compensation scheme (ACC) may be enabling poor practice.”
Man falls to his death whilst participating in team building fund day in Woodhill (NZ Police, March 2013)”A 57-year-old man fell to his death yesterday while attending a team building fun day at Treetops Adventures, Woodhill, Auckland. A Doctor and an Advanced Paramedic were participants on the course nearby and rushed to assist the man. He died at the scene as a result of his injuries. OSH attended the scene and are working closely with Treetop Adventures to investigate how the the fatality occurred.” The man was later named as Clifford Brabet. People at the park voiced concerns about safety and overcrowding before the fall.
Australian Tourist Injured In Bungy Accident, Another Has Collapsed Lung – Updated (May 2010)
Another Tourist Dies in New Zealand – Trainee Doctor Tom Donaldson killed at sand dunes (Feb 2009)
- Furious parents lash PM (nzherald.co.nz)
An ex-police officer has criticised the judicial system in New Zealand after a Kiwi judge discharged a sportswoman from a DUI charge and gave her permanent name suppression.
The sportswoman, who had twice the adult legal amount of alcohol in her system when caught drink driving, was given name suppression partly because of the effect a DUI rap would have on her ability to compete abroad.
Today the Herald published an interview with a “long serving traffic officer” ex policeman Stu Kearns, who headed the Waitemata serious crash unit. He told the paper that the decision undermined the police’s efforts to control drink driving, saying
“It’s absolute bollocks … it just beggars belief,” he said. “From what has been reported, it is disgusting. It’s a mockery, and it makes the job of the police a lot harder. People the police process for drink driving now will say, ‘Oh well, that athlete got off’, and think they can too.
“The police did their job, brought this person before the courts and they were let down by the system and a weak judge. It’s pathetic.” read more here
Police are currently seeking legal advice on whether they can appeal the court’s decision.
According to the NZTA youth drink-driving is one of the largest causes of death and injuries in New Zealand roads. Each year, young drivers cause nearly half of all alcohol-related road crashes.
Last week an Auckland barrister, Satendra Prakesh Singh, was banned from driving for six months and fined after pleading guilty to drink driving after he was involved in a road crash. He had 144mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood – nearly twice the legal limit. He tried, unsuccessfully, to apply for name suppression.
The disparity between that judgement, and previous name suppression cases, is bound to lead to accusations that New Zealand has a two-tier legal system where sporting and media personalities who are likely to travel abroad receive clemency that is denied to others.
For more read posts tagged name suppression.
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Drink drive girl, 13, crashes stolen car – youngest DUI this year caught in Penrose, Auckland
Continuing in our series of Migrant Tales, first hand accounts of the migrant experience of New Zealand.
Today’s tale forms the first part of an exciting new series by a guest author. If you have a tale you’d like to share with us please leave your submission in The Agora, along with instructions for how you’d like it presented.
In Part One of Retardicon 6 British migrant ‘Escapee’ tells the unwary reader of the pitfalls of owning property in New Zealand, specifically that most unique of New Zealand problems – the leaky home and of the shockingly poor construction standards of the average Kiwi home.
Retardicon 6 (part 1)
Five years ago my wife and I moved fromto Retardicon 6 (you might know this loathsome place as New Zealand – we know better). We arrived on 2007. We arrived back – blessedly – in the on Christmas day 2012. Our story isn’t the tragedy you find in other posts on this site in as much as we were never trapped by this sly, dirty, back-stabbing society of inbreds and they weren’t able to drain every last cent of our capital from us, as is their intention with all immigrants – au contraire, Rodney. We have in fact brought a nice chunk of their capital back home with us. But I can confirm the nightmare that everyone here posts about.
