SH2 safety improvements commencing near Ōpōtiki

Source: New Zealand Transport Agency

Work to make State Highway 2 between Wainui Road and Ōpōtiki safer for road users will get underway this month.

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency advises the contract to complete the first 8 km section of the SH2 Wainui Road to Ōpōtiki Safety Improvements project has been awarded to Splice Construction, with contractors setting up on site last week.

Construction will begin between the SH2 intersection with Wainui Road and the SH2 intersection with Ōhiwa Beach Road. Work is expected to take four months to complete.

Waka Kotahi Director Regional Relationships David Speirs says the project will make this important stretch of state highway safer for all.

“It’s fantastic to be starting construction on the first section of these safety improvements, which will include shoulder widening, side barriers at high risk locations, with centreline and edge line rumble strips and road marking throughout.

“There are a number of benefits of this project. Not only will these safety improvements save lives, but the project will employ local workers where possible,” says Mr Speirs.

The project is split into three sections with initial funding of $7.6 million enabling the completion of safety works for the first section. Waka Kotahi expects to confirm timings for sections two and three in mid-2021.

Mr Speirs says Waka Kotahi has also heard significant concerns from locals about tailgating and dangerous overtaking along this corridor.

“Waka Kotahi will complete a technical assessment of the current speed limits along this section of SH2 by mid-2021.

“Once the technical assessment is completed, and if it determines the current speed limits are not safe and appropriate, there will be further steps to complete before changing any speed limits, including engagement and consultation with the community,” says Mr Speirs.

“We will work closely with the local councils, our road safety partners and the community, as local knowledge is a vital contributor to the speed review process.

“We look forward to making a real difference to safety on this stretch of SH2 for the benefit of all those who use it.”

Traffic impacts – what’s happening and when?

From mid-March, people will notice construction starting on site. There will be seven work sites between the intersections with Wainui Road and Ōhiwa Beach Road. To minimise traffic disruption, the contractor will work on a maximum of two sites at any time.

During construction there will be Stop/Go traffic management with temporary speed limits in place.

Minor delays are expected and motorists are advised to take extra care when driving through the work sites and to adhere to all traffic management for their safety, and that of road workers and other road users.

Plan ahead for a safe, enjoyable journey this summer. Keep up to date with:

Five organisations appointed to carry out entry certification for used light vehicles

Source: New Zealand Transport Agency

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency has appointed five vehicle inspecting organisations to complete entry certification for used light vehicles in New Zealand following a comprehensive application and evaluation process.

From today (Monday, March 1), AA, VTNZ, VINZ, Drivesure and Canterbury Vehicle Compliance (CVC) are approved to certify that used light vehicles entering the New Zealand fleet meet a wide range of conditions to make sure they are safe and legal for use on New Zealand roads.

Once a vehicle meets the requirements for entry, the certifier issues a registration application form and a Warrant of Fitness (WoF) or Certificate of Fitness (CoF).

“This has been a really positive process, as we’ve raised the bar around the application process for both entry certification and border inspection,” Sue Hardiman, Senior Manager Vehicle and Driver Licensing, says.

“We extended existing appointments through to 28 February 2021 to make sure the appointment process served our regulatory objectives of lifting the standards, professionalism and integrity of the industry.

“We also worked with applicants to ensure the successful applicants are part of a robust model. This collaborative approach allowed us to get a full view of the applicants’ operations and give us confidence in the quality of the applicants and their ability to carry out their delegated duties on behalf of Waka Kotahi.”

This appointment process follows on from a review of the conflicts of interest policy for vehicle entry certification in 2019, in which Waka Kotahi committed to a more robust process for audits and reviews of entry certification and border inspection agencies. This is now occurring through a new border inspection and entry certification compliance team that was created last year.

Waka Kotahi is making good progress on the appointment process for the border inspection sector and expects to have new appointments in place by July.

Plan ahead for a safe, enjoyable journey. Keep up to date with:

Update: Arrest made, Alexandra stabbing

Update: Arrest made, Alexandra stabbing

Source: New Zealand Police (District News)

Police have arrested a 28-year-old man in relation to a stabbing in Alexandra last week.

The man handed himself into the Alexandra Police Station this morning.

He has been charged with wounds with intent to cause grievous bodily harm along with a number of other charges in relation to previous violent offending. 

The man appeared in the Queenstown District Court this afternoon and was remanded in custody to reappear at a later date.

The victim in the matter has been discharged from hospital and is recovering.

Police would like to thank members of the public who assisted us with our enquiries.

This was a distressing incident for our community and these types of incidents will not be tolerated.

We’d also like to acknowledge our staff who worked tirelessly to hold this offender to account.

ENDS

Issued by Police Media Centre

Appeal for video footage following fatal Police shooting in Papatoetoe

Update: Arrest made, Alexandra stabbing

Source: New Zealand Police (District News)

Please attribute to Detective Inspector Aaron Pascoe:

Police are continuing to investigate the death of Tangaru-Noere Turia who was shot by Police following a serious incident in Papatoetoe on Thursday evening.

