The Royal Commission on the Pike River Coal Mine Tragedy will resume hearings on Monday 14 November 2011 at the Greymouth District Court, Greymouth.

The hearings will examine matters relevant to Phase Three of the Commission’s List of Issues  entitled “What happened at Pike River?”. 

The hearings are scheduled as follows:

Monday 14 November  –   Friday 25 November 2011
Monday 5 December    –   Friday 16 December 2011
(19,20 and 21 December in reserve if needed)
Tuesday 7 February     –   Friday 17 February 2012

Media accreditation

Media who have not received media accreditation must apply by Monday 7 November 2011.

The media guidelines and application form to cover the hearings are available here or from the Commission’s Communications Advisor.

Once approval to cover the hearings has been granted all media representatives are required to:

• register their attendance by contacting Anna Hughes anna.hughes@royalcommission.govt.nz by 2pm Wednesday 9 November 2011.

• display their organisation’s photo identification while in the precincts of the hearing room. (If media staff are working on a roster or rotation basis then all potential attendees will be required to register).

• display a media identification sticker. These will be available from Anna Hughes at the hearing room from 14 November.

• switch off or silence mobile phones during the hearings. The phones cannot be used for capturing images or recording sound.

Media attendance and briefing

The Commission will hold a briefing before the start of the Phase Three hearings at 10.00am on Monday 14 November.

The hearing room and a media facility will be available for set-up from 9.00am on Monday 14 November.

The Commission may impose restrictions on coverage, but media will be advised of these at the start of the hearings.  Please be familiar with the standard conditions for media coverage in Court (included in the media guidelines referred to above). These conditions, notwithstanding that they apply to court coverage, will apply in addition to the arrangements outlined above.

Media facilities at the hearings

There is space for two cameras in the hearing room – one TV camera and one still camera.

There will be up to four seats available in the hearing room for journalists.

A media facility will be available in a room adjacent to the hearing room.  This facility will provide technical infrastructure for taking the pooled feed, a TV monitor to view live footage and access to other parts of the hearing facilities as required. Media are requested to provide their own internet connections.

Audio and visual coverage will be via a pooled feed. Media needing access to this feed must contact Anna Hughes by 2pm on Wednesday 9 November 2011 and will need to ensure they have the correct connectors.

Still photography will be via a pooled photographer.