Showing posts from February 6, 2011

EQC - The first Geotech Interpretative reports have been released.

The geotech interpretative reports for Brooklands and Spencerville have been released. The Brooklands report is here and the Spencerville report here.

The release of these reports mean that in Zones A and B repair and rebuilding work can commence, subject to the assessment and paperwork requirements of EQR/Fletchers or the project managers for the insurance companies. However, as I understand it, there is no clarity yet as to who will do the land remediation work; neither EQR/Fletchers nor the insurance companies currently see that as part of their role.

EQC describe the reports in this way:
The factual and interpretative reports summarise the ground testing work which has been undertaken in the suburbs and provide the necessary technical information for engineers to progress the design of the perimeter treatment work as well as the design of foundations for houses which need to be rebuilt. The interpretative reports present details of the investigations and interpretations …

EQC complaints procedure - Update on another example of it in use

Michelle and Jeremy have also had a response from EQC via the complaints system. Here is an extract from Michelle's e-mail received yesterday (Friday):
"You will be pleased to know that the complaints procedure is now working; we had an email from them on Wednesday apologising for their lack of contact and a phone call today.We will now be reassessed and hopefully be given an appropriate amount to repair our property should we decide to opt out of Fletchers.I believe we are the fifth house that has requested reassessment within our housing group."EQC do seem to be getting there. .

Coffee at the Bicycle Thief

Paul and I had coffee at 1pm today with a communications person from MacDow Fletchers. The venue was the Bicycle Thief.

She had arranged for us to meet so we could express our views on the type of communication we felt would be appropriate for our community of streets. Nearly an hour was spent discussing various items from the overall plan, to the timing of works, and the important details essential to individual households.

The brochure arriving in letterboxes tomorrow will be a good pointer towards how MacDow Fletcher are going to let everyone know what is happening, and what is coming up.

Christchurch Infrastructure Rebuild - starts today

I attended the start-up ceremony for the infrastructure rebuild this morning. Held at Burwood Park, it commenced with a formal welcome followed by speeches by Bob Parker (a polished performance) and Gerry Brownlee (a good speaker). Also present were Phil Gough, Brendon Burns, Nicky Wagner and Dame Margaret Bazley (ECan Commissioner)

It was basically an "in-house" function for the Council and the various contractors, plus associated organisations such as ECan. There was little hard information, however some tentative targets were announced for various initial activities. You will find this information in the "Rebuild News" newsletter (mentioned in the previous post) being delivered tomorrow.

The highlight was meeting Vern, a civil engineer with a house near Horseshoe Lake, who has spent quite a bit of time looking around and analysing physical aspects of the quake. He and his neighbours are in Zone C, so much of today's announcements will have little …

Avonside, Burwood and Dallington - Infrastructure Rebuild news

MacDow Fletcher, a joint venture between McConnell Dowell and Fletcher Construction, have been contracted by the CCC to undertake reconstruction of the city's infrastructure in our area. From today they will be based at 75 New Brighton Road, upstairs at the Burwood Park Bowling Club.

MacDow Fletcher have published a newsletter Stronger Christchurch Rebuild News - Infrastructure Rebuild. It is not yet available on their website however copies will be distributed to letter boxes tomorrow. The website is here.

The first issue of the newsletter contains:
an introduction to MacDow Fletchercontact information for the rebuild team (including the drop-in centre)information on what has to be done in Avonside, Burwood and Dallingtonwhat will be fixed firstthe next steps in the processsafety informationThe website also provides separate coverage for: Brooklands and Spencerville, Bexley and Southshore, Halswell, and "Other Areas".

Information for Kaiapoi and other areas in Waim…

EQC - access to geotech reports

EQC have created an additonal web page for the technical (factual) reports. It can be foundhere.

These are the reports for:
AvondaleAvonsideBexley & Aranui (completed)Bishopdale, Casebrook & RedwoodBrooklands (completed)BurwoodDallington LowerDallington UpperFendalton & MerivaleHalswellKaiapoi North (completed)Kaiapoi South (completed)Kairaki & Pines Beach (completed)New BrightonParklandsRichmondSouthshoreSpencerville (completed)Tai Tapu (completed)Wainoni

CCC - the web page "Building process and regulations" has been updated

The council have updated this page and it has a "last reviewed date" of 8 February. Unfortunately it is not stated what the changes are, or how significant they are.

The contents of the page are:
Repairs to earthquake prone, dangerous and insanitary buildingsLand Information Memorandum (LIM)Building standards and regulationsBuilding ConsentsConsents for demolition or repairFlood protectionLand remediationHeritage and character buildingsAftershocks and claimsCouncil placardsBuilding RecoveryToilet and drainage damageWhen to call the Fire ServiceEECA Chimney Replacement SchemeThe page is here.

