More earthquake news

Most of the tourists who were stuck in Kaikoura have now been evacuated. About 200 people were evacuated by airforce helicopters. The navy ship Canterbury took about 450 people to Christchurch and has now returned to transfer more people. Because it was a very low tide, small boats were used to take 12 people at a time out to the ship.

Many of the people were grateful to leave Kaikoura because of the hundreds of aftershocks. They were also looking forward to having a shower when they got to Christchurch. Kaikoura has lost water supplies, sewerage, electricity, phone lines and wi fi. The navy and airforce are bringing in fresh water and food. Dairy farmers have to use diesel generators to milk their cows but the milk is poured onto the land because the road to the dairy factory is closed.

The government has promised to help small business owners in the same way that they helped in Christchurch. Each worker can receive $500 a week for the next 8 weeks.

Kaikoura is famous for fishing and especially for crayfish and paua. Unfortunately, the earthquake has pushed up the seabed about 1 metre in places, leaving crayfish and paua out of the water. Volunteers have been trying to save these by taking them further out to sea.

A number of army trucks left Christchurch today to take food and water to Kaikoura. They tried using an inland road but there were too may slips on the road, and continuing rain today meant more slips were possible.

So Kaikoura has suffered the most damage but Wellington also has earthquake problems. About 10 buildings in the central city had to close because they have been badly damaged. Each of these buildings is now fenced off and surrounding areas are closed. The Statistics New Zealand building is one of these and workers are not allowed to enter. The boss of Statistics New Zealand said she was grateful that the earthquake was at midnight so no one was in the building but she is wondering why this happened to a relatively new building.


• stuck (adj) – trapped, cannot move away
• evacuate (v, usually passive) – be forced to leave because of danger
• grateful (adj) – thankful
• sewerage (n) – waste water from toilets etc
• generator (n) -a machine which makes electricity from oil
• crayfish (n) – lobster
• paua (n) – black shellfish (abalone) which has only one shell, a very beautiful shell of many colours
• volunteers (n) – helpers who are not paid
• inland (adj) – not a coastal road; the usual road is along the coast
• slips (n) – hillside falling onto the road
• fenced off (v, passive) – fences around it, to stop people entering
• surrounding (adj) – area around it
• relatively (adv) – quite, nearly

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