Quake - Emergency Billets in Wellington Area - Offers Accepted

23 February 2011

A temporary phone line and email address have been set up today to deal with inquiries from Wellingtonians who want to offer free accommodation to hundreds of people expected to arrive in the Capital from Christchurch.

Up to 1,000 people - mainly foreign tourists - are likely to be flown into Wellington by the RNZAF following yesterday's devastating quake.

Many of the people have left Christchurch without passports and other personal possessions.

The Wellington Region Civil Defence Emergency Management Group is helping the people as they arrive at Wellington Airport during the day.

If people in the Wellington area are interested in providing a temporary roof over the heads of these people then please ring (04) 801 4205 or email CD.Welfare@wcc.govt.nz with details.

Group welfare staff are working with local hotels and marae and other organisations able to provide accommodation.

Group spokesman Mike Mendonca says at the moment it appears all of the people from Christchurch should be able to be housed in the likes of hotels. "But we know there's great interest from generous Wellingtonians who want to help - so if locals have space to billet a few people then we'd like to hear from them in case we start to have trouble finding accommodation."