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Tragedy at Pike River Mine
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On a sunny afternoon in November 2010, in the beautiful Paparoa Range of the South Island, a massive explosion rocked an underground coal mine. Later that day two ashen men stumbled from the entrance. Twenty-nine men remained unaccounted for. Initial probes revealed fatally high methane levels in the mine - conditions deemed unsurvivable for the trapped men. But it was only after a second blast five days later that all hope was extinguished. Tragedy at Pike River Mine is a dramatic, superbly researched and page-turning account of a disaster that should never have happened, of the dramatic political and legal fallout, and the effect on the small West Coast community. It reveals an appalling string of mistakes, from consent being given for the mine in the first place, to lack of proper monitoring equipment, pressure to ignore safety requirements, and effectively only a single exit. It puts a human face on the people who suffered, and provides penetrating insight on who's to blame. This is an essential read for everyone who cares about the future of New Zealand and our values as a nation. Rebecca Macfie's writing on Pike River has been hailed for its veracity, perspicacity and powerful human interest.
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About the Author

Rebecca Macfie is a senior writer with New Zealand Listener. She was previously a senior writer and deputy editor of The New Zealand Herald's Canvas magazine, editor and deputy editor of Unlimited magazine, and has written extensively for The Independent Business Weekly and National Business Review. She has 24 years' experience in journalism and has won many awards.

Reviews

Rebecca Macfie lays bare the pattern of promise and betrayal that doomed Pike River coal mine to disaster and 29 men to their deaths. Her spare, forceful narrative will leave readers far wiser and deeply outraged. . . . Investigative journalism at its very best. Rod Oram, columnist, "Sunday Star-Times"" Absorbing and heart-wrenching, this compelling book exposes corporate and regulatory failures of which all New Zealanders should be aware and ashamed. Fiona Rotherham, " Fairfax BusinessDay"" "Credit is due to Rebecca Macfie for her book, "Tragedy at Pike River Mine." The investigation makes compelling reading, and illustrates the power of journalism in book form." John Drinnan, "New Zealand Herald"" "This is the best sort of journalism methodical, well researched and dispassionate. But you can feel its cold anger." Nicholas Reid, "Reid's Reader"" "If you've already read accolades for this book, they're all deserved, and then some. Macfie digs through a mountain of information to deliver a compelling account of what went wrong at Pike River." --Jim Eagles and Mark Fryer, Weekend Herald "This is the best sort of journalism - methodical, well researched and dispassionate. But you can feel its cold anger." --Nicholas Reid, Reid's Reader "Credit is due to Rebecca Macfie for her book, Tragedy at Pike River Mine. The investigation makes compelling reading, and illustrates the power of journalism in book form." --John Drinnan, New Zealand Herald "Macfie . . . gets to the heart of a complex and detailed story without losing or confusing her audience . . . Lucid, exhaustive, enraging." --Guy Somerset, New Zealand Listener "Absorbing and heart-wrenching, this compelling book exposes corporate and regulatory failures of which all New Zealanders should be aware and ashamed." --Fiona Rotherham, Fairfax BusinessDay "Rebecca Macfie lays bare the pattern of promise and betrayal that doomed Pike River coal mine to disaster and 29 men to their deaths. Her spare, forceful narrative will leave readers far wiser and deeply outraged. . . . Investigative journalism at its very best." --Rod Oram, columnist, Sunday Star-Times

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