I first moved to Retardicon 6 late in 1990 with my first wife. I have to say that my experience back then was good. I lived in a smart area of Auckland’s North Shore – Campbell’s Bay, with a house overlooking the. I won’t bore you with the usual tales of boating and fun, just say that I enjoyed it while constantly being aware of how isolated it is down there. And if you are one of those people who thinks that the world has shrunk and everywhere is just a plane ride away, I’m going to laugh right in your face. Until you’ve faced the prospect of making long-haul journeys on a regular basis, you have no idea. England to or Florida don’t count. Mere bus rides by comparison. Since I have to be in two or three times a year, and England once a year, I can tell you how isolated Retardicon 6 is, and how soul-destroying travelling ANYWHERE from there is (except Sydney or Melbourne, perhaps). If you find yourself in a position where the pennies count (as many who come down here quickly do) you will really feel the psychologically depressing sense of isolation, especially if you have left loved ones behind. If anything were to happen to them, it’s not a simple matter of getting in a car and going round to see them. Not even a quick one-hour hop from Spain or France. By the time you’ve arranged a flight – if you can afford it – it’s going to be the best part of a week before you are back, frantic with worry the whole time. By then it might be too late. Good luck if you watch a lot of television and think you can get on a plane the same day. You MIGHT be lucky, if you can stretch to a business-class ticket. Even then, door to door, your travelling time is going to be over 36 hours. Yes it is – time in the air is going to be at LEAST 24 hours, but it’s not just the time in the air. It’s getting to and from airports at each end, having to be there 3 hours in advance of the flight time, a MINIMUM of two hours at each stop on the way. Unless you fly (via Los Angeles) you’ll have more than one stop, and each of those stops will definitely be more than two hours. Add it up for yourself. And imagine going through it when you are frantic with worry.
Back to the narrative though. My first wife and I split up, and I met and married my current wife, a Kiwi girl, in 1996. A few months later, we emigrated back from there to England. She was desperate to leave and I could never quite work out why. We had eleven mostly lovely years in England, but in 2004 we sensed that England was living in an economic bubble and that while Retardicon’s economy was backward by comparison, it was relatively stable. In particular, Auckland’s property market was inflating steadily, driven by demand. So we decided to park some of our capital there. I went back to Retardicon early in 2005 and bought four houses in Auckland, which we put into the hands of a property management agent, attached to one of the major real estate agents. This is where we should have started to smell a rat about this vile little country. Several times, after I got back to England, I had the management company call me telling me of problems with one or other of these properties that needed attending to. And the prices quoted for fixing these issues seemed exhorbitant to say the least. The final straw came when an estimate for fixing what was a simple issue came in at $6,700. Luckily, we had my wife’s father to call on and he went to look at it, got a builder he knew to go with him, and the actual price for the fix came in at $650. YES, a tenth of the gouging criminally inflated quote from the management agent and what was obviously a crony builder of hers. I wonder how much inflated profit they have shared over the years…
In 2007, in a fit of madness, I persuaded my reluctant Kiwi wife that we should leave England and go back to Retardicon 6, to have a couple of years there, then realise our assets. If only she’d hit me over the head with a hammer and brought me back to my senses. But she didn’t, God bless her. And as I say, we arrived in Retardicon 6 on Christmas Day, 2007.
Our intention was to cash in on the profit we’d made on the houses I’d bought, taking our time to do it, and enjoying our time there in the meantime. It didn’t work out like that though. Not a bit of it. The first months were spent sorting out various problems with our properties that the management agents (lazy and arrogant beyond belief – traits we were going to discover to be the norm among Kiwis) hadn’t addressed or even ever told us about. We just got everything ready to start putting them up for sale in late 2008 when the credit crisis hit. Disappointing, but we’d sit tight and sell once things had righted themselves. Auckland, to be fair, didn’t dip as much as most of the rest of the world. But we know better than to sell in a buyers market – which is what it had become. And thus began five years of misery.
