What residents need to know about basic services

2:10 pm on 15 March 2011

Water has been restored to 94% of Christchurch homes. Power is back on for most customers outside the CBD.

Various organisations have provided telephone numbers to call for assistance on welfare and basic services.

Numbers to call

Anyone wanting information about government assistance should ring 0800 779 997.

The Red Cross number for people worried about friends and family in Christchurch is 0800 RED CROSS or 0800 733 276.

Plunket has set up a line for people concerned about children. The number is 0800 939 922.

Disabled people in need of help should call Disability Support Services on 0800 373 664.

People seeking counselling services should ring 0800 LIFELINE or 0800 5433 5463.

The Accident Compensation Corporation number for people who want assistance with earthquake injury claims is 0800 101 996.


As at Sunday 13 March, water was restored to 94% of Christchurch homes. There was no mains water in parts of Dallington, Avonside, Avondale and West New Brighton.

Civil Defence is continuing to advise people to limit their water use and to boil drinking water, regardless of where it comes from. Alternatively, use 5 drops of household bleach to 1 litre of water or 1 teaspoon of bleach per 10 litres of water and leave for 30 minutes before drinking.

Water is available at the welfare centre at Pioneer Stadium in Spreydon, and also from tanks, pump stations and tankers. A full list of collection points and times is on the Canterbury Earthquake website. Bring your own containers.

Water reservoirs in the region have passed checks for structural soundness and are slowly filling up. The city's water supply is being chlorinated and this will cease once the supply is safe.

Portable showers are available at six locations including Cowles Stadium, Wilding Park, Avondale Golf Course, South New Brighton Motor Camp, New Brighton corner of Hawke St and Shaw Ave and Shirley Rugby Club.

They are open from 7am to 7pm. You'll need to bring your own soap and other personal items.


On 13 March power was largely on to areas outside the Christchurch central business district.

The power company, Orion, says 550 households are still without power outside the CBD area.

An Orion spokesperson Rob Jamieson says 350 of those are in hardest hit eastern suburbs and 200 are spread through out the rest of the region.

Orion says the remaining faults outside the CBD will take time to find and repair and that each one will affect only one household or a small group of households.

Orion says power is still off to about half of the CBD, mainly due to restricted access for safety reasons as advised by Civil Defence and the Fire Service.

Orion would like anyone outside of the CBD who still has no power to call them on 03 363 9898.

The network in the eastern and southern suburbs remain very fragile and people should remain prepared for further power cuts.

Orion advises people who are leaving their home, or do not have the power back on yet, to turn off the power at the mains, unplug appliances at the wall and turn off the stove.

The Fire Service is urging those returning to the city to be cautious about turning their power back on. You should check that appliances are in a safe condition and have an electrician inspect the wiring before switching power back on at the mains.

The service says some fires have started in buildings as electricity was restored and people need to take care. Such fires can accidentally start when, for example, a heater remains overturned as power resumes.


Toilets now flush in about 84% of the city, but residents are still being told to flush sparingly.

Extra portaloos are arriving from the United States and being distributed, while more chemical toilets were distributed over the weekend, with a focus on Avondale, Bromley and Avonside.

By Monday, 17,000 toilets will have been delivered.

Residents using chemical toilets are being asked not to empty them into portaloos but to wrap the waste securely and dispose of it in their red rubbish bins or at collection tanks. Those without toilets are asked to bury liquid waste.

Disposal tanks for the contents of chemical toilets are now at 44 sites around the city.

The number for those needing portaloos is 941 8999.

The Rangiora Earthquake Express will deliver small toilet packs containing a sealable 20-litre pail with seat, rubbish bags, hand sanitiser and a toilet roll. If you would like one, or want to make a donation, call 0800 566 397.

Health/medical treatment

Free urgent medical treatment for people with quake-related illnesses has been extended.

The Pegasus 24-hour medical centre in Bealey Ave is open, as is the Moorhouse Medical Centre, the Riccarton Clinic and after-hours centre, and the Ferrymead Medical Centre. The Salisbury Health Centre has moved to the corner of Bealey Ave and Madras St.

