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Havelock North Inquiry


By now most industry participants will be aware the Government has established an Inquiry into the Havelock North drinking water incident. The Inquiry will report in two stages. The first stage will be an examination of what went wrong in Havelock North. The second stage will be to report on what systemic changes, if any, are required to the system of drinking water management to ensure such an event is not repeated. The Association will be involved in both stages.

The Association has established a small review group of industry participants to assist staff in responding to the Inquiry. The Association has decided not to submit Evidence in the first stage of the Inquiry, as it is pur view is there is nothing significant we can contribute to investigating what went wrong.

However, Noel Roberts and I will attend the Inquiry in the week beginning 30 January 2017 in Hastings. We will report back to the membership via Pipeline as the Inquiry progresses (note there has been a two month delay to the start of the Inquiry due to court action between two of the parties).

Parties who wish to submit documents of fact to the Inquiry are required to lodge these with the Secretariat to the Inquiry. These have been posted to the Inquiry website by the secretariat at: https://www.dia.govt.nz/List-of-issues-for-Stage-One. The Water NZ website will also be a source of information, especially media reports: http://www.waternz.org.nz/havelock

Evidence to the Inquiry will not be placed on either the DIA website or the Water New Zealand website until it is presented at the Inquiry. However, shortly after its presentation it will be posted by the Secretariat to the DIA website, along with a transcript of what was said. This will cover cross examination etc.

It’s likely that the Inquiry will produce their first report into what went wrong in the first quarter of 2017.

If anyone would like to know more about what evidence we are planning to call in Stage two of the Inquiry, or about the general approach being taken by the Association, please contact John Pfahlert at ceo@waternz.org.nz or call 021 150 9763