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New Zealand's Worst Disasters


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Table of Contents


1. The big one: The Wellington earthquake 1855
2. Of shipwrecks and flooding: The great storm 1868
3. No easy escape: The Cafe Chantant fire 1879
4. Blown off the tracks: The Rimutaka rail accident 1880
5. The big bang: The Tarawera eruption 1886
6. 'The New Zealand Death': The Motu River canoe sinking 1990
7. Things that go bang in the night: The Upper Hutt explosion 1914
8. A pall of gloom: Ralph's Mine disaster 1914
9. Without a trace: The White Island explosion 1914
10. For as far as the eye could see: The Raetihi bushfire 1918
11. But for a boulder: The Ongarue rail accident 1923
12. Bad vibrations: The Napier earthquake 1931
13. A wall of water: The Kopuawhara flash flood 1938
14. Out of mind, out of sight: The Seacliff fire 1942
15. Too much speed: The Hyde rail accident 1943
16. The secret crash: The crash of USAF Liberator at Whenuapai 1943
17. Out of a black sky: The Frankton tornado 1948
18. A rogue wave: The sinking of the Ranui 1950
19. Hollow victory: Wellington to Lyttelton yachting tragedy 1951
20. Because it was there: The Mount Egmont climbing accident 1953
21. The tragedy of the Royal Mustangs: The crash of two formation fighters 1953
22. The weeping waters: The Tangiwai rail disaster 1953
23. Battling the 'Kaimai Breeze': The Kaimai air accident 1963
24. Any port in a storm: The sinking of the Wahine 1968
25. Blind Faith: The Erebus air accident 1979
26. A trio of tragedies: The Marlborough air accidents 1985, 1986, 1996
27. 'She'll be right': The Cave Creek platform collapse 1995
28. Sure to rise: Tongariro canyoning tragedy 2008
29. Cold comfort at the coalface: The Pike River Mine explosion 2010
30. On shaky ground: The Christchurch earthquake 2011
31. Sky High: The Carterton air balloon tragedy 2012


About the Author

Graham Hutchins has been writing books for over thirty years. Most of these have been non-fiction, covering such subjects as rugby, cricket, popular music and railways. In 2006 he published Highwater: Floods in New Zealand. He lives in Hamilton. Russell Young worked as an accountant in Te Kuiti for 30 years before moving to Marlborough in 2004, where he now conducts a small home-based practice which allows time for other pastimes, including flying. In 2013 he published The Story of Te Kuiti.

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