Public Inquiry into the Earthquake Commission

Dame Silvia Cartwright

Message from the Inquiry Chair, Dame Silvia Cartwright: 

Welcome to the website for the Public Inquiry into the Earthquake Commission.

As the name suggests, the purpose of this Inquiry is to examine the role and work of the Earthquake Commission (EQC) in the aftermath of recent natural disasters, and to learn lessons that can be applied to improve how it operates in future events.

The Inquiry has a particular focus on the Canterbury earthquakes of 2010 and 2011, but will be addressing experiences right across New Zealand. That includes reviewing how EQC responded differently to other events such as the Kaikoura earthquake in 2016, and what we can learn from those comparisons.

The Inquiry may find fault, but is not designed to apportion blame, to assist with or revisit individual claims, or to revisit findings by the courts. Hence it will not operate in an adversarial way, as you might see in a courtroom.

While the Inquiry has been established by the Government, it is important to mention that it operates independently, and will report its findings to the Governor-General and Government later this year.

In order for the Inquiry to get the best picture of experiences with EQC, and to recommend any changes that might be needed, we need people to participate. If you have had an experience with EQC, such as a claim from one of the earthquakes, we want to hear about that experience and what change you think could make for better results in the future.

The period for formal written submissions to the Inquiry has now closed, and thank you to the hundreds who contributed. There is still time to attend a public forum, and you can find out more about these here.

The importance of this Inquiry for the people of Canterbury, and wider New Zealand, cannot be overstated. I am determined I will do my best to achieve the best result for people in accordance with the Inquiry’s Terms of Reference.

Thank you for your interest in this Inquiry. I look forward to your participation.

Dame Silvia Cartwright

Chair of the Public Inquiry into the Earthquake Commission 



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