We’ve learned overnight that the Pike River mine main shaft was actually safe to enter in the immediate aftermath of the disaster. That’s exactly what mine experts said at the time, but the Government refused to listen. PM John Key repeatedly said that it was madness to re-enter the mine, but he either did not know, or, more likely, did not tell us that a re-entry had already been successfully executed.
My gut feeling is that Key, Whittal and, later, Solid Energy, knew that there was a reasonable chance that some miners had survived the initial blasts and were huddled around the rock fall blockage waiting for a rescue that never came.
Did John Key let the Pike River Mine survivors die to save his face?
The only way we will ever know the truth is to re-enter the mine.
We owe it to the dead men and their families.
We owe it to the living to know the truth about their deaths.