25 Oct 2011

Knowles named to lead Canterbury police

12:37 pm on 25 October 2011

The police officer who was in charge of the response to the Pike River mine explosions is to become the new Canterbury District Commander.

Superintendent Gary Knowles was the West Coast-Tasman District Commander when the explosions in the mine killed 29 men last November.

Mr Knowles has been provisionally appointed to the top role in the Canterbury district.

A police spokesperson says his position should be confirmed next week and he could start within six weeks.

He will replace Superintendent Dave Cliff, who led the city through the aftermath of the devastating February earthquake.

Mr Cliff has been appointed Assistant Commander for the South Island.