Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key has said 10,000 homes in Christchurch cannot
be rebuilt after the 22 February earthquake.
also announced a national memorial day of 18 March, with events planned for
Christchurch’s Hagley Park.
treasury department said that quake recovery would cost the country $11
death toll, at 166 so far, is expected to rise to around 200 as rescue work
are being identified using fingerprints, DNA, dental records and other personal
items such as jewellery.
painstaking process could take months to complete, officials say, adding to the
misery of relatives waiting for news.
say there were cases after previous disasters and accidents overseas where the
wrong body was returned to the family, compounding the grief of everyone
avoid such traumatic mistakes, the authorities in New Zealand insist their work
will be meticulous.
Key said New Zealanders must “brace ourselves” for the probable
demolition of many heritage buildings as well as homes.
said some parts of the city could not be rebuilt because of liquefaction – the
weakening of the soil due to the rising of silt and water sparked by the quake.
Earthquake Commission has begun land assessments and will begin assessing
houses from this week.
private building supply company has also begun emergency repairs to houses as
part of a contribution to quake relief, Mr Key said.
tourism operators have meanwhile offered cheap flights and accommodation to
quake victims in the Pacific Islands territory.