5 Aug 2011

Timing of Pike River inquiry third phase announced

11:45 am on 5 August 2011

Royal Commission investigating the Pike River mine tragedy has announced dates for the final phase of its inquiry.

Twenty-nine men died in explosions in the West Coast coal mine in November last year.

The third and final phase of the commission will look at what happened at the mine to cause the deaths and will start on 14 November. It will run for two weeks, and there will be hearings again in early December and February.

The first phase of the inquiry, which considered the mines rules and regulations and the design of the mine, ended late July after 47 hours of evidence from 12 witnesses, including the mine's general manager.

The second part, which looks at the search and rescue operation, begins in Greymouth on 5 September.