Having friends, family and workplace support is a key part to an under-fire teenage apprentice dealing with the enormity of having likely caused the devastating SkyCity blaze.

A teenager - possibly an apprentice - is believed to have accidentally left a blowtorch unattended after going on a smoko break on Tuesday afternoon, igniting a blaze that took Fire and Emergency NZ nearly a week to extinguish and causing gridlock in the city for days.

A source told the Herald the teenager, believed 18, was working for a sub-contractor and after realising his mistake went back to his work spot only to discover a fire had already started.

"The poor guy is in tatters ... he's completely shattered," the source said.

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Psychologist Sara Chatwin says the teen apprentice believed responsible for the accidental SkyCity blaze will be feeling mortified by what happened. Photo / File
Psychologist Sara Chatwin says the teen apprentice believed responsible for the accidental SkyCity blaze will be feeling mortified by what happened. Photo / File

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Psychologist Sara Chatwin said the realisation that you've caused a blaze that big would be "pretty horrific".

"He will be in shock and disbelief that he actually did that because as much as he left the blowtorch on or whatever he did, he will have been trained that obviously you don't do that - so obviously it's a big oversight that he will feel terrible about."

SkyCity Entertainment Group's chief executive Graeme Stephens said he was concerned about the worker alleged to have been involved.

"We have been worried about that person. We don't know who it is. There's certainly no witch hunt from our side. We have a genuine concern for their mental health and wellbeing.

The roof of the under construction SkyCity convention centre burns last Tuesday afternoon. Photo / Niwa
The roof of the under construction SkyCity convention centre burns last Tuesday afternoon. Photo / Niwa

"We're not trying to find them and get them back. We don't know the cause of the fire. We have concern for anyone involved. We're absolutely of that view. We need to get to the cause, obviously."

Chatwin said the teenager would be going through "a whole raft of stages of this that and the next thing before he comes out through the other side and makes sense of what's happened and just not beat himself up".

However, it was a case of somebody making a mistake.

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"Where you use humans for jobs you're going to have human error, so that's just a fact of life, whether it was him or somebody else.

"Human error will always be involved in what humans do and we live with those mistakes every day and unfortunately some are bigger than others but it will obviously have a massive effect on his self esteem and how he's feeling about himself at the present moment because it's such a huge deal."

Black smoke cloaks Auckland city from the fire at the SkyCity convention centre. Photo / Michael Craig
Black smoke cloaks Auckland city from the fire at the SkyCity convention centre. Photo / Michael Craig

She said she hoped he had not only a supportive family life, but also friends and work which allowed him to talk, as it was "an enormous situation".

"I just think hopefully he has a really supportive work environment and they talk to him about it and offer him counselling or people to talk to so that he feels not alone in all of this.

"A big part of him getting through this successfully and not feeling really bad about it and really low and perhaps falling into depressive behaviour ... is that anyone could have done this.

"If you have the support around you in the workplace and your friends and family members ... you feel less alone and more secure and you've got some people to share the burden with.

Firefighters hose down the portion of the building on Wellesley St on Friday. Photo / Alex Burton
Firefighters hose down the portion of the building on Wellesley St on Friday. Photo / Alex Burton

The fire set the CBD back a few days and attracted attention from media all around the world, which was a lot for a young person to take in.

"I also feel very bad for him and some people will understand that this is an incredibly serious situation but there will always be naysayers and people who like to blame, and of course when it's been identified that a person has been responsible for something, blame is easy.

"He needs to get family and good friends close and the workplace to offer as much support as they can because he will get through this, but it will be very difficult."

Chatwin said emotions of guilt and beating yourself up were a waste of time because it wouldn't change what had already happened.

"It's done, it's over, so now it's a case of completely moving on.

"So it's really important to get help because it helps you move on, make sense of it.

"It's not important to lock yourself away and hide.

"There were a lot of factors and he was only one, really."

WHERE TO GET HELP:

If you are worried about your or someone else's mental health, the best place to get help is your GP or local mental health provider. However, if you or someone else is in danger or endangering others, call police immediately on 111.

OR IF YOU NEED TO TALK TO SOMEONE ELSE:

• 0800 543 354 (0800 LIFELINE) or free text 4357 (HELP) (available 24/7)
• YOUTHLINE: 0800 376 633
• NEED TO TALK? Free call or text 1737 (available 24/7)
• WHATSUP: 0800 942 8787 (1pm to 11pm)