The Defence Force provided round-the-clock assistance to the people of Christchurch in the wake of the 22 February earthquake.
With New Zealand facing a situation in Christchurch of immense proportions, a top priority for the Defence Force has been to support emergency services, by securing quake-ravaged areas and maintaining public safety.
At the peak of our effort some 1796 Defence Force people were directly involved in earthquake-related operations – 239 Navy, 1379 Army and 150 Air Force Regular Force, as well as various companies of Reserves. With Defence people at Burnham, Wellington, Linton, Ohakea, Devonport and Whenuapai continuing to lend support.
Four Navy ships, HMNZ Ships CANTERBURY, PUKAKI, OTAGO and RESOLUTION supported the mission, delivering people and freight in and out of Lyttelton, and surveying the harbour.
CANTERBURY returned to Lyttelton several times with consignments of supplies, including portable showers, excavators, trucks and trailers. In total, CANTERBURY has transported a total of 1707 tonnes of vehicles and equipment and 375 personnel in and out of Lyttelton.
As well as trucks and excavators, the load on CANTERBURY being unloaded over the initial few weeks included drainage and general maintenance equipment:
- 5 x Excavators
- 1 x JCB Loader
- 1 x Works Ute and caravan
- 1 x Truck and compressor
- 1 x Large truck and transporter
- 2 x Large trucks and 3 axle trailers ﬁlled with heavy duty drainage equip
- 1 x Truck and generator
- 1 x Truck and trailer
- 1 x Ute
- 2 x trailers
- 1 x Large truck and 4 axle trailer
- 5 x Trenching frames
- 2 x 20ft containers
- 5 x large Porta-showers
Also a fuel tanker (belonging to Chevron Mobil), four Telecom vans, four pallets of Telecom equipment, 20 DOC 4WD vehicles, ﬁve Housing New Zealand 4WD vehicles, two pallets of water, two containers of bedding (Department of Corrections), medical backpacks (Ministry of Education), Army equipment including two Unimog trucks, a truck tractor and 12 Bailey bridges, four refrigerated containers and three diesel generators.
Well done everyone.
Members of the RNZN presented a cheque to the Westpac Red Cross Christchurch Earthquake Appeal. The money was raised through sausage sizzles and collections at the messes. $1950.80 was raised.