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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

PM responsible for every drop

There was no emergency response. At 2:20am last Wednesday the Rena struck the reef and the following day Maritime NZ assured the public that a response was underway. That was a lie. They had no response, they pissed around - just as they did with the Jodi F Millenium incident in Gisborne when they let the oil wash up on the beaches of Gisborne. The only one with any push to take it seriously and do something is the PM. And he has done zip.

Every drop of oil - as I have said in an earlier post - is his responsibility. The old trick that Helen Clark used to use of blaming the incident itself and how it occurred doesn't wash - it is the response to it that counts. There has been almost no response. Any oil hitting the shore is a failure and it is the government's failure. All we have had are excuses. Our clean green image is going to be tarnished in a film of dirty oil.

NZ Herald:
Environment Minister Nick Smith this afternoon said oil had poured out of a new puncture in the Rena at "fivefold" the rate it had in the days after the ship grounded on Astrolabe Reef.

He said significant amounts of oil would start washing up on beaches around Mt Maunganui from tomorrow and into the coming weeks.

The "tragic" spill was inevitable since the Rena grounded carrying 1700 tonnes of oil at 2:20am last Wednesday, he said.

He promised the Government would hold those who were responsible for the grounding to account.

It may be news to Nick Smith, but it is the government that is responsible. Just leaving it to private sector salvage firms was not something a responsible government would do. The grounding is one issue, but it is the response that the National government will be held to account over - it has been non-existent.

And it was all preventable and we all saw it coming. The weather at the time was fine, the weather for the next three days was calm - and what was the response - they would be do 'training' instead of actually going out there and doing something to contain it. Now the weather has turned bad and the Rena has issued a mayday call.

The crew on the stranded cargo ship Rena would have been fearing for their lives when the vessel tipped by about 4 degrees overnight, the union representing New Zealand maritime workers says.

The 17, mostly Filipino, crew members issued a mayday call when the ship crushed the reef it was resting on and shifted back a few degrees from its 10-degree list.
A Maritime New Zealand spokeswoman said the crew issued the mayday call as a "standard precautionary measure''.

"They do the mayday call as that is the way to get them off quickly,'' she said.

Maritime Union general secretary Joe Fleetwood did not accept this and said the crew would have been fearing for their lives.

"It wouldn't have bee a precautionary thing. As soon as you hit that button you're in distress. They probably feared for their safety, thinking this vessel's going to snap in half or roll over and kill everyone on board."

This is a disaster - a National disaster.


At 12/10/11 10:15 am, Blogger Tim said...

It is indeed a National disaster!!!. I imagine the following might be seen (initially at least) as unfair. The response though is part of a culture that has emerged in recent times. Plebians SHOULDN'T respond to natural disasters - they don't know what they're doing. Christchurch Earthquake; Pike RIver Mine (where immediately after the explosion - the safest time to enter) those willing to assist cannot. Plebians should not place their lives on the line... LEAVE IT to the "authorities" and the "experts". It's control-freak BULLSHIT. IF the "authorities" were such experts, they'd have taken notice of concerns expressed - as far as the Pike Mine thing - sooner! I know of one experienced person that thought the place was an accident waiting to happen. I feel sorry for Peter Cowan too - hamstrung by this current 'culture'.
How did we used to cope?...The Wahine Disaster seems to have been forgotten.
The "authorities"...the "experts" DID NOT RESPOND in a timely manner.
Even worse, now we have Jonky's and Nik Smiths who are either really fucking naiive, or ill-informed feeding us bullshit and spin. (e.g. the dispersant thing).
For FUCK'S sake - there are even signs telling people NOT to respond and to "leave it to the experts. It's Gubbamint. It's more nanny state than anything Helen Clarke ever proposed.
People: DON'T try and rescue people after an earthquake - you might hurt yourselves - even get killed!; DON'T try and clean up cow-pat oil-nodules - you might touch toxic material!; DON'T try and enter a mine even AFTER combustable material has just been spent - You might hurt yourselves!
After all this shit is over - I hope to see a few resignations, but I doubt that will happen.
We have a gubbamint that has been lying to us on so many levels! We have a wimp as a Prime Minister too....all image and no substance.
Even the last remaining Public Service Broadcaster has now been infected with this bullshit - a Cavanagh that is now backpeddling, but who should have fronted up at the start. We have a week media - also more concerned about image than the 4th Estate. Fuck me - what was all that shit this morning on Breakfast or # - whoever it was - where some Johnny on the spot "brave reporter" who could just as easily have parked himself up in a studio telling us how bad things were. Maaaate! WE KNOW! I'm sorry a bit of rainwater had to trickle down your fucking neck in "appalling weather".
For FUCK'S sake NZ...wake up!
We're allowing ourselves to be turned into a "nation" of fucking whimps - and I have to say one that our immediate neighbours across the Tasman wouldn't stand for. We get fed crap, and we now just roll over and lay down.
Who would have thought that 'closing the gaps' would come to mean a contest between a Trans-Tasman' sibling - we can't even overcome that -and you'll all be left wondering why.
You get the gubbamint you deserve!
Nick Smith FFS! And before that Stevie and John....and you're all (NZers) wondering WHY this happened?

At 12/10/11 11:22 am, Blogger Fern said...

Tim's right. People power is the best response at times like this. The BOP needs someone like Sam whatsisname to organise a citizen army to clean up the beaches. Sam set up the student army to clear the Chch streets of liquefaction. What if the authorities had said “Don’t clear it up, you might do your back in, wait until the tremors finish and then we’ll clear it all up with bulldozers in one go.” Fat lot of use that would have been.


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