Pegasus Health says people who have moved to other parts of Canterbury may pay local GP charges rather than a casual fee.

Canterbury District Health Board says silt dust from liquefaction should be treated as contaminated but is not a serious health risk. If exposed to it, wash your hands and use hand sanitiser.

Meals on Wheels

Meals on Wheels resumed in Christchurch on Tuesday 1 March. Recipients who have not had a call should phone 03 337 7797 to confirm they are at home and need meals.

Advice, assistance and accommodation

Ten non-residential recovery assistance centres are located at: Aranui Recreation Centre, Nga Hau E Wha Marae in Aranui, Linwood Community Link, Parklands Baptist Church, St Faith's Hall in New Brighton, the Shirley Rugby Club, the Sydenham Community Centre, the Lyttelton Recreation Centre, the Mt Pleasant Yacht Club and the Old Boys' Collegian Cricket Pavilion at Hagley Oval.

Work and Income, Housing New Zealand, Christchurch City Council, Red Cross and the Salvation Army have representatives available at the centres.

Organisations wanting to offer accommodation should ring 0800 HELP 00 or 0800 435 700.

Emergency money

Civil emergency grants are available from Work and Income for quake-affected people.

The payments have been averaging $165 for essential items such as food, clothing and bedding. You don't need to be on a benefit to get the grants.

Work and Income offices are open for emergency assistance at Riccarton (76 Riccarton Rd), Hornby (25 Shands Rd), Rangiora (corner of Good and Blake streets), Shirley (203-205 Hills Rd), Linwood (154 Aldwins Rd), New Brighton (26 Beresford St), Kaiapoi (77 Hilton St) and Ashburton (corner of Cass and Moore streets). Mobile teams are also operating.

The Government helpline number is 0800 779 997.


Public payphone calls remain free for local, national and mobile calls.

Telecom has extended free national fixed-to-fixed calling to residential landline customers in Christchurch and neighbouring towns until the end of March.

New Zealand Post resumed delivering mail on Tuesday 1 March and hoped to have pick-up points for undeliverable mail by the following week. The mail redirection service will be free for Christchurch residents.

In an effort to keep track of the number of missing people, the Red Cross is asking people to call Red Cross numbers such as 0800 RED CROSS to let them know if they're planning to leave the city.

The society says concerned neighbours may report people missing, so if people get in touch to report their movement that will help.


Metro Bus services will continue be free to all passengers until Sunday 27 March

The frequency of most of the bus routes currently in operation increased from Monday 14 March, Metro says.

Operating hours have also be extended, meaning bus services will now operate from 6am until 10pm. The extended operating hours will further reduce traffic congestion as well as support schools and universities as they recommence.

Metro says it is conscious that some areas are still without Metro bus services. It is reviewing road and bridge conditions daily, and as repairs are undertaken we will recommence further services.

For full information on services go to the public transport website.

Sections of more than 60 roads are either closed, have partial closures or restrictions.

Affected roads include parts of main routes such as Colombo St, Moorhouse Ave, Fitzgerald Ave, Riccarton Rd and Avonside Drive.

Two bridges are closed and 12 have partial closures or restrictions.

The Lyttelton Tunnel is restricted to emergency and essential vehicles and Lyttelton residents. Please make essential road journeys only.

Fire ban

A total fire ban remains in place across Christchurch and surrounding areas.

The Fire Service says it has to remain in place during the recovery operation as it does not want resources to be diverted from the central city.


The SPCA has advised the following animal welfare contacts:

Serious injury or illness of any animal found in distress: 349-7057 (day) or 366-3886 (night). Stray or lost dogs can be notified to 021 240 8310.

Lost animals can be logged on the internet at www.petsonthenet.co.nz or www.trademe.co.nz or by calling 0800 567 8763.


Rubbish is being collected as usual by the council.

For further details, including recycling collections, check the Canterbury Earthquake website.

Carpets, furniture and demolition waste such as bricks will not be picked up and must be disposed of at local transfer stations.