Delta implicated in significant Saddle Hill fire (October 2015)

Channel 39 News:

Deputy editor Craig Page says tomorrow’s ODT carries “a really strong story”.

“We talked earlier about Delta being the story that keeps giving, and that’s the case”.

“We’ve got a group of seven Saddle Hill property owners who, we understand, are suing Delta for more than two million dollars, because they believe they were to blame for the fire back in 2015, quite a significant fire around Saddle Hill area, [with] something like ten buildings including garages damaged.

“They’re not saying too much about their claims but we understand it’s to do with mismanagement of some safety equipment in the power line there, branches fell on the lines which started the fire and some sort of switch shouldn’t have turned back on, but did…..”

News presenter Craig Storey: “We’ll see you in court.”

Craig Page: “Exactly.”

****

saddle-hill-fire-7-oct-2015-jsnnz-at-imgur-comSaddle Hill fire 7 Oct 2015 [JSNNZ at imgur.com]

TheManCave Published on Oct 6, 2015
Large fire on Saddle Hill Dunedin 2015
A large fire close to Dunedin city on Saddle Hill with multiple fire engines and helicopter with monsoon bucket, with very high winds fanning it and making it hard to get under control.

****

### ODT Online Wed, 14 Oct 2015
Saddle Hill fire warning to Taieri residents
By Timothy Brown
….The warning of a hot, dry El Nino summer and last week’s Saddle Hill blaze should remind all residents to prepare for the worst and be vigilant, Otago Rural Fire Authority deputy principal rural fire officer Graeme Still says. Nine structures – including two homes – were damaged by the blaze which swept through between 50ha and 100ha of land and put one woman in Dunedin Hospital with serious throat burns. “People need to just be aware,” Mr Still said. “Keep a bit of defensible space around their structures, especially living in the rural areas. Keep their lawns mowed and spouting clear of debris.” Those carrying out permitted burns needed to watch the fire danger and ensure their fires were out. […] The Saddle Hill fire now appeared to be under control, but firefighters would maintain a watch on it until the area received heavy rain.
Read more + Images

### ODT Online Thu, 28 July 2016
Saddle Hill fire ‘chaotic’ – review
By Shawn McAvinue
An operational review of the “erratic” Saddle Hill fire in Dunedin last year has revealed the first ground crews at the scene had to battle the blaze for more than two hours with “chaotic” communication, including cluttered radio channels, forcing many key decisions to be made by cellphone. A key finding of the review – undertaken by the Otago Rural Fire Authority (ORFA) and New Zealand Fire Service – was the communication between fire crews on the ground was compromised during the first hours of the fire. The crews were called to a fire in Morris Rd at 1.51pm on October 7 last year.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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Aurora Energy at ODT 24.2.17 follows #LGOIMA

Broad spectrum (?!) LGOIMA request from earlier this week and interim acknowledgement:

From: Elizabeth Kerr
Sent: Monday, 20 February 2017 7:24 PM
To: Grady Cameron
Cc: Elizabeth Kerr
Subject: Aurora Energy Ltd – Official Information Request (LGOIMA)

Attention Grady Cameron
Chief Executive, Aurora Energy Ltd

Dear Grady

How is Aurora Energy Ltd funding the $30million pole replacement programme you speak about – from capex (capital expenditure), opex (operational expenditure), a combination of the two? or by other means? (please state)

Will Aurora Energy Ltd attempt to raise line charges for Otago power consumers, to achieve the number of (dangerous) pole replacements required in the next 3-5 years – how soon will line charges increase and by how much given regulatory scrutiny by the Commerce Commission?*

Is Aurora Energy Ltd solvent at this time? Explain.

Please provide any financial detail(s) salient to these matters.

