Christchurch Adventure Park loses appeal against a High Court decision

Chris Lynch
Chris Lynch
Mar 31, 2023 |

The Christchurch Adventure Park has lost its appeal against a High Court decision to hold it liable for damages caused by a fire that destroyed or damaged numerous properties in the Port Hills area of Christchurch in February 2017.

The owners of affected properties brought claims against Leisure Investments, the owner and operator of the nearby adventure park, alleging negligence, nuisance and liability under the Forest and Rural Fires Act 1977.

A High Court decision agreed and awarded damages against Leisure Investments.

Two fires broke out in the Port Hills, an hour and a half apart, and the chairlift operators’ priority was to keep the chairlift running.

The fires approached the chairlift line and eventually spread, causing significant damage.

Leisure Investments appealed against the High Court decision, but the Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal in a decision released today.

The Court found that Leisure Investments was aware of the fire risk and the potential for a major crowning forest fire in the chairlift corridor, but failed to take the necessary precautions.

The Court also found that Leisure Investments was liable under the Forest and Rural Fires Act 1977, and that it continued the nuisance by failing to take reasonable steps to remove or abate it.

The Court upheld the damages awarded by the High Court, including damages for alternative accommodation and stress, and the use of sustainable materials in rebuilding one of the claimants’ houses.

Chris Lynch
Chris Lynch

Chris Lynch is a journalist, videographer and content producer, broadcasting from his independent news and production company in Christchurch, New Zealand. If you have a news tip or are interested in video content, email [email protected]

Have you got a news tip? Get in touch here

got a news tip?