New Zealand was struck by another deadly earthquake at the weekend, hitting a massive 7.5 magnitude on the richter scale. The quake which hit first in North Canterbury at about midnight local time, destroyed homes and other buildings leaving nothing much but rubble and hysteric locals scattered across the streets looking for loved ones and strangers who are missing within the catastrophic disaster. But as they searched this Monday morning, there were massive aftershocks from the quake, creating even more danger, panic and destruction, making it a job for even more rescue teams.
Search and rescue teams have been tirelessly at work in an attempt to save as many people as possible, being joined by Rugby legend Richie McCaw who has also been a massive part of the rescue attempt across the South Island. McCaw who retired from professional Rugby last year, where he captained the All Blacks on 110 of his 148 caps for the Kiwis; also making him the most capped test Rugby player in history.
Although, out of his retirement he took up the hobby of being a commercial helicopter pilot, big strange eh’ but I guess you can do what you want with that money. This rich mans’ hobby made him the perfect person to become part of the search and rescue attempt, flying rescue teams into the hit regions.
Richie’s first destination was the town of Kaikoura, where one person was taken by the disaster; later going on to take the Fire Service North and South of the town to the slips, accounting for everyone both found and lost. The 35 year old said that the damage was “obvious” from above. “There were big cracks in the road, cracks in the side of the hills, and obviously slips,” he said. “At one point, the railway was way out over the sea… It would not have been a nice place to be at midnight last night.” This account truly puts the size of disaster into perspective, moving anything in it’s sight out of the way as it moved it’s way through the Earthquake prone South Island.
We wish the best of luck to Richie and EVERY search and rescue participant in their rescue efforts. We hope everyone is well in this awful time and our wishes go out to the people effected…