Rena splits in two

The moment the media and Gareth Hughes have all been waiting for has finally arrived, the MV Rena has finally split in two.

The Rena has split in two, with the pieces pushed 30 metres apart by the wild weather overnight.

Maritime New Zealand spokesman Ross Henderson said there had been a “significant” change in the ship’s condition, though the pieces were still on the reef.

The forward section of the ship was in its original position on the reef, while the stern had broken away and, while still on the reef, was moving siginificantly.

Henderson said the ship had been pounded by 6-metres swells and the bad weather was expected to continue for the next three to four days.

“There has been a significant discharge of containers and container debris from the ship. This may result in the 3nm [nautical mile] exclusion zone being extended.

Drunk Walkers are the problem

Following on from my post about the stupid person walking on the motorway is evidence from Freakonomics to suggest that drunk walkers are more of a problem than drunk drivers:

In 2009, the most recent year for which we have data, about 34,000 people died in traffic accidents. Roughly half of them were drivers ? 41 percent of whom were drunk. There were more than 4,000 pedestrians killed ? and 35 percent of them were drunk. Of course, a drunk walker can?t hurt or kill someone else the way a drunk driver can, and people drive drunk much farther distances than they?d walk drunk. But the danger is hardly insignificant, says trauma surgeon Thomas Esposito.

I’d love to know that?the?stats are for here.

Stupid is as Stupid Does, Ctd

The new year is ushered in by the death of a stupid person. The media calls them a pedestrian but as well know there is no such thing as a pedestrian on a motorway:

A pedestrian has been run over and killed on an Auckland motorway this morning.

Counties Manukau police have closed the Mangere-airport motorway to all south-bound traffic, northern communications Inspector Lou Alofa said.

All traffic heading south was being directed off the Walmsley Rd off-ramp. North-bound traffic was not affected.

“Motorists travelling south are advised to take the Mahunga Dr turn off if possible to relieve the backlog on Walmsley Rd, particularly those heading for the airport,” Alofa said.

The serious crash unit was investigating the collision.

5.8 Quake in Christchurch

Christchurch has suffered another large earthquake:

There has been a large earthquake in Christchurch this afternoon. The quake was described as “violent” by Herald reporter Jarrod Booker who was in his home when the quake hit.

It was quickly followed by at least four strong aftershocks. Geonet said the quake measured 5.8 on the Richter Scale, at a depth of just 8km. It struck just off the coast of Pegasus Bay at 1.58pm.

There have been several strong aftershocks following the intial quake.

Damage from the quake is unknown, but it was felt as far away as Mosgiel near Dunedin.

NZ Herald coverage.

Stuff coverage.

NewtalkZB coverage.

UPDATE: A Second Quake, larger than the forst has struck Christchurch. Poor bastards.

The Secret Diary of David Shearer

Steve Braunias has a crack at David Shearer in his ongoing “The Secret Diary of…” series:


Just as we arrived in Palmerston North for day two of the roadshow, a plague of locusts swept across the Manawatu, causing a famine which threatened to disrupt Christmas.

I ascended to heaven and came back down with loaves and fishes.

Cunliffe was waiting for me.

“Ending world hunger is a laudable idea,” he said, “but our angelic friend should realise that it’s no match for Labour’s policy of removing GST off food.

“New Zealand doesn’t need miracles. It needs a robust performance in the debating chamber.” I looked at my stigmata. It was bleeding.

Guess what hair colour?

Guess what hair colour this fool has:

A fashion model and magazine editor was recovering in a hospital Tuesday after severing her hand and suffering severe facial injuries when she walked into a spinning airplane propeller in north Texas.

Witnesses said that Lauren Scruggs, 23, had just stepped off the plane at a private airport in McKinney, Texas, on Saturday night when she apparently walked in front of the propeller. She was taken by helicopter to the hospital, where she underwent several surgeries over the weekend.

Surgeons had to amputate Scruggs’ left hand, and the accident caused severe damage to her shoulder and head, the New York Post reported.

Scruggs, who lives in Plano, Texas, is the editor of the online fashion magazine LOLO and has also worked in the costume department of the show “Gossip Girl.”

Chauvel should quit the earthquake predictions business

Just last week Charles Chauvel was telling everyone who would listen that the risk of an earthquake before Christmas was low:

“These buildings must have been considered safe last week, and the week before. The acting deputy secretary of courts says there is ?no imminent danger?. Instead of this knee-jerk reaction, a proper risk assessment should apply.

?The courtrooms in these courthouses will be scheduled for skeleton sittings over those three or four weeks. The likelihood of a major quake in most of the affected locations between now and Christmas is low.

After last nights earthquake in the Wellington region it looks like Charles Chauvel’s earthquake predicting skills have as much credibility as his skills at winning Ohariu off Peter Dunne.

Cry me a river of tears

Oh boo hoo:

A car carrying four gang members has crashed into a parked truck in Wanganui, leaving three men in hospital, one in a serious condition.

The crash occurred at about 4.20pm today.

St John Ambulance operational manager Jimmy Seville, who attended the crash, said two of the injured men had to be cut from the wreckage of the car.

Wanganui Fire Brigade senior fire officer Bryce Coneybeer said the car was travelling at a very high speed.

“The skid mark on the road is incredible.”

He said the car was unrecognisable after the crash.

TV3 coverage of chopper crash

TV3 have much better video of the chopper crash yesterday. Taken from a different angle you can clearly see the cause of the accident is a fool on the ground jumping up to secure the cable that the pilot is slowly and carefully lowering to the ground.

That one little jump and the addition of the weight of that man to the cable straightened it out and pulled it into the path of the rotors. The chopper nearly lands on the fool for his troubles.

Look at the video at about 3:20. You can see him jump up and grab the cable which then gets pulled into the path of the rotors. The chopper then destroys itself and injures the pilot in a matter of seconds.


First containers removed

The first containers are now coming off the MV Rena:

The first of more than 1200 shipping containers have been removed from the stricken cargo ship Rena, six weeks after it ran aground on the Astrolabe Reef off the coast of Tauranga.

Three containers were lifted off onto the crane barge Sea Tow 60 today, the start of a process expected to take several months.

Poor weather halted the operation yesterday, but salvors today made the most of good conditions in the Bay of Plenty, Maritime New Zealand salvage manager Kenny Crawford said.

“Obviously getting the first container off is a milestone for the operation, but there is still a very long way to go. The removal process will take time as, for safety reasons, each container needs to be lifted separately. Each will also present its own challenges, depending on its position on the vessel and how badly damaged it is.”

The oil of gone, the containers are coming of and the beaches are open, looks like all the doomsayers were wrong.