Posts Tagged ‘australia’

Ok  if earthquakes, floods and tsunamis in Australia and New Zealand weren’t enough. It has now caused a fissure in the bottom of a fresh water reservoir in the town of Huntsbury. The water of course has seeped through this large hole in the bottom of the ground and has been sucked into the natural water table and completely disappeared! Where has it gone? How will the rebuild the city’s water supply?

Where has all Huntsbury’s water gone?

By Rachel Tiffen

A reservoir the size of a football field has emptied in the days since the earthquake, leaving the few residents still in the area wondering what’s happened to the water.

The reservoir in the hillside suburb of Huntsbury suffered cracks and shifted with the force of the quake.

It used to hold 36 million litres of water, but during last month’s quake, the reservoir sprung a leak and started making noises.

Two weeks on, the reservoir’s empty and so is the neighbourhood – but the question remains, where has all that water gone?

Down at the bottom of Huntsbury Hill, Wolf Just has a theory. He says he’s no engineer, but when the clay’s clearly sodden two metres down, it’s not too hard to figure out.

“The dampness is really what worries you, so if it’s gone down to bedrock, and again I’m not an expert, but if it’s gone down to bedrock and then you’ve got the loose on top of it it’ll start sliding,” he says. “I don’t think I feel terribly safe there.”

Over the weekend heavy rainfall caused water to spout from Ramahana Rd. Houses have shifted and sunk, one on the corner’s been red-stickered and quake-formed gutters have emerged.

A consultant for Civil Defence told 3 News damage to the reservoir floor allowed all 36 million litres to seep out, and while most of it was soaked up in the ground underneath, some of it ran out into naturally formed tunnels and in theory, could still be sitting there

Down on Cashmere Rd, Ron Bruce reckons he’s copped a fair bit of it. He’s been pumping thousands of litres from his house since the September quake and says the last one just made it worse.

“We’re actually thinking of bottling it and selling it as spring water, or otherwise we could do a trench and turn it into a spa,” he says, which just doesn’t seem fair with so many in Christchurch still without water.


ATM glitch gives CBA customers ‘free’ cash

UPDATED Andrew Colley

A COMMONWEALTH Bank system outage today turned into a nightmare for the bank when its ATMs began dispensing large sums of cash to customers without funds.

Late this afternoon NSW Police reported that around 40 ATMs operated by a “major bank” were dispensing large amounts of excess cash.

A Commonwealth Bank spokesman late today confirmed that the rogue ATMs were operated by the bank and that the problems were linked to the system outage.

The bank spokesman said the affected ATMs were “not accidentally or randomly dispensing cash; our ATMs are currently operating and have been operating in standby mode.

“That means the ATM … can’t identify the customers’ account balance.

“Some have deliberately withdrawn more money than is in their account … and we will be recouping those funds.”

NSW Police state fraud chief Detective Superintendent Col Dyson today warned consumers who failed to return the money to the bank could face criminal charges.

“People should realise that even though an ATM has dispensed cash, they are not entitled to that money and are committing a criminal offence if they keep it,” Detective Superintendent Dyson said.

“They should also realise that ATM locations are covered extensively by surveillance”.

It’s understood that police have at least one ATM under police guard in Sydney’s west.

Earlier in the day the bank reported that the problem had left customers without access to its NetBank, Bpay and phone banking systems.

“The CBA is working to restore service as matter urgency. Full service is expected to resume this afternoon,” a bank spokeswoman said.

The bank said the problem was caused by a glitch during “routine database maintenance” overnight.

The bank was still trying to determine the extent of the customer impact, according to a CBA spokeswoman.

“We are working on it,” she said.

Australian consumers’ faith in electronic banking systems has recently been shaken by a series of high impact system outages.

Last year National Australia Bank had a catastrophic system outage which left thousands of customers without access to ATMs.

That outage was also caused by problems with overnight transaction processing. NAB’s transaction records were plunged into chaos by a corrupt file which was incorrectly loaded into NAB overnight processing systems.

IT departments at financial institutions such as CBA, Westpac, ANZ, HSBC, Citibank and Bank of Queensland went on high alert at the time when they did not receive daily records of NAB transactions.

The Commonwealth Bank today advised customers needing to conduct urgent fund transfers to visit their local branches.

The bank had not put on extra staff to manage increased loads at branches, the spokeswoman said.

“Customers can still access ATMs and Eftpos with branch staff available to handle any other requirements,” the spokeswoman said.

Police said that it was working with the CBA to determine the cause of the ATM malfunctions.

Earlier today the bank said it was hoping to restore all its services to normal by the end of the day.