The finding of the coroner in the Kopuawhara disaster, when 21 lives were lost by the flooding of one of the Public Works camps, that death was due to misadventure and that something very much out of the ordinary occurred in the district on the night of the tragedy, was borne out by the evidence at the inquest. According to one of the witnesses, an engineer of experience, the rain gauges above the scene of the disaster registered nearly 20 inches of rain in 10 hours, following upon eight inches the previous day. Such a downpour is without precedent in Xew Zealand, and without question the run-off, entering a comparatively narrow creek bed, would cause ;i sudden flood of a height and fury beyond all experience and beyond all the standards of precaution. Liferent ially the coroner found that those responsible for the [silting of the camp were not blameworthy, and | with that inference most of those who have read the evidence will agree. The coroner, after careful inquiry, was satisfied that the tipping of the spoil into the stream above the camp was not a factor in the disaster. He paid a warm tribute to the heroism of all concerned in the disaster, a tribute which will lie echoed throughout Xew Zealand.
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KOPUAWHARA DISASTER, Auckland Star, Volume LXIX, Issue 81, 6 April 1938
KOPUAWHARA DISASTER Auckland Star, Volume LXIX, Issue 81, 6 April 1938
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