EQC complaints procedure - Update on using it

We received a call from EQC (Karl) this morning regarding the complaint made via their website.

Karl had looked into the background of our complaint (no scope of works information available) and discovered that an important part of the paperwork was missing (pretty much the same problem as experienced by someone else in the street). They are now going to do an intensive follow up and contact us again.

The good news is that their complaints system does seem to work, albeit slowly, and at different speeds (Michelle and Jeremy are still waiting to hear back about their complaint). As there are over 170,000 claims, if there were a 5% problem rate that would represent 8,500 potential cases for investigation and complaint. Considering how much paper work there is being generated every day I don't envy them in their work.

Now to wait for the result of the follow up process.

Some street statistics

Part of the work being done on traffic and on-street parking (Dorian, Gail and Paul) has involved Gail mapping out, on an aerial photograph, the status of houses in our part of the world: Avonside Drive (Woodham to Retreat road), Chaddesden, Patten and Cowlishaw. Those who went to the picnic (oops - I meant barbecue) would have seen the photograph, and had a chance to add information about their property. If you didn't, let one of us know.

This information has been summarised and appears below. To help avoid individual properties being identified, only Cowlishaw street figures have been used.

At this stage dwellings (houses or flats) have been divided into one of four categories.

There are 68 65 dwellings in the street.
the situation of 28 is not known, 1 is below the $10,000 level, 29 are in the $10,000 to $100,000 category, and 7 in the above $100,000 category. Most of the numbers are conservative estimates based on our growing experience in these things, informal fee…

CCC - Floor and Foundation Design Standards

Some houses experienced damage to the land around or under them through liquifaction, and the subsequent settling process.

Where land damage has affected the foundations of a house, specific requirements must be met as part of the repair or rebuild process. The Council have taken information from the Department of Building and Housing guide book (copy here) and turned it into a FAQ format. The council FAQ page ishere.

Here is one question from the council's FAQ:
How do I know whether I need a special engineered design for my house’s floor and/or foundation?
If your building was damaged in an earthquake it is likely you will need to have a special design for the foundation and/or floor of the type outlined in the Department of Building and Housing’s document titled: ‘Guidance on house repairs and reconstruction following the Canterbury earthquake’.You can also check whether your house is in an area that could experience liquefaction in future earthquakes by looking at the E…

State Insurance: earthquake FAQ - Part 3 Complaints and advocacy

The final part of the State Insurance FAQ deals with how complaints can be dealt with, and advocacy support. Again, while this post is focused on the State FAQ, the comments are generic and likely to apply to all insurance companies.


If you have a complaint about the way your claim (or you) are being handled by the insurer you can , once the standard process has been followed to the very (and likely bitter) end, raise it with what State call the Ombudsman.

This is not the "real" Parliamentary Ombudsmen, but the Insurance and Savings Ombudsman (ISO) established and funded by insurance companies. For more about the two, see the blog pageshere andhere.

At this point in the process you put your case, the ISO will assess it against the perspective of the insurance company, and the details of your insurance claim (which is a legal document and the basis of your insurance cover). Their recommendation will be made after consideration of all this. If you agree w…

State Insurance: earthquake FAQ - Part 2 Design of a replacement house.

Some of us have discussed what might be possible if our houses were to be demolished. At this stage it looks, unofficially, as though there will be at least 6 houses in the demolish category.

Modern houses are easy to replace but house designs from decades ago are unlikely to be used. What can be done?

While not addressing this directly, State set out the boundaries for their clients. It is likely the boundaries will be similar with other insurance companies. The following is from the FAQ section headed Questions about your repair/rebuild.
"Your policy contract with us covers you to reinstate your home, like for like, with today’s building materials and obviously we would not replace materials that are prohibited today such as asbestos. Where there is no material impact in terms of cost and code compliance, we will work with you to accommodate changes you would like to make.
Please note, however, that any extra costs associated with these changes will be your responsi…

State Insurance: earthquake FAQ - Part 1 (a good read)

State Insurance, part of IAG, have recently placed an earthquake FAQ on their web site.  Someone at State has done a good job in laying out the situation from State's perspective. As always issues arise and these will be covered separately. If you are insured with State this is the document to read. The FAQ is here.

Even if you are not insured with State this is well worth reading, keeping in mind that other insurers will differ on specifics. It will certainly give you some questions to take to your insurer.

The main topic headings are:
How we are prioritising claims1. How are you prioritising who gets rebuilt first?2. I’m in Zone A (no land damage) and the government is saying repairs can begin now so why hasn’t mine started?3. Once the EQC has paid, when will you start my rebuild/repair? Questions about the EQCEQC Zone AEQC Zone BEQC Zone C1.  Can you assess my home now and at least tell me whether you are going to repair it or rebuild it?2.  I’m in Zone C and trying to g…