The Wellington City Council says it has heard back from 62 of the 80 CBD building owners requiring more invasive engineering checks after November's quake.

Today marks three months since the November 14 quake in Kaikoura and Wellington building owners had until last Friday to complete more invasive checks ordered by the council.

Wellington Mayor Justin Lester said the rest have asked for a one- or two-week extension.

Lester said council was "very comfortable" allowing the time extensions, which are needed for a number of reasons, including the size of the buildings making it a bigger job to assess, or more complex, building owners choosing to do more invasive testing than expected, or owners choosing to have the engineer reports peer reviewed.

Advertisement

So far, however, no further major damage has been found.

Chief resilience officer Mike Mendonca said all the building owners were doing "the right thing".

Council did not anticipate taking any action against owners for failing to meet deadlines, but it would reserve its decision for when all the reports were back in, he said.

Reports revealed a range of damage in some of the buildings, including issues with floors.

"Where urgent repair is required, building owners are doing that in all cases as we speak," he said.

A third of the 80 buildings sustained some type of damage, which was "not surprising, given the magnitude of this earthquake", Mendonca said.

"We appreciate that this has been at best inconvenient for building owners and at worst, really stressful, but we're really glad we had a look."

The council ordered the owners of 80 buildings that have four to 15 floors, reinforced-concrete structures, precast floors, and built on soft soils with flexible design to do more invasive testing after the quake.

Building owners had until mid-January to acknowledge the letters from council and February 10 to return their in-depth engineers' reports.

Meanwhile, the Earthquake Commission has received residential claims from Auckland to Invercargill after Kaikoura quake.

Today is the last day for property owners to make non-commercial claims after the 7.8 magnitude shake.

So far, the commission has received 25,000 applications.

Good uptake of support package

There has been good uptake of the $3.76 million support package for Kaikoura and Marlborough families, Health Minister Jonathan Coleman said.

"In Kaikoura and Hurunui just over 3,500 residents have accessed free GPs visits. Canterbury DHB's specialist mental health team have also made just over 300 appointments, including visits with children and families."

"In Marlborough, Ward, Seddon and Kekerengu just over 400 people have accessed free GPs visits. This service is being supported by free mental health care packages which include extended GP visits and three counselling sessions. To date 145 care packages have been prescribed.

"We know that after a serious earthquake, people can feel stressed and anxious for a long time after the event. The psychosocial recovery needs of the communities will change over time," Coleman said.

"To help ensure we're responding to these changes community workshops are also being held to support families, workplaces and schools in recognising and understanding stress and anxiety.

"Work also continues to expand to the successful All Right? campaign, which was developed in response to the Canterbury earthquakes, to the Marlborough region."

The $3.76m package is made up of four key areas: providing free or subsidised GP visits until May; boosting mental health services; hiring additional health practitioners which includes mental health experts; and paying the balance of the Kaikōura Health Te Ha o Te Ora health centre.

Recovery is Kaikoura

Meanwhile, encouraging recovery progress is being made in communities affected by the earthquake.

Civil Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee said the government and local authorities are working alongside not-for-profit organisations and businesses on a multi-pronged recovery effort.

"In the last three months, the government has provided financial assistance, temporary accommodation and psychosocial support services to those who need it," Brownlee said.

"We're seeing good progress dealing with the massive slips north of Kaikoura. We have a big task ahead of us to restore full access on SH1 before Christmas 2017.

"As of yesterday, the Earthquake Commission has received more than 25,000 claims, and is working closely with insurance companies to resolve all claims for customers across the country.

"The agreement with insurers has streamlined the approach for managing home and content claims. So far, EQC has settled around $11 million of overcap claims.

"The New Zealand Defence Force has sent eight hydrographers to Kaikoura to survey the area's sea floor and map the shifts caused by the earthquake.

"The results of the hydrographic survey, which uses the Navy's single beam echo sounder and side scan sonar, will be used by Land Information New Zealand to update the nautical chart of the Kaikoura Peninsula.

"With actual depths now significantly less than charted depths, nautical charts are no longer accurate and safe navigation in the region has become an issue.

"The NZDF mobilised 815 personnel, 11 aircraft and four ships to support the disaster relief operation in Kaikoura."

National Recovery manager Dave Brash said it's been a big job getting the sites affected by slips safe ready to be cleared.

"But now the excavators are on site and work has started on clearing the slips from the road.

"KiwiRail has reopened the line between Spring Creek and Lake Grassmere and freight services from the Dominion Saltworks have resumed.

"More than 700 sites on the Main North Line need work and seismic activity is continuing.

"At the same time, diggers have removed more than 5000 cubic metres of material from the Kaikoura harbour to deepen the channel.

"A $5 million government grant is funding the repair and upgrade of the harbour. The detailed design for the harbour restoration is being discussed with the operators who use it and will be agreed to in the next couple of weeks," Brash said.

Government response to the November 14 earthquake:

· $17.5m business support package in the Kaikoura, Wellington and Hurunui districts;

· $5m primary sector support;

· $3.7m boost to health services in Kaikoura and Marlborough;

· $3m in additional funding for GNS;

· $3m fund to subsidise reinforcing masonry facades;

· $500,000 for temporary accommodation allowance;

· $199,500 funding for public restroom facilities at Springs Junction;

· 20 temporary housing units used after the Christchurch earthquakes offered to farmers with significantly damaged homes.