Christchurch, 10 Months After the Quake / by Zachary Krahmer

In November of 2010, Christchuch (Southern Island New Zealand) was struck by a magnitude 7.1 earthquake with no casualties. Before the city could repair itself, a 6.3 M aftershock hit on February 22 of 2011, shaking loose already weakened foundations and killing 181 and wounding between 500-1000. Despite the daily aftershocks (, progress is slowly taking form and the people of Christchurch at regaining a grasp on their lives. The city is healing. 

As the 10 month anniversary of this event passes tomorrow, one must think about another event that happened nearly 22 months previously in Haiti.. Where has the country progressed to since Jan 12 2010?  Why has one nation far surpassed the recovery of the other, and why have many citizens of the world turned their shoulder to both events? 

A side of a church with graffiti from the local community

Markings remain from rescue services. Signage remains from offices.

The majority of shops surrounding the CBD are sealed due to council orders that they remain unsafe to occupy. Insurance companies will not pay out for the contents of the stores owners are not allowed to enter, seemingly because their product is all there.

For those who are allowed to enter, selling their home is a possibility. For too many, there is no choice, only the option to continue waiting until the council allows them to enter their past homes.

2 vases, sealed in a home since the aftershock 10 months ago.

Banks have offered new home loan rates to help the city get back on its feet again.

"It’s been bad for me, my friends, business, just everyone. Healing is beginning, but it’s a slow process that will take time."

2 men walk around a site where an unsafe building was demolished.

Construction workers have affixed an angel to this crane.

The entrance to Christchurch’s central business district. “Road Closed”. Some peripheral businesses have managed to open since the February aftershock. 

All images taken December 12, 2011

© Zach Krahmer