Sincerely

Elizabeth Kerr
Dunedin

*emphasis added 24.2.17

—————————————-

From: Grady Cameron
Sent: Wednesday, 22 February 2017 1:02 p.m.
To: Elizabeth Kerr
Subject: Aurora Energy Ltd – Official Information Request (LGOIMA)

Dear Elizabeth

Thank you for your enquiry. We acknowledge receipt of your official information request received by us on 21 February regarding Aurora Energy (our reference 0945).

We will endeavour to respond to your request as soon as possible and in any event no later than 21 March, being 20 working days after the day your request was received. If we are unable to respond to your request by then, we will notify you of an extension of that timeframe.

Kind regards,
Glenda

****

Received.
Fri, 24 Feb 2017 at 1:58 a.m.

[click to enlarge]

ODT 24.2.17 (page 4)

odt-24-2-17-aurora-planned-power-outages-p4

ODT 24.2.17 (page 5)

odt-24-2-17-aurora-energy-notification-of-electricity-delivery-prices-p5

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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DCC overlooks due process and Environment Court rulings for Mosgiel road hierarchy

Taieri Times / Otago Daily Times fails to understand or elaborate (no research!) the issues raised by local resident and business owner Brian Miller in his submission to the Transportation section of the proposed 2GP.

taieri-times-odt-22-2-17-residents-in-fight-for-riccarton-rd-p6

Mr Miller and his family have lived on Riccarton Rd for the last thirty years. In that time, variously, DCC have planned – and carried out supporting construction works – to enable Hagart-Alexander Dr (HAD) as an arterial route taking heavy vehicles ‘safely’; DCC have been to Environment Court on the matter, receiving clear rulings and sets of conditions bringing about these construction works; since then, however, DCC have formed the view – contrary to the Court rulings and agreed structure plans – that the arterial route should be Riccarton Rd, not HAD. Former city councillor and deputy mayor Sydney Brown has a residential subdivision to HAD.

Who is pulling whose chain here ?
DCC, in changing your minds, where is the due (fair and proper) process of public consultation ?

Are flicks of the pen all that DCC does now.

The Sin : City Planning, in its 2GP recommendations for the Taieri roading hierarchy fails to acknowledge legal determinations of the Environment Court of New Zealand and insodoing the council may be seen as INJUDICIOUS. Court rulings cannot be ignored holus-bolus to suit DCC fairyland futures for the Taieri.

[Sources at Dunedin say this is not the only case of DCC’s recent lack of regard for the Court.]

Further, to underline…. during the ‘Revised Planner’s Recommendations’ on February 10, the city planner was heard to say they regarded information presented in submission(s) as “old” – the strong inference being that Environment Court rulings do not count; or worse, that they had no idea any matters had, in fact, been to court. The City thus appears sunk on a problem of integrity, lawful or otherwise.

This situation simply would not arise if greater supervision and TRAINING was provided to salaried council underlings involved in 2GP processes. They must be fully cognisant of the history and implications of relevant legal rulings made in respect of council activities. That way they could see the trees for the wood when the likes of ex staff appear for ‘advice’ to hearing in trite bouncy-rat mode.

[The implications of contempt should perhaps be underscored instead of multiple teabreaks culture at the Civic Centre.]

Lastly, in god we trust…. the independent commissioners Messrs Collins and Rae are NO FOOLS.

WAKE UP DUNEDIN CITY COUNCIL, or
We The People will see you in Court.

[ends]

****

2GP Hearing Topic: Transportation
Hearing dates: February 1, 2, 3, 8
Revised Planner’s Recommendations: February 10 [● DCC to upload]
Commissioners: David Collins (Chair), Gary Rae, David Benson-Pope, Aaron Hawkins, Jinty MacTavish, Kate Wilson

THE SUBMISSION | Statement tabled at hearing

Note: Brian Miller gave his family trust’s 28-page submission (plus attachments) on the 2GP Transportation topic in the hearing of independent commissioners David Collins and Gary Rae, only. To avoid conflicts of interest, at Mr Miller’s request and with the Chair’s agreement, no councillor commissioners were present for the submission.