Police were called to Avis Avenue at around 5.47pm after a shot was fired through a window of a house. Police arrived and despite attempting to negotiating with Mr Turia for some time, he left the house he was in with a firearm and was shot by Police.

Police have setup an online portal where anyone who may have filmed the incident can upload video footage or pictures. This can be footage from before Police arrived or during the actual incident itself.

Anyone with footage or images can upload it here: https://reid.nzpolice.org/

The Police investigation into the incident remains ongoing and we continue to ensure the family of Mr Turia is supported along with our officers who were involved on the evening.

ENDS
Shelley Nahr/NZ Police

How can you support local under Alert Level 3?

How can you support local under Alert Level 3?

Source: Auckland Council

Being back in Alert Level 3 means we must stay in our local communities and, while following some simple rules to keep us safe, we can also keep supporting our local businesses too.

Mayor Phil Goff says that by staying local we can stick to the lockdown requirements, and we can also support local businesses and communities at the same time.

“Being back in lockdown due to COVID-19 impacts us all, including our small businesses. As a part of staying local, we’re asking Aucklanders to support local businesses in their communities—whether that’s your favourite café or restaurant offering click and collect or other top local spots.”

From the local dairy or local restaurant delivery to the best coffee – we know our local area better than anyone. Now is a good time to get behind local businesses and support them through this latest lockdown.

Local businesses like cafes, restaurants and dairies can operate at Alert Level 3, as long as they offer contactless service. Many also offer contactless delivery services. Places must display a QR code and customers must keep their distance and scan the code.

Additionally, staying local means having the chance to discover a local park or checking in with your neighbours to make sure they are doing okay (from a safe distance).

We all helped each other last year and we can all do it again. Together we can support local and help Auckland recover.

Some of the Golden Rules for Business at Alert Level 3 that help us support local are:

  • Businesses need to display a QR code and have an alternative contact tracing system. We recommend making sure people either scan in or provide their contact details. 
  • Customers cannot come onto your premises — unless you are a supermarket, dairy, butcher, fishmonger, greengrocer, petrol station, pharmacy or permitted health service.
  • Your business legally must be contactless. Your customers can pay online, over the phone or in a contactless way. Delivery or pick-up legally must also be contactless.

University of Waikato partners with local iwi to build leadership support in schools

University of Waikato partners with local iwi to build leadership support in schools

Source: University of Waikato

Supporting people to be inspiring, authentic and innovative leaders in education the world over has been a life-long pursuit for Dr Rachel McNae. For over 20 years, Dr McNae has been passionately focused on the issues of social justice and innovative leadership development to create meaningful leadership curricula in schools and communities.

Her work has made an impact on the international stage; Dr McNae has created partnerships between the University and the Vanuatu Ministry of Education, led the New Zealand Educational Administration and Leadership Society as their National President, won national and international research awards, and been recognised for her research and contributions to the group of scholars – International Women Leading Education.

This solid grounding and award-winning expertise placed her in perfect stead to win a national grant working with Waikato-Tainui and the Ministry of Education in 2019 on her latest project which explores Leadership of Local Curriculum. The project will pave the way to better understanding of culturally aligned leadership and relationship building amongst schools, iwi and communities as they design local curriculum.

“Our proposal was successful because of our desire to work in partnership with iwi and engage a strength-based approach to leadership formation.  The ideas which underpinned the design and kaupapa of the work came from deep and rich discussions with Waikato-Tainui education specialists and representatives,” says Dr McNae.

The team wanted to demonstrate how leadership could be conceptualised differently in schools, kura and early years centres, through positioning leadership as a distributed phenomenon – as opposed to something hierarchical, which has traditionally been the case in education and learning institutions here and abroad. Globally, leadership in education has traditionally operated in hierarchical silos – the learner and the teacher – but Dr McNae wants to continue reshaping the way education happens and leadership manifests.

“Leadership is often perceived through positions, systems and structures – positional in nature and something that sits within a hierarchy, often obtained through rites of passage. We need to bring the ‘humanness’ of leadership back by understanding the nature of one’s identity and our interactions with others, our respective personal narratives, our whakapapa,” she says.

The project – which is coming to completion at the end of the month – has seen Dr McNae, Te Puna Rangihau o te Whiringa  Centre for Educational Leadership,  Te Whai Toi Tangata Institute of Professional Learning and Waikato-Tainui work with over 50 leaders in the Waikato region.  The project supported educational leaders to surface and enhance their professional leadership, while exploring what supported leaders of local curriculum to lead in culturally aligned ways.

The team have been discovering and documenting new ways of supporting leaders throughout the Waikato and highlighting what schools can do to build respectful, strong and sustainable partnerships with students, families, iwi and their communities.  Dr McNae explains this “hasn’t been easy for school leaders to access knowledge of local context in order to build relationships with their iwi.”

“As a result, these relationships haven’t been as strong as they would have liked,” she says.

A variety of approaches to their research were positioned to be creative and adaptive allowing leaders to be supported individually, in small groups and as a whole. The key focus was about always coming back to what matters, “knowing our values and establishing and sustaining relationships.” This is something Dr McNae confirms in the ‘busyness’ of education, are areas which are often overlooked when, in fact, they are central to effective leadership.

