Checkpoint. 2002-07-02

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Tono kōrero mai

Overseas - and scores of people have been killed after two airliners collided in the night skies over southern Germany. A Boeing 757 cargo jet and a Tupelov 154 passenger plane crashed into each other 11 thousand metres above Lake Constance near the Swiss border. The exact death toll is unclear - latest reports say at least 70 people have been killed. There were only two people on board the 757 but the Tupolev was carrying 12 crew and 57 passengers. Burning wreckage showered over a 30 kilometre area, setting fire to several buildings including a school. No one on the ground is reported to be hurt. Local resident Heiki Stark saw the crash. CUT
Helmut Bredigkeit (bread-i-kite) is the news editor for SWL radio in Baden Baden near the crash site - he told me that the wreckage is strewn across a huge area. PREREC
The road toll has hit a record low. Fewer people died on the roads in the first six months of this year than in any half-year since records began in 1965. The big drop in deaths is being attributed to drivers slowing down, staying sober and buckling up as Brad Markham reports. PKGE
Accident inspectors have been examining the scene of a double fatality today at a steel plant in South Auckland. One man died at the site and the second died later in hospital after a load of reinforcing steel dropped from a crane at Pacific Steel in Otahuhu this morning. A third person is also receiving treatment for injuries. Neither Pacific Steel nor the OSH inspectors were available to speak to Checkpoint this evening - joining us now is now is Mike Sweeny from the Auckland Engineers Union. LIVE
Air New Zealand pilots say they will go on strike for 48 hours, later this month. Their union, the Airline Pilots Association, says its 5-hundred members employed on Air New Zealand's domestic and international services, propose to [illegible] for two days from the 19th of July. I asked an advocate for the association Adam Nicholson why they're going on strike. PREREC
Meanwhile Air New Zealand has called on the union to call off the strike, which the company says is a self-defeating exercise. Air New Zealand spokesman David Beatson joins me now. LIVE
The United States military has launched an investigation into how its warplanes bombed a village in southern Afghanistan. Afghan officials say around thirty people were killed, although earlier reports put the figure much higher and the Pentagon is saying the number of casualties is unclear. Our Washington correspondent Vicky Ford reports. PKGE
The man charged with the abduction, sexual violation and murder of six year Napier schoolgirl Teresa Cormack 15 years ago has been commited for trial in the High Court. After the Crown completed presenting its evidence in the Napier District Court today, 43 year old Jules Mikus's (my kiss) lawyer conceded there was a prima facie case against his client. During the two day depositions hearing, the crown called nine witnesses, while written evidence from another 20 was handed to the judge. Heugh Chappell was at the hearing and joins me now. LIVE
National's Leader Bill English is turning up the heat on the Green Party, with a campaigning visit to the highly marginal Coromandel seat of Greens co-leader Jeanette Fitzsimons. Ms Fitzsimons has a majority of just 250 votes and National believes its candidate Sandra Goudie has a strong chance of regaining the seat, depriving the Greens of their one electorate. Mr English has spent the day around Thames and Paeroa, inspecting flood damage, meeting businesspeople and touring factories. He's also released National's environment policy. Our Parliamentary Chief Reporter Kathryn Street was with him and says Coromandel would be a prize trophy for National. PREREC
The Labour Party has unveiled its tertiary education policy, promising more university and polytech students will be entitled to a living allowance. Only about a third of students currently qualify for such allowances and to get one, their parents' joint income must be under 50-thousand dollars. Associate Education Minister Steve Maharey says the government wants to reduce the need for students to take out loans to cover their living expenses, and will do this by progressively raising the parental income threshold. But students are critical the policy doesn't spell out by how much it will be raised.
The co-president of the University Students Association, Andrew Campbell, says the policy lacks detail. CUT
Joining us now is Labour's tertiary education spokesperson - Steve Maharey. LIVE
To Arizona, where a part-time fire fighter has been charged with deliberately causing the largest bushfire in the state's history. The fire has swept through 180 thousand hectares, destroying hundreds of buildings and forcing thousands to flee their homes. The arrested man is Leonard Gregg, who belongs to the White Mountain Apache tribe. He's told investigators that he lit the fires so he'd have firefighting work through the summer. In the meantime fire fighters [illegible] they are now getting the upper hand, with the people of the town of Show Low allowed to return to their homes. Randy Tenney who runs a local motel was one of the few to remain throughout the crisis - he says it's a miracle the town survived. PREREC
The legal battle continues over whether a trophy sized snapper should have won a 20 thousand dollar fishing competition - or if the three anglers who caught it were guilty of fraud. Three men are charged with attempted false pretences by trying to win the competition with a 14 kilo fish alleged to have been caught before the competition. Gary Fisken, Shane O'Connell and Paul Jackison deny the charge. Our reporter Andrew McRae has been covering the case in the Hamilton District Court - he joins me now. LIVE

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Year 2002

Reference number 144156

Media type AUDIO

Collection Sound Collection

Credits RNZ Collection

Date 02 Jul 2002

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