This morning my partner and I went on the CBD red zone bus tour. When I first heard that CERA were putting on these tours there was no doubt in my mind that I would go on one if possible. Like everyone else, when I rang CERA I got the safety warning about how dangerous this tour could be if the worst happened – (a big quake) – and had to agree that it was ok that I ‘might not survive’. There were a few moments after I made the booking, that I thought maybe it wasn’t such a good idea – but like most people I thought it was highly unlikely. We were taken through the safety message again when we were all seated on the bus and given an opportunity to get off bus should we have second thoughts – but no one took up the offer. So it was off we went. I guess I felt more ‘anticipation and excitement’ than anything else – oh and perhaps a bit of stress about getting some decent photos. Prior to getting onto the bus I had already worked out that sitting on the right hand side of the bus and at the rear of it would give me the best chance of photographing the Cathedral. So pretty much all of the photos are shot looking out of the right hand side of the bus. I didn’t feel any grief or high emotion on the trip, as I think what I had seen already of the damage had prepared me pretty well for what I was going to see. I took some video as well and there are a few expletives here and there as I gasp at how big some of the cleared sections are.
I honestly could not decide what pictures to leave out, so I have included a copy of most of the photos I took, as I am conscious that different people will be interested in the fate of quite different streets or buildings.
Here’s an excellent video of the tour by Warwick Isaacs from CERA.