Mining could resume at Pike River without recovery

Pike River Coal receivers have confirmed mining could resume at the site without recovering the remains of the 29 men entombed there since November.

Next week the police are scheduled to hand over control to the receivers, and families of the killed miners fear the section of the mine where their loved ones remain could be sealed permanently.

John Fisk, from one of the receivers, PricewaterhouseCoopers, said if it becomes impossible to re-enter the mine where the men are, the company will consider reopening another part of the mine to again make it a commercial entity.

He said decisions about the mine’s future are still a long way off and his focus is on stabilising the mine’s sustainability.

Entry to the mine has most recently been delayed by the Christchurch earthquake.

Meanwhile, political parties in New Zealand are calling on the government to deliver the promised economic stimulus package for the West Coast to recover from the disaster.

According to the government, the package promised by the end of January, is almost complete.

The West Coast Greens MP. Kevin Hague said he would not criticise the government while it is working so hard to deal with the tragedy, but that the stimulus package should have been a higher priority and the Labor MP, Damian O’Connor, said each month without the stimulus is harder for businesses that lost money in the disaster.

On Friday it was announced that the families of the 29 victims will each receive a minimum of $190 00 from the Pike River Disaster Relief Fund.

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