24 April 2008

40 years since the Wahine

New Zealand's biggest shipping disaster in recent history happened 40 years ago on 10 April. Patrick Dunford's blog reports on the details surrounding that tragedy. It was in the twilight years of the Wellington-Lyttelton ferry service on the long gone Union Steam Ship Company. I remember being taught vividly about this at school in Wellington, it left quite a mark on people in Wellington around at the time.
The Wahine, along with Tangiwai and Erebus, was one of the three major transport disasters since World War 2. They all seemed to show how small New Zealand's population was (and still is) in that so many knew someone or knew someone who knew someone who was part of it. Indeed, today you can't take a ferry from Wellington to Lyttelton, or an overnight train from Wellington to Auckland or take a sightseeing flight from Christchurch to Antarctica.

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