We decided to stay until things started to look up financially, and look after our properties ourselves. Our first contact with the disgusting, sly, cunning kiwi way came when we wanted work doing on some of our properties. NOT ONE SINGLEwould give us a final price for doing the job. They’d all tell you what needed doing (and this differed – sometimes wildly – from contractor to contractor) but even when pressed, none of them would give us a price. This is astonishing, coming from England where we are used to contractors assessing the job and quoting you on how much it would cost to do. What the gouging, sly, cunning kiwis did was tell us that they wouldn’t know the final cost until the job was underway and they could assess how much time/materials were going to be involved. We soon discovered the kiwi that this is the kiwi way. No job has a uniform price – the lousy and often unqualified (at anything) kiwi “builder” is sizing up how much he reckons he can rake out of you. I put builder in quotes just then because the very best kiwi builder is less skilled than a toddler with a box of Leggo. And this country has the brass neck NOT to recognise building qualifications from other countries. There is one reason for this, and one reason only; they are frightened to death of immigrants coming in and showing them up. No joke, this is true.
Not long after we arrived, we learned of Leaky Home Syndrome. Apparantly, almost all the homes built by these “chimps with hammers” (otherwise known as New Zealand Master Builders) in the 1990s and early 2000s suffer from this. And no, no need to scratch your head wondering what this is; it’s exactly as it sounds. These houses LEAK and because they are all built using wooden frames, they ROT FROM THE INSIDE!!! Can you believe that? Kiwi houses ship water (and boy, does it rain in that God-forsaken hole) by the bucket. Cost of repair is often the same as building a new house!
The houses affected for the most part were those built with some form of cladding over the timber frame. We owned one such house, but luckily ours wasn’t officially a Leaky Home. Which is not to say it didn’t suffer from leaks here and there. You have to understand that the odd dribble of water coming into your house now and again is considered normal in Retardicon 6. I have heard New Zealand houses described as “Wooden Framed Tents.” This is true. They are utterly unsanitary to live in. Cold and damp beyond belief. I have never, ever ever anywhere else in the world encountered mold growing on the walls and ceilings of a LIVING ROOM (not just the bathroom) but this is common in the houses of Retardicon 6. Not just the odd spore either. Whole patches of black mold appearing. The damp is all-pervasive. No wonder kiwi inbreds have a higher incidence of respiratory complaints than anywhere I have ever been.
Don’t be fooled by the fact that Auckland winter temperatures seem mild; the pervasive damp WILL KILL YOU. 12 degrees C in the insanitary Auckland damp will chill you to your bones. We’ve just enjoyed a couple of weeks of lovely snow and ice here in England, with sub-zero temperatures. But it was dry, and outside with my dogs it didn’t feel anything like as cold as being indoors during an Auckland winter does. Of course, those of you who’ve set your hearts on emigrating to Retardicon 6 will discount this. You won’t believe it. Right up until that first damp cold day you encounter. By which time it will be too late for you and your family as you huddle around the calor gas, fume-emitting heater. No such thing as central heating in Retardicon 6. There is a plethora of heat pumps that the gouging thieves will fit for you at an inflated price, but at best they’ll only take the chill out of the re-circulated air. They won’t heat your home.
When we came to sell the one house we had that was constructed in using cladding, we got to see just what kiwi building construction consists of. We had to have a piece of interior plasterboard removed from inside the integral garage so that some of the rotting timber frame could be replaced. I also got to see that the house, like all kiwi rubbish homes hadn’t been built on a foundation worthy of the name! The house consisted of a timber frame with plasterboard sheets pinned to the inside of the frame, forming the interior wall, and some sort of cladding just a couple of millimetres thick pinned to the exterior. No insulation in between. NOW can you see why these houses are all horribly damp and cold? Even the much-vaunted “kiwi weatherboard” house is no better. Timber frame with plasterboard on the inside, and very thin (often Cedar) overlapping planks (weatherboards) on the outside. Following the Leaky Home debacle, this traditional weatherboard home was held in great store. But they are just as cold and damp as the newer builds. I’ve owned both types so I do know this. For the record, weatherboard homes don’t have to be built in such a shoddy “she’ll be right” cheap, unfit for purpose fashion. You’ll see weatherboard houses all over the United States and Australia, and these homes are different animals altogether. Sealed, warm, dry, cosy, insulated. It’s not that it can’t be done; it’s just that lazy, arrogant, cheap, grasping, unskilled kiwis can’t do it.