In addition, the team applied leadership theory to make sense of big leadership ideas through each leader’s real-life experiences.  Embracing leadership as a contextual and embodied practice highlighted there was no ‘one-size-fits-all’ magic approach to leading in culturally aligned ways. The centrality of leadership practices which prioritise relationships and cherish contextual and cultural knowledge was of huge importance to support, inform, and in some cases transform future generations of leaders in education, both here and overseas.

Deadline change for methyl bromide recapture

Source: Environmental Protection Authority

The gas is mainly used to fumigate logs and timber products before they are exported. It is a toxic and ozone-depleting substance.

STIMBR is the applicant in a reassessment of the recapture requirements for methyl bromide. The approval to import or manufacture the gas cannot be revoked as part of this process.

Recapture was required by October 2020. However, STIMBR applied for and was granted two previous extensions, citing the lead-in time needed for letters of credit required for log exports to India to continue.

STIMBR applied to the Decision-making Committee (DMC) for a third waiver, which has now been granted, extending the recapture deadline to 28 November 2021.

The DMC considers it appropriate to issue a further extension, in order to provide certainty to the industry until a decision is reached on the reassessment application. This decision, and any future requirements, will take priority over the waiver.

The Environmental Protection Authority is committed to being completely transparent in the reassessment process. All of the material before the DMC is available on our website.

Read the official record of this decision (PDF, 275 KB)
Read about the modified reassessment of methyl bromide

Deadline change for methyl bromide recapture

Source: Environmental Protection Authority

The gas is mainly used to fumigate logs and timber products before they are exported. It is a toxic and ozone-depleting substance.

STIMBR is the applicant in a reassessment of the recapture requirements for methyl bromide. The approval to import or manufacture the gas cannot be revoked as part of this process.

Recapture was required by October 2020. However, STIMBR applied for and was granted two previous extensions, citing the lead-in time needed for letters of credit required for log exports to India to continue.

STIMBR applied to the Decision-making Committee (DMC) for a third waiver, which has now been granted, extending the recapture deadline to 28 November 2021.

The DMC considers it appropriate to issue a further extension, in order to provide certainty to the industry until a decision is reached on the reassessment application. This decision, and any future requirements, will take priority over the waiver.

The Environmental Protection Authority is committed to being completely transparent in the reassessment process. All of the material before the DMC is available on our website.

Read the official record of this decision (PDF, 275 KB)
Read about the modified reassessment of methyl bromide

Taranaki Seaweek event: Living with albatross

Taranaki Seaweek event: Living with albatross

Source: Department of Conservation

Date:  01 March 2021

A professional conservation couple will give a public lecture in New Plymouth on their 30 years of experience observing albatross as part of Seaweek 2021.

Each summer for the last 30 years Department of Conservation (DOC) scientists Dr Kath Walker and Dr Graeme Elliott have worked on New Zealand sub-Antarctic islands where they have witnessed the decline of two of our country’s largest albatross species.

The George Mason Charitable Trust has sponsored the two scientists to be in New Plymouth during Seaweek 2021 (6 March to 14 March), to talk about their work on the Auckland and Antipodes Islands.

The scientists have in recent years concentrated on studying the Antipodean albatross, and discovered female birds are dying at a much faster rate than males. 

“The females feed in the same ocean area as the large high seas tuna and swordfish fleets,” Kath Walker says.

“In our study area there are now three times more males than females, which means there are a lot of lonely males, far fewer breeding pairs and consequently many less chicks produced than in the past: it’s a downward spiral for the population.” 

For their Seaweek talk they will describe how they have attached GPS satellite tracking devices to albatrosses to work out where the birds are dying at sea, and the impact these losses are having on the species’ populations. The trust has sponsored one of the GPS satellite devices used to monitor the birds.

The couple has contributed personal funds to help cover boat costs to get to the islands and have used holiday leave to keep the study going. 

“Studying albatrosses on remote islands isn’t cheap, and GPS satellite tracking devices come at quite a high cost. However, without this research we wouldn’t know why we are losing these birds nor how to try and stop the losses,” says Graeme Elliott.

The couple will give their public talk on 11 March from 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm at the New Plymouth Central Baptist Church, 89 Liardet Street, New Plymouth. There is a koha entry to help recover the Antipodean albatross.

View the Sentinel of the Ocean video by America’s Cup sailors Peter Burling and Blair Tuke describing the perilous state of the Antipodean albatross.

Contact

For media enquiries contact:

Email: media@doc.govt.nz

Work-related health update – February 2021

Work-related health update – February 2021

Source: Worksafe New Zealand

Our February work-related health update.

In this issue we cover:

  • Our COVID-19 update
  • New guidance: local exhaust ventilation and cytotoxic drugs
  • Reminder about the risks of leptospirosis infection
  • Recent media updates: partnership with NZ film industry and carbon monoxide poisoning death in shower
  • Who can help DIYers manage asbestos risks at home
  • HASANZ 2021 conference and ACC subsidy
  • MBIE’s bullying and harassment issues paper

Read the full issue(external link)