Mataura mill’s ma­sonry mishap


‘‘Some­one killed.’’

Lor­raine White was driv­ing past the for­mer paper mill build­ing at Mataura last week when she saw large chunks of con­crete on the road.

They had fallen from the build­ing’s chim­ney, en­dan­ger­ing pass­ing mo­torists or pedes­tri­ans.

‘‘They would have come down with a bloody big bang. They’re not heavy but you wouldn’t want to be un­der them com­ing from that height.’’

She had com­plained about the state of the chim­ney sev­eral years ago af­ter con­crete fell off it and said she still has con­cerns about its safety.

‘‘They just came and put a fence around it. They’ve had it painted and he [the owner, Dunedin busi­ness­man Greg Pater­son] must have spent a lot of money on it but they haven’t done any­thing about the chim­ney.

‘‘There’s a big crack run­ning down it now and that can’t be good. I reckon it’s a hazard in the town.’’

She planned to in­form the Gore District Coun­cil of the prob­lem.

The mills were built in the mid 1870’s and closed in 2000.

The build­ings are cur­rently be­ing used to store ou­vea pre­mix which be­longed to Taha Asia Pa­cific, a com­pany which was could get hurt, or placed into Au­gust 2015.

Gore District Coun­cil build­ing con­trol man­ager Rus­sell Pater­son said coun­cil had re­ceived a no­tice that ‘‘some­thing was wrong’’ with the chim­ney last week.

‘‘We in­ves­ti­gated it last week and con­tacted the owner and the man­ager there and asked them to get some­thing sorted this week.

Ma­sonry had fallen off the re­ceiver­ship in chim­ney be­fore, he said.

‘‘We’ve looked at it and found that it was no more oner­ous than last time so we’ve in­di­cated that safety fences need to be put up at the bot­tom of it.’’

The coun­cil could is­sue a no­tice to fix, which re­quired im­me­di­ate ac­tion to be taken, but that was not nec­es­sary in this in­stance, he said.

‘‘We’ve talked to the owner and said that a more long-term so­lu­tion needs to be found to stop this from oc­cur­ring.’’

Parts of the mill had a build­ing war­rant of fit­ness.

‘‘The parts of it that are oc­cu­pied do, but I’m not sure ex­actly where the pre­mix is be­ing stored in there.’’

Newslink has at­tempted to con­tact Pater­son but has been un­suc­cess­ful.

Lor­raine White with a piece of con­crete that has fallen from the chim­ney of the for­mer paper mill build­ing.

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