This is the end of part one of what will be a short series. In subsequent episodes, if the editor of this blog allows it, I’ll cover topics such as the inbred hypocrisy of kiwis, kiwi cowardice, kiwis and driving, kiwi arrogance, kiwi intellectual stupidity, kiwi racism – and more.
For God’s sake, think think and think again before ever committing to taking your family to this hell on earth, especially if you can’t afford to come back.
DON’T MAKE THE MISTAKE OF THINKING THAT NEW ZEALAND IS JUST THE SAME AS AUSTRALIA – IT’S FAR FROM IT!!!
If you can get into Australia – go there! It’s a wonderful country by comparison with Retardicon 6, and I can say that from experience. If you can’t get into Australia but can get into New Zealand, don’t kid yourself that New Zealand will be just as good. It won’t. And you will be consigning your family to a living hell.
Can you imagine parking up to eat your takeaway, having a kid point a gun at your head and being told
“Get out of the car bitch, we want the car!“
You’d think you’d were in some war torn country, or perhaps some developing nation where crime is the only way for kids to survive. But no, this happened south of Auckland, New Zealand and the youngest child in this threesome was only eight years old.
It followed another incident in the town’s CBD on 15 October. An elderly woman was sitting in the back seat of a parked car when a young opportunistic thief gave her the fright of her life.
The Herald published the story today, saying that the 57 year old car jacking victim was stopped in Franklin Road, Pukekohe, last Sunday night when a
“boy, carrying what was believed to be a plastic rifle, opened her driver’s side door and demanded she get out.
“He’s tried to take the keys from the ignition and said, ‘get out bitch’,” the spokeswoman said.
Another boy, thought to be 15 or 16, then opened her passenger door and repeated the demand: “Get out of the car bitch, we want the car.”
The spokeswoman said the teenager, who was standing next to another boy, snatched her handbag and ran away with it.
The victim chased him while the two other offenders got into her car.
The bag snatcher then “doubled back” and got into the car and the trio drove off… more here
Police have yet to find either her handbag or her car. Our condolences and good wishes go out to her and we hope the police find these tearaways who may’ve stolen her car to order.
The problem is the younger kids are probably too young to be dealt with by the criminal justice system and there’s every chance they will fall through the net and continue into an adulthood of crime.
Only a few weeks ago pressurised police were urging Pukekohe residents to report crime as soon as it happened to give them a better chance of solving it. Two days previously they’d issued an alert about door-knocking kids pretending to sell chocolate whilst sussing out which homes were unoccupied and easier to burgle. Fittingly, the chocolate had been stolen, from the town’s Pak ‘n Save supermarket.
Spate of Crime headlined by bank robbery
What have these kids got to aspire to other than becoming career criminals? Back at the start of October PC Borrell wrote in his column for the Franklin Country News
“There’s been a heap of crime in this past week. The big one was the aggravated robbery involving a sawn-off shotgun at the Pukekohe ANZ on Monday morning…
Pukekohe staff arrested a 17-year-old for an aggravated robbery last week at the vets.
Also this week, in the Pukekohe CBD at night, we have had a spike in burglaries and cars getting broken into.
We’re pleased to report the 17 year old vet burglar was caught but no news yet on the bank robbers. But police did score another victory. They managed to close down a meth lab when they searched a property in Karioitahi beach. A man and a woman from South Auckland were arrested.
The town is currently being plagued by a teenage ”night thief stalking the streets” in the northern suburb. He’s breaking into houses whilst the occupants are asleep and taking anything valuable he can grab. More here.
What else is there for youth to do in Pukekohe, a small semi-rural south of Auckland described in Wikipedia as “A service town for the area formerly known as the Franklin District” with a population of just 26,300. What will it take to break the circle of crime in small town New Zealand?
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