27 Oct 2012

Spring Creek miners look to Christchurch for work

8:44 am on 27 October 2012

More than 80 of the Spring Creek miners who were made redundant yesterday are already negotiating jobs as part of the Christchurch rebuild.

The West Coast coal mine is being mothballed because of poor international coal prices, meaning the jobsof 350 staff and contractors are being cut.

The Stronger Christchurch Infrastructure Rebuild Team met about 200 of the miners on the West Coast two weeks ago, and had expressions of interest from more than half.

Team general manager Duncan Gibb says the rebuild is gaining momentum and there should be steady work in construction for at least the next five years.

Mr Gibb says most mining skills are directly transferable and, of the the 80 who are negotiating with employers, 20 could start work straight away. The rest will only need a couple of weeks training.

Mr Gibb says those wanting to work in Christchurch but still live on the West Coast will be accommodated.