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Kaikoura Story

Boyd 1 tank

A Kliptank in the affected area stands strong

The largest horizontal movement was 12 metres on the Kekerengu Fault, while the largest vertical movement, or uplift recorded was 9m on the Papatea Fault.  Along 110km of coastline, vertical movement ranged from subsidence of 2.5m to uplift of 6.5m.

The Kaikoura earthquakes helped prove Kliptanks will stand what mother nature throws at them, with all five Kliptanks in the region surviving the quakes.  Designed by a structural engineer, Kliptank assembly is suggested by the name – the tank is ‘clipped’ together in sections.  It is a versatile above-ground modular plastic and aluminium storage facility designed and manufactured in New Zealand. 

Kliptank director Neil Peterken travelled down to Kaikoura just days after the quakes to check on his customers and their tanks.  “When I finally got through everybody was OK.  Their tanks, which were full, were still standing”.  Tank sizes in the area ranged from 900,000 litres to 1,400,000 litres and all five stood up to the quakes.

No testing could be done to see if a product could withstand an earthquake, so the Kaikoura quakes meant Kliptank’s Research and Development had continued and proved it could withstand a quake, Mr Peterken said.

Arriving in Canterbury days after the quake, he organised taking Kliptank’s customers for some R & R, after more than a week of dealing with quake repercussions.  He was thrilled with the feedback he received from all of the clients.  “I was amazed how our tanks had stood up”. 

In their first off-farm trip since the quake, the group shared stories of where they were at the time of the quake, but also how well the tanks stood up.  While there was evidence of spillage over the sides, there was no damage to the tanks, which had flexed and moved a fair bit, Mr Peterken said.  There was no moving on the ground.  “They’ve gone back and forward and nothing else”.

Major structures like cow sheds, troughs and even swimming pools had been severely damaged.  With tankers unable to reach cowsheds, some farmers had resorted to sending their milk into the effluent tanks.  We’re confident all the work and effort and engineering that has gone into the tanks and putting them on the ground was worth it.  They were all full at the time which is good.  I’m pretty pleased with all the effort of the team.  It’s a good proven product.

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