H180-421 BJ & AJ Miller family trust (PDF format)

In an email to Elizabeth Kerr (6.2.17), Brian Miller said: “Probably the most important part of our submission is point 3.3, pages 20 to 22.” :

[click to enlarge]
submission-h180-421-bj-aj-miller-family-trust-p20
submission-h180-421-bj-aj-miller-family-trust-p21-1
submission-h180-421-bj-aj-miller-family-trust-p22

****

[click to enlarge]
data-map-2gp-land-information-for-mosgiel-roads2GP Data Map (Roads)

zone-map-2gp-mosgiel2GP Zone Map

****

2GP Hearing Topic: Transportation Link

Council Evidence (PDF format)
Section 42A Report
Appendix 1 DCC Operative Plan Road Hierarchy
Appendix 2 Road DCC submission – road classification hierarchy corrections
Appendix 3 Christchurch District Plan Replacement abstract
Appendix 4 Transportation figures
Appendix 5 2GP Section 6 – Transportation
Statement of Evidence of Ian Clark
Statement of evidence – Grant Fisher
Amendment to Section 42a Report Transportation

Statement tabled at hearing (PDF format)
Transport Advice from Sarah Connolly – Principal Consultant Transport Planning – MWH

Related Posts and Comments:
5.2.17 Maurice Prendergast : Defence of 60 year old arterial corridor #2GP
30.5.16 Non-arterial Riccarton Road : Brian Miller stirred by community board
5.6.14 DCC Transport Strategy and Riccarton Road
24.4.14 DCC promotes Riccarton Rd as sole heavy traffic bypass

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Some Councils/CCOs get cleanup from FRAUD and CORRUPTION #NotAll

Stephen Borlase (centre) and Murray Noone (right) at Auckland High Court [NZ Herald]

### NZ Herald Wed, 22 Feb 2017
Herald Business
Two jailed over NZ’s largest bribery case
By Matt Nippert
Two men convicted of corruption in New Zealand’s largest bribery case have been sent to prison. Former Auckland Transport manager Murray Noone, and roading contractor Projenz managing director Stephen Borlase were investigated by the Serious Fraud Office and in December found guilty on six and eight charges, respectively, of taking and giving bribes involving more than $1 million. Justice Sally Fitzgerald this morning at the High Court at Auckland jailed Borlase for five years and six months, and Noone for five years.
Read more + Video | Documents

During the eight-week trial, Crown prosecutor Brian Dickey laid out what he considered to be a “culture of corruption” in the roading department at RDC and Auckland Transport centred on the two accused. Dickey outlined hundreds of thousands of dollars in entertainment spending by Projenz on council staff, and in cross-examining Borlase claimed the arrangement had bound the pair tight.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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SH1 Cycleways : the real story

Received from Hilary Calvert
Wed, 22 Feb 2017 12:40 p.m.

[begins]

NZTA has produced a Q and A sheet for their project news update on our cycle lanes along the one-way streets.

An annotated version is provided for reality junkies:

Q: Why is there a need for separated cycleways on the one-way system?

NZTA: Cyclists and pedestrians are over represented in fatal and serious injury crashes. There have been 2 fatalities since 2011. Short-term safety measure were put into place in 2013. Separated cycle lanes are the long-term solution.

Reality: There have been no deaths since the cycle lanes were widened in 2013. The two deaths since 2011 were likely contributed to by the very act of creating cycle lanes in the blind spot of vehicles. Had these cyclists been on the road they would have been safer.

Q: Where else in the country are they using these?

NZTA: These lanes are becoming familiar in major cities including Christchurch. Busy urban routes such as the one-way streets in Dunedin need higher standards of cycle lanes.

Reality: No one in their right mind would direct cyclists to State Highway 1, where all the trucks go. If these two parallel roads were returned to two-way streets, you might put trucks on one and bikes on the other. But this is mad.

Q: Why put the cycleways on the right rather than the left?

NZTA: Because it increases cycle safety and separates them from bus stops.

