On Fire

Fonterra sues Icepak Group for $25M

Jan 18th, 2011 | By

Dairy giant Fonterra has been given permission to sue the owners of the Tamahere coolstore that exploded in 2008 for $25 million worth of cheese that it lost in the blaze.

Fonterra has already filed papers against the lessee of the building, Waikato Coldstorage Ltd (formerly Icepak Coolstores Ltd), as well as Mobile Refrigeration Specialists Ltd, which carried out refrigeration work at the cool store.

Now Justice Rodney Hansen has allowed Fonterra to include the owners and lessors of the Tamahere plant, Icepak Group Ltd, as an additional defendant in the action.

Fireman an example of healing

Jan 1st, 2011 | By

David Beanland reckons his left pinkie hurt the most. That’s saying something given half his face was blown off. And his hands. He was one of eight firefighters who turned up to a supposedly routine call out to a coolstore in Tamahere on April 5, 2008.

The rest is history. A gas leak ignited when the firefighters entered the industrial building, sparking a massive explosion. Senior station officer Derek Lovell was killed.

The blaze turned Mr Beanland, in his own words, into a “piece of charred meat”. In reality, he’s lucky to be alive.

Merv Neil returns to work

Dec 27th, 2010 | By

Merv Neil chose his own Christmas present this year – returning to work as a firefighter.

Neil, who suffered burns to 71 per cent of his body in the Icepak Coolstore explosion on April 5, 2008, at Tamahere celebrated his first day back on full duties on Christmas Day.

His goal has always been to return to work, but it’s been a long haul.

MRS drip feeds fine

Dec 19th, 2010 | By

The Tauranga-based refrigeration company fined more than $56,000 over the Icepak coolstore explosion at Tamahere will pay off its fine at the rate of $50 a week.

Mobile Refrigeration Specialists (MRS) was back in the Hamilton District Court last week seeking to have part of its fine remitted on the grounds of financial hardship.

MRS and Icepak Coolstores were fined $56,200 and $37,200 respectively when sentenced last December by Judge Robert Spear.

Court declines Mobile Refrig appeal

Nov 24th, 2010 | By

The Court of Appeal has declined an application by Mobile Refrigeration Specialists (MRS) for special leave to appeal against a fine and reparation order relating to the 2008 Icepak Coolstores fire at Tamahere.

MRS was responsible for the installation of a hydrocarbon-based refrigerant in the Tamahere coolstores, which exploded in an inferno in April 2008, killing fireman Derek Lovell and injuring several others.

MRS pleaded guilty in the Hamilton District Court to charges laid under the Health and Safety Act, and was fined $56,000 and ordered to pay reparation of $175,000.

Men’s health saved by whisker

Nov 17th, 2010 | By

Fifteen Hamilton firemen, including two involved in the Icepak Coolstores tragedy, are sacrificing their upper lips for the Movember mean’s health fundraiser.

Led by Adrian Brown and including Cameron Grylls, both injured at the 2008 Tamahere fire, the Red Watch Mo Bros are growing moustaches for the month to support the Movember Fundation, which raises funds and awareness for men’s health.

Neil notches up 25 years fire service

Oct 27th, 2010 | By

Firefighter Merv Neil, seriously injured in the Icepak Coolstores, Tamahere, fire has received a long service award.

Neil was one of six Hamilton firefighters to be presented with a 25-year service gold star medal at Labour Weekend but in his case it was one year late.

Waikato Times apologises

Sep 14th, 2010 | By

The Waikato Times today apologised for inaccuracies in an August 20 story on a summary judgment application by Brian Liddell against Waikato Coolstorage, formerly Icepak Coolstores.

Tower climb tribute to firefighters

Sep 11th, 2010 | By

Firefighters commemorated the September 11, 2001 attacks in New York with a memorial climb up the BNZ Tower in Auckland’s CBD this morning that also remembered fireman Derek Lovell who died following the Tamahere blast of 2008.

Erma tightens LPG rules

Sep 8th, 2010 | By

Environmental regulators say they have tightened rules requiring odours to be added to LPG gas, improvements to the design of refrigeration using it, signage at those sites, and constraints on the quantities that can be stored indoors in the wake of the Icepak tragedy.