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Coastal shipping industry highlights role after quake

Friday 11th March 2011

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The Shipping Federation today highlighted the role coastal shipping played in getting goods to Christchurch after the magnitude 6.3 earthquake on February 22.

The industry has been battling to survive against road transport and rail but the federation said ships were quick to deliver goods after the earthquake.

Silver Fern Shipping made two fuel deliveries to the Port of Timaru to cater for fuel shortages when demand for fuel rose in the Christchurch area. Aviation fuel was delivered as soon as Port of Lyttelton opened.

Coastal shipping company Pacifica Shipping was the first containership operator to berth at Lyttelton following the earthquake, delivering 100,000 litres of bottled water and medical supplies.

Both Cook Strait shipping operators, the Interislander and Strait Shipping, prioritised freight to enable emergency services - including Ambulance, Army, Fire Service, Police and Search and Rescue - to be across Cook Strait and on the ground in Christchurch by daylight the following morning.

They continued to prioritise the movement of earthquake-related equipment.

Shipping Federation head Sheryl Ellison said she hoped the Government would give due consideration to the needs of the industry in its current review of the National Infrastructure Plan, because New Zealand was reliant on shipping for both the domestic and international supply chains.



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