Reality: Bingo! NZTA has finally realised delivering cyclists to the blind side of trucks is very dangerous. But it was NZTA who chose to do that last time. A simple sorry would be a start.

Q: why not on the right-hand side from Duke St to Otago Museum then?

NZTA: This has been done in response to feedback received and supported by further cycle surveys. And there is a large number of cyclists who use this route who would have to cross the road.

Reality: Really? So feedback overcomes safety? Surely this brings into question whether they really understand the safety issues with the left-hand side. WE all know that cyclists are no different from the rest of us, they will take their bikes on the shortest route they can find. Which will mean that they are spending most of their time not on the new cycle lane. Actually, most of their time will be spent walking around campus because the University won’t let cyclists inside – safety issues, apparently.

Q: What impact will this have on parking?

NZTA: Keeping the cycle lanes on the unsafe side of the road will mean we lose 20 fewer parks. Parking will be provided in high demand areas. (see revised plans).

Reality: We will lose hundreds of parks, particularly in the highest parking areas around the hospital (made worse by the DCC proposal to build on the car parking area at Frederick St). Parking is already squeezed in high demand areas. These guys are in la la land, and I don’t mean the award winning movie.

Q: Will these cycle lanes disrupt traffic flows?

NZTA: The lanes are likely to smooth traffic flows and provide more reliable travel times because there will be fewer parking movements.

Reality: Yes more reliably longer times, which are likely to double for anyone using the one-way streets. More phases for cyclists and pedestrians, more traffic trying to find parks, more time needed to get to hospital appointments. It wasn’t that broke. Why are those from out of town so determined to get in the way of traffic in Dunedin?

Q: How many cyclists are likely to use the cycle lanes?

NZTA: Current usage peaks at 500 per day, but this could easily double. We will measure the change.

Reality: Weasel words. Try looking north from Lower Stuart St along the one-way street. There will be several vehicles on the cycle lanes and likely not even 1 cyclist. The reality is that we are likely to have fewer than 1 cyclist per kilometre of cycleway in Dunedin at any one time. The maximum of 500 is not relevant to the usage in general. (And indeed 500 per day is 500 over 1440 minutes, about one every 3 minutes. At the absolute peak. For a moment in time. So it may double to 1 cyclist at the absolute maximum every 1.5 minutes.) And having measured it later, we are still stuck with the cycle lanes even if they don’t create double the usage. Meanwhile there is no proposed monitoring of the time wasted on getting to hospital appointments, or the time spent by students walking further from free car parking to lectures, or any other flow-on effects of decreased parking where it is currently available.

Q: When is work likely to start?

NZTA: May 2017, taking around 15 months and in such a way as to ensure the one-way system is able to operate effectively and any disruption is kept to a minimum.

Reality: These streets are groaning at the seams already. Our entire one-way system will become impossible to operate usefully, and it will take double the time. By this time those who came to Dunedin because the traffic wasn’t so bad will have the start of every working day diminished and their Dunedin experience effectively destroyed around the central city. We have an elderly population, and this will be the last three years of the lives of some of us.

Q: Who pays and what will it cost?

NZTA: NZTA will pay for the work directly related to the cycle lanes. $8million.

Reality: More weasel words. There are large costs not included in the direct costs. Agencies are keen on doing guestimates of the multiplier effect of benefits to the city for, say, acts at the stadium. What about a study of the likely costs to the city of loss of parking revenue, loss of time spent driving around, loss of time spent walking from vehicles, anxiety around hospital appointments, loss of business for those relying on easy car access for their custom etc. There are also costs for the work connecting roads and footpaths etc between the cycleways and the rest of our DCC infrastructure, and the inevitable landscaping in the vicinity. And then the costs of fixing what we had to redo because none of the agencies are working together. An expensive nightmare.

Q: What is being done to provide more integrated transport in Dunedin?

