Police Call For Army In Quake Stricken Christchurch

According to Keith Lynch writing for The Press police had to call for support from the army in quake stricken Christchurch on Saturday night.

A number of people went to extraordinary lengths to enter a cordon that had been set-up at the Manchester St-Hereford St corner:

“Senior Sergeant Gordon Spite said police arrested seven people for breaching the Manchester St-Hereford St corner cordon…

“It beggars belief and takes us away from other duties. It’s a complete waste of police time,” he said.The problem was so bad police asked for army assistance to stop people entering the area, Spite said.

All seven people had been drinking and Spite warned that people who breached the city’s cordon could expect to be arrested.

Police also saw other people within the cordon area on Friday night, but they had escaped officers.

It was very quiet on Friday night, with only “one or two arrests”, Spite said…”

6,000 Homes Seriously Damaged, Looting Continuing

2,737 homes were rendered uninhabitable by the quake on 4 September and another 3053 were made  not weatherproof.

The earthquake commission is struggling to deal with the number of claims (62,015) that have been submitted and are saying it could take months to settle them all (source)

A report in The Star says that almost two weeks after the quake many residents  were feeling scared and vulnerable in their own homes as aftershocks continued to hit the city.

The Salvation Army set-up a trauma counselling service for quake victims,  Major Susan Reese said:

“A lot of people are feeling quite anxious and they can’t relax as they have no way of knowing when it is going to be over.”

The Salvation Army trauma line had fielded about 200 calls each day since it was set up.

Maj Reese, who has worked as a counsellor for 30 years and helped in the aftermath of the Victorian bush fires, said many just needed a chance to talk about what they were going through but some needed to be referred to more formal counselling as they had severe trauma.

There was also debriefing and counselling set up for the counsellors themselves… “more here

Meanwhile, stories about looting continue to trickle out in the media.

The Star also reported on a family who survived swine flu and the quake, only to lose valuable possessions, survival kits, money and the family car to looters who raided their home.  Read about the Halls here