Long road to recovery for Kaikoura businesses

By Taroi Black

The wait continues for some stranded locals and tourists trying to use inland route 70 in Kaikoura since the 7.8 earthquakes which struck the area and left thousands homeless. While some remain in Kaikoura to assist in its recovery some believe it could take years before businesses are back on track.

Further road assessments have been delayed and chances of Kaikoura locals getting out by car via Inland Route 70 are still to be confirmed. Civil Defense has only given access to emergency and critical support services.  

"Yeah there's only one way in and out at the moment."

The trauma earlier this week was still clear in the minds of some of the locals.

Resident Alisha Sullivan says, “It was a terrifying noise, it was loud, everything was moving together you could hardly stand. We had to brace ourselves on the door and quickly make our way out to the front."

Sullivan has decided to stay and assist in the town's recovery with other locals prioritising their businesses.

“We haven't been open for two days now and until they get Inland road open we're going to be closed for quite some time.”

Whale Watch Kaikoura General Manager, Kauahi Ngapora said on Kawe Kōrero last night they did not qualify for the relief package this week. 

The $7.5mil government package will assist smaller companies under 20 staff for Kaikoura.