Hurunui District Council has been appalled with the inaccurate reporting that has been carrying on in relation to Tuesday’s plantation fire – and the negative economic consequences that this irresponsible, sensationalist misreporting has caused to the small village of Hanmer Springs.
The imagery from the fire at its peak was very powerful – and as most of this was taken at dawn, the bright orange flames against the silhouetted background was a spectacular sight and made for pretty compelling viewing.
It is true that access to the single-lane Waiau Ferry Bridge and the portion of narrow road near this area was closed on Tuesday morning, only reopening to stop-go control from around 1pm that afternoon – the fire came very close to this area and in fact crews remain in that area keeping a dampening down vigil as this is the main access road into the Hanmer Basin. The stop-go controls also remain in order to provide a level of safety to those crews working in this area.
But scaremongering information continued to grab headlines yesterday (Thursday) with reports that strong winds had caused the fire to flare up again, with 15 metre flames shooting into the air, local residents being evacuated and eight helicopters doing their best in the trying conditions. Imagery from Tuesday’s fire was used to accompany these extremely exaggerated reports.
They may not be in their underwear, bashing angrily on their keyboards from their bedrooms, but that doesn’t make the “modern journalist” any less capable of feeling disconnected from the real world; the world where actions have consequences. Read more »