CTV building should never have gone up, says husband

Posted 19 Aug 2012 by MediaStuff Popular
Posted in Media , Royal Commission


The collapsed Canterbury Television building was "doomed from the start", a victim's widower says.

An eight-week royal commission hearing into the failure of the Christchurch highrise, which killed 115 people in the February 2011 earthquake, heard its final witness on Friday.

More than 80 witnesses gave evidence.

Brian Kennedy, whose wife Faye died in the collapse, said his conclusion, having heard most of the evidence, was the building should not have been built.

"This was doomed from the the start," he said.

"If half those [errors] happened to any other building, people need to know. It's scary in a way."

The hearing was "quite helpful" and presented evidence that "made you sit up and take notice".

"I'm sure a lot the families who attended thought it was going to be pretty dry, but it was totally different," Kennedy said.

"So many errors, discrepancies, innuendo and possible lies have emerged that I found it hard to believe that all of this could happen to one building over such a short period."

Some witnesses "lacked sincerity", he said.

Kennedy attended most hearing days, but took a break for the final two weeks.

"I would have liked to have been there [to the end], but it's like when you fill up a glass, it's getting near the top. That's where I'm feeling I'm at now."

Closing submissions will be heard on September 5. The commissioners' final report will be presented to the governor-general in November.

Coroner Gordon Matenga will conduct the inquest into the deaths of all who died in the CTV building, with the emphasis on six victims, who initially survived the collapse but could not be rescued.

The hearing will resume in Christchurch on October 29 and run for two weeks, then reconvene for a final week at the beginning of December.

Last year the inquest looked at the circumstances surrounding all the deaths. The hearing was adjourned in September, pending further investigation, but no finding has been released.

"The inquest will focus on the circumstances around the six tragic deaths of those who were known to have been alive for a period of time after the building collapsed but were unable to be rescued," Matenga said.

"It will not look at any of the matters currently subject to the royal commission of inquiry into the collapse of the building."

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