On 22 February 2011 Christchurch was rocked by a magnitude 6.3 earthquake, an aftershock to a 7.1 quake the previous September. As many as 181 people were killed, and many buildings were severely damaged. Most of the fatalities occurred in two modern buildings that collapsed: the Canterbury Television building, and the Pyne Gould Corporation building (pictured). Soon after the quake, a royal commission of inquiry into building failure caused by the Canterbury earthquakes was announced. Among its aims was to establish why certain buildings failed and others did not, in order to inform decision-making on the rebuilding of Christchurch. The commission was to provide an interim report by 11 October 2011, and a final report by 11 April 2012.
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Photograph by David Wethey
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