Tough forecast for race sailors
The annual PIC Coastal Classic sailing race promises to be a hard slog as the 175 competing boats are set to tackle north to northeast winds forecast for the 119 nautical mile race from Auckland to Russell tomorrow. Last year, team Beau Geste sailed the iconic coastal race in their giant Mod 70 Trimaran in exceptional conditions to set a new speed record of 5hrs 13 sec, but this year's top boats are expected hours after that. Starting from 9..30am tomorrow in the vicinity of Devonport Wharf, competitors have until 3pm Saturday to finish.
Heart attack suspected in diver's death
The sudden death of a diver from a suspected heart attack at a Northland beach has been referred to the Coroner.
Emergency services in the area were called to an initial report of a cardiac arrest at Waimamaku beach, in the Hokianga district, on Tuesday afternoon.
A Northland police spokesperson confirmed the death has been referred to the Coroner.
According to police, a number of people were diving off the beach when the diver's body was discovered.
The deceased was airlifted from the beach to a waiting ambulance. The Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust service was also called to the spot just after 4pm.
Police are still making inquiries into the incident.
Whangārei Heads weed blitz
People wanting to know how they can join the fight again weeds at Whangārei Heads can do so this month. Weed Action is holding a free weed control workshop on October 31 at the Parua Bay Community Centre, from 9.45am to 3pm. If you are keen to attend email email@example.com by October 26.
Five injured in SH10 collision
Five people were taken to hospital with minor injuries following a near head-on collision in Kerikeri yesterday afternoon. Emergency services were called to State Highway 10 near Waimate North Rd after a car containing four young women collided with a vehicle being driven by a man in his mid-50s, Kerikeri Fire Brigade station officer Andy Hamberger said. The occupants of the vehicles were transported to Bay of Islands Hospital.
Medical cannabis use soaring
Northlanders make up 4 per cent of medicinal cannabis applications nationwide, according to government data. The number of medicinal cannabis prescriptions nationally issued by doctors soared 84 per cent in the first six months of 2020.
Kaitaia Health Centre on the move
The Kaitaia Health Centre, in Puckey Ave, will relocate to Te Hiku Hauora's GP clinic in Redan Rd, between the hospital and Kaitaia College, on November 23, opening 8am to 5pm weekdays. The new phone number will be (09) 408-0049 but the existing number, (09) 408-1300, will be kept for some time while patients adapt.
The Northern Advocate yesterday published a story about Northland Regional Council's decision to bring in Māori constituencies.
The council voted to bring these in and must publicly advertise its intention and also that the electors can demand a poll on the matter. This brief clarifies technicalities around what's involved in the poll being able to happen. A citizen-initiated poll can only go ahead if 5 per cent of NRC electors demand this happens. That means 6027 of the council's 120,548 electors are needed before it can proceed.
The poll outcome is binding on the council decision to bring in the constituencies. It can overturn the council decision if the majority of electors polled vote against it. That means a simple majority of a single vote, in what's an optional voting opportunity.
The poll will cost NRC $240,000.