Sunday, December 11, 2011

Royal Commission Examines Poorly Constructed Buildings in Christchurch Earthquakes

Earlier today (December 12), New Zealand's latest phase of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Canterbury Earthquakes starts will begin examining the deaths of people killed from individual building collapses on February 22. Specifically, the hearing will investigate several building collapses of two-level unreinforced masonry buildings in Christchurch which failed in the fatal magnitude-6.3 quake, killing those inside as well as passers-by.

Three buildings in particular are being examined, including 593 Colombo Street, in Christchurch, the shop encompassing Southern Ink Tattoo. Tattooist Matthew Stuart McEachen, 25, died when he was hit by falling masonry, causing severe head injuries, as he attempted to escape the building. American tourist Rachel Conley, 27, was also killed while leaving the tattoo parlor after visiting the shop.

COMMENT: Structural engineers, property management firms, building tenants and the Christchurch City Council will also present evidence during the latest phase of the hearing, which is due to last several days.

Considering that there are so many earthquake-prone zones in the world, anyone traveling to such zones should not leave home until they understand fully how to protect themselves not only from earthquakes, but from cyclones, hurricanes, tsunamis and volcanoes as well.

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