Tasman Leader : July 4th 2013
8 THE TASMAN LEADER, JULY 4, 2013 FEATURE www.gordonhandy.co.nz Ph: 543 8041 70 Gladstone Road, Richmond WINTER MOWER SERVICE On the L,D & selected X Series* mowers only. Mowers can be picked up for$15+gst within the Nelson/Murchison/Golden Bay areas. Bookings required. SERVICE INCLUDES Offer ends 30 September 2013. Prices quoted are for labour & parts on this offer only. $168+GST • Change engine oil & flter • Fuel flter • Spark plug • Check air cleaner • Check belts • Sharpen blades • Grease • Steamclean (workshop only) Mention this advert to receive the Service Special! Please enquire about other models. Book your mower in today for genuine John Deere parts and service! *X Series: X300 & X500 Series only. NEW LOCATION! GOT GAS? WANT GAS? It just takes one call to get started. Two 45kg LPG Cylinders including 6 months cylinder rental $195! Conditions apply. Offer is for New Customers only and a 24mth minimum term applies 03 546 6336 CALL ROCKGAS 5422920AB 5472400AA FLAMING HOT JULY SPECIALS OPEN EVERY DAY 9AM TO LATE AFTERNOON Cut and Bring this voucher to claim these and many other offers!!!! Conditions apply BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND -- your favourite Gourmet Specials changing each week in July at HOT HOT prices!! Call in now. Daily (Mon to Fri) Fresh Homemade Soup and Sandwich only $10.90 Daily (Mon to Fri 2.30 -- 3.30pm) 20% off Coffee and a Slice Daily (Mon to Fri 9 -- 10.30am) 20% off Full Breakfast Meals Barry digs in for long haul Two minutes w ith... Valley man: Barry Mogford has been clearing an active slip in the Graham Valley for almost a year. Dovedale s Barry Mogford and his crew from Dusty Diggers have been clawing away at a massive active slip in the Graham Valley Rd off and on over the last year. The slip closed the road late last June, cutting off vehicle access to four families living above it, who waited five months for the 36,000 tonnes of material to be cleared from the steep access road to Kahurangi National Park. Two smaller slips came down this year as a precursor to another massive slip which fell in last month s storm. This week The Leader ventured into the cold valley to talk to Barry about what it s like facing a sliding mountain on a daily basis. What's it like working here? I feel safe working on the slip now the large quartzite outcrop has come down. The first slip went about a third of the way up the hill -- you could walk it. But it just kept coming down. This slip has gone right to the top. There was a large overhanging rock outcrop after last month s slip -- we tried monsoon buckets of water and explosives. Andrew Smith abseiled down and jam- med 15 kilograms of explosives into the cracks -- there was bang, a puff of smoke and a shock wave -- nothing happened. It all came down in the last rain. You get a feel for a slip after a while. This one is a lot safer now. The community is awesome. I got a cake last week from Elfrieda and Kar- sten, who live above the slip, for our first anniversary. Everyone is so appreciative we are getting things done, and we get baking. I d like to thank them all for being patient -- and bringing baking. We hear your 24-tonne digger has been fully armoured. Tasman District Council, who share the road with the Department of Conser- vation, paid for 75 per cent of the bill. I paid the rest. Brightwater Engineering did a great job on it. I d like to thank them because without it this job would not have happened. You wouldn t be working there otherwise, the guys would have been jumping out the door and run- ning when the rocks came down. It s fully plated, with bullet-proof glass and a rear escape hatch. But it has already taken some knocks. One gave me a fright -- it hit the driver s door. It was the size of it -- the shock knocked the keys out of the ignition. You could never do this slip safely without armouring. How much rock has fallen here? The first slip was 36,000 tonnes and the most recent about 20,000 to 30,000 tonnes. The geo-tech guy reckons there is about another 500 tonne to come down, but that s not that much. The debris is being used for roading material. How did you get into contracting? I grew up with machinery on a farm in Wairoa and went on to become a mech- anic. I had my own business until all the freezing works closed and my customers disappeared. I went to sea and became a chief engineer. On my last five-month trip out I bought a six-tonne digger and a truck while I was still at sea. I was fish- ing for the Italians out of Wellington -- best people I ever worked for because they became good friends. Now I ve got four diggers, a truck and two dump trucks and contract to Fulton and Hogan. We hear you have shifted closer to the job. Yes. I was living in Nelson, but I don t like town. Then one of the locals opened up the historic shepherd s hut above the slip last year. I was there until Decem- ber, then I moved into a house in Dove- dale. It s close to work and I can get here in half an hour. It s a good community in Dovedale. I ve got a couple of sheep -- someone rustled them but I know who they are and they ll come back. Do you get many visitors here? We ve got the Road Closed sign up. We had the local cop up the other day. He was going to drive through but I was at the top throwing rock down. The [com- munity pest control group] Friends of Flora call before they drive up -- they are everywhere, always walking around -- they re doing a great job. The Depart- ment of Conservation come up to check out progress, but they call first. It s the weekend warriors who get caught out -- the slip will come down and they will get stuck. We had a guy who came walking down and said he had spent the last 15 days walking over from the West Coast. I gave him a ride to the [Pokororo] hall. And a couple of Aussies walked out saying they had got caught in the snow. They said they thought they were going to die. I gave them a lift to the highway to get them closer to civilisation. Someone came up a couple of weeks ago and started the digger and swung it around and around and set off the fire extinguishers and took the keys. They did the same in Tapawera and smashed 40 metres of fence. There s a community reward of $400 out for information. They came back a couple of days later and smashed every window in Karsten and Elfreida s car, which they park below the slip. What hurt was watching Elfreida walking back up the hill crying -- they had even smashed the headlights. We lock the gate now.
July 11th 2013