Canterbury Earthquakes Royal Commission Te Komihana Rūwhenua o Waitaha Canterbury Earthquakes Royal Commission – Te Komihana Rūwhenua o Waitaha

Those who lost relatives and friends in the 22 February earthquake can be assured that there will be a very thorough inquiry into the failure of buildings that resulted in loss of life.
Chair, Justice Mark Cooper


                                                                                                                    4 November 2011


Quakes Royal Commission Releases ‘Stickering’ Information

The Canterbury Earthquakes Royal Commission today released five reports about the assessment of buildings after the Canterbury earthquakes, or ‘stickering’ or ‘placarding’.

‘Report into Building Safety Evaluation Processes in the Central Business District Following the 4 September 2010 Earthquake’ was prepared by the Christchurch City Council. It includes information about the building safety evaluation process the Council carried out following the 4 September 2010 earthquake up until the 22 February 2011 earthquake.

To assist the Council with its debrief processes following the 4 September earthquake, the Council requested Sisirc Consulting Ltd and McNulty Engineering Management Ltd to produce a report ‘Building Evaluation Transition Team – Processes Used and Lessons Learnt Following the Darfield Earthquake of 4 September 2010’. The report was not finalised and does not necessarily represent the Council’s view of its building evaluation processes following the 4 September earthquake or the legislation relating to these processes.

Two Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management reports have also been published. ‘The Civil Defence Emergency Management Framework and Response to the 22 February Christchurch Earthquake’ presents background information about the key principles and approach to civil defence emergency management in New Zealand. The other report ‘Independent Review of the Response to the Canterbury Earthquake, 4 September 2010’ was commissioned by the Ministry in response to the 4 September earthquake and was prepared by Richard Westlake of Westlake Consulting and David Middleton of Kestral Group.  A full review was not completed because the process was overtaken by the 22 February earthquake. The Ministry advises that a second larger independent review into the 22 February earthquake is about to commence and it will include the 4 September event.

New Zealand’s post-disaster building safety evaluation procedures have been developed by the New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering (NZSEE). ‘Building Safety Evaluation Following the Canterbury Earthquakes’ prepared by NZSEE for the Commission covers the effectiveness of the assessment of buildings following the Canterbury earthquakes on 4 September and 26 December 2010 and the legal and best practice requirements for the assessment of buildings after any earthquake, having regard to the lessons learned from the Canterbury earthquakes.

The deadline for submissions on issues raised in the reports (which are available on the Commission’s website) is 17 February 2012.

The Commission will conduct a public hearing in March 2012 in which it will consider evidence and submissions on building assessment after earthquakes (stickering/placarding). The exact date is to be confirmed but it will be after the CTV building hearing which is also scheduled to be held in March (this date is also to be confirmed).

Any stickering/placarding issues in relation to individual buildings whose collapse caused loss of life will be considered during those particular hearings.

The venue for all hearings will be the St Teresa church hall, on the corner of Riccarton Road and Puriri Street, Christchurch.


About the Canterbury Earthquakes Royal Commission

The Canterbury Earthquakes Royal Commission in Christchurch was established in response to the building failure and loss of life caused by the Canterbury earthquake in February 2011.

The purpose of the Commission is to examine issues around the built environment in the Christchurch central business district and to inquire into the adequacy of relevant building codes and standards into the future.

The Commission is required to provide the Governor-General with a final report by no later than April 2012.

For Further Information:

Robin Major
Senior Communications Advisor
Canterbury Earthquakes Royal Commission
Ph + 64 (0)3 741 3004 or + 64 (0)21 621 656