Sea side exclusion zone applied to Wellington’s wharves
Greater Wellington Regional Council’s Wellington Regional Harbourmaster Captain Mike Pryce has declared a sea side restricted zone alongside Wellington’s main wharves which excludes boaties from the area following Monday’s severe earthquake.
The exclusion zone will ensure public safety and allow undisturbed access for structural engineers to inspect the condition of the wharves.
Captain Pryce said the earthquake has caused damage to wharves and engineers need time and space to assess and plan any work required.
“Boaties need to keep away from potentially hazardous areas and provide clear space for commercial vessels working in this restricted zone,” said Captain Pryce.
The zone will be reviewed regularly and adjusted as required. It stretches from the Kings Wharf Pile light, to 200 metres east of the Thorndon Pile light and then to the mouth of the Kaiwharawhara stream. These areas are not usually frequented by recreational boats so the restrictions should not be overly intrusive, however this is considered a prudent step to keep harbour users safe.
A containment boom is being placed in part of this area to capture any debris that may come from part of the land that has slumped.
CentrePort chief executive Derek Nind said the company supported the directive from the regional council in its capacity as regulator.
“Monday’s 7.8 magnitude earthquake caused damage to our buildings, wharves and roadways with liquefaction and differential settlement in places. It’s important that people remain at a safe distance while our staff and structural engineers work through the issues. It’s also wise to take a precautionary approach while aftershocks continue.”
Mr Nind said ships would still be able to berth successfully at the port, with the prior consent of the Harbourmaster.
Greater Wellington Regional Council Chair Chris Laidlaw said: “As the major shareholder in the port, we are focused both on ensuring public safety and helping the port resume its role of driving economic development within the region. Restricting movement in the harbour and providing unfettered access for inspection will protect people and help speed up the process of resuming business.”
A copy of the Harbourmaster’s direction is available on the GW website.
For more information: GWRC media phone on 021 914 266