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Today’s announcement that the High Court found Engineering New Zealand made an error of law when it dismissed disciplinary proceedings against Alan Reay, whose firm designed the CTV building in Christchurch, is welcomed, National’s Building and Construction spokesperson Andrew Bayly says.

“Those who do substandard work should be held liable. The CTV building in Christchurch has been rated as one of New Zealand’s worst engineering failures and those in the building and construction sector will welcome a process that will hold people accountable for their work.

“This is a good outcome for the families of the CTV victims but it is also important for improving the standard of professional engineering. An issue that must be clarified through this process is ensuring responsibilities are clear between a supervising engineer and a more junior colleague as it is unacceptable to have neither accepting accountability for a design.

“I commend former Building Minister and engineer Dr Nick Smith for pursuing this matter through the courts by lodging this successful judicial review in March 2015. Dr Smith was frustrated that the Institute of Professional Engineers dropped its investigation after Dr Alan Reay resigned and pushed for this legal action to have this decision overturned.

“115 people lost their lives in the collapse of the CTV building. We owe it to them to hold those responsible to account for the building’s flawed design. We need to ensure every possible lesson is learnt by the engineering profession in order to minimise any future risk.”

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