NZTA: NZTA, DCC and ORC are implementing transport related projects: this is one. These cycle lanes will connect with cycling lanes being considered in North Dunedin linking University, Hospital, Otago Polytechnic and the CBD.

Reality: These institutions are already handy to each other. As regards the University the biggest obstacle to cycling is the size of the campus which cannot be crossed by cyclists.

****

Pity NZTA doesn’t have a booth in the heart of Dunedin where they could come and sit and listen to the issues. Perhaps on the corner of Stuart St and the one-way streets?

[ends]

NZTA Dunedin Urban Cycleways Programme
Cycling in Dunedin contributes to improving transport options, providing a more efficient and integrated transport network, improving health, economic and social outcomes and city liveability. The Urban Cycleways Fund, subject to council approval, will help to accelerate the City to Harbour Bridge and the Central City and North East Valley cycle network.

NZTA Urban Cycleways Programme [general information]

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

█ GREEN ATTACK ON YOUR BUILT ENVIRONMENT

leisure-cyclist-on-beach-road-cycleway-auckland-nzta-govt-nz-1two-way-separated-cycleway-beach-road-auckland-nzta-govt-nzTwo-way separated cycleway on Beach Road, Auckland [nzta.govt.nz]

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Delta #EpicPoleFail : Tuesday’s problem at Waldronville

Received.
Tue, 21 Feb 2017 at 5:40 p.m.

[begins]

CD’s Latest from Delta

Today’s Pole Replacement Failure Debacle :

The following is not a promising portent for the pole programme; Delta/Aurora replaced 5-6 poles at Waldronville very recently, like a couple of weeks ago…. The infamous algorithm said everything was hunky-dory. However real humans got in the way, and now, the freshly installed NEW poles ….have red and blue tags (Blue = structural defect). The poles were not installed correctly. Apparently the poles were installed near a ditch, possibly by an inexperienced new subcontract crew, or perhaps without a proper set of installation instructions because there are now no longer enough engineers and experienced staff at Delta/Aurora to function properly.   

Godfrey and the Gyroscope, we look forward to your fake takes on this episode.

[ends]
 

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr
 

This post is offered in the public interest.

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Katy Perry hamster safe

KatyPerryVEVO Published on Feb 9, 2017
Katy Perry – Chained To The Rhythm (Lyric Video) ft. Skip Marley

Directed by: Aya Tanimura
Executive Producer: Danny Lockwood
Produced by: Cailin Lowry and Nicholas Ruff
Director of Photography: Mario Contini
Production Designer: Audrey Rosenberg
Post-Production Services: Coyote Post
Editor: Sean Horvath
Colorist: Matthew Schwab
GFX: Vince Walker, Bogdan Ciornei, Adam Petke
Miniature Food: Walking With Giants

Starring Mr. Parsons the Hamster and Rory Ruff

All food eaten by Mr. Parsons was made with hamster safe ingredients.
American Humane monitored the animal action. No animals were harmed.

Billboard.com
Watch Katy Perry’s Delicious ‘Chained to the Rhythm’ Lyric Vid: Bouncing Hamsters, Micro-Burgers & Teeny Spaghetti
2/10/2017 by Gil Kaufman
Katy Perry goes real small in the lyric video for her brand new single, “Chained to the Rhythm”. While the singer doesn’t appear in the clip, she does make sure some delicious micro-meals get prepared for a family of adorable hamsters. There’s really no other way to explain the out-there visual for the bouncy reggae-tinged track co-written by Sia and featuring Skip Marley, grandson of reggae legend Bob Marley. 
Directed by Aya Tanimura, the adorbs clip features a hamster emoji bouncing over the lyrics (“so comfortable, we’re living in a bubble, bubble/ So comfortable, we cannot see the trouble, trouble”) as a pair of hands delicately cook up micro-burgers and teeny spaghetti for a rodent family. Is KP making a statement about the state of our world with the repeated cuts to hamsters running endlessly on wheels? Who knows?
The thing is damn cute, though.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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