Bassetlaw couple in New Zealand earthquake

Chris and Mahen Muthiah
Chris and Mahen Muthiah

A BASSETLAW doctor and his wife have spoken about the devastation caused by the earthquake which has struck New Zealand

Mahen and Chris Muthiah moved from Retford to Christchurch last year, where Mahen works as a doctor.

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key has declared a national state of emergency as the death toll from Tuesday’s earthquake rose to 75.

“It was 12.50pm on Tuesday 22nd of February when the earthquake struck totally unexpected,” said Chris.

“Mahen was to go to the city centre to the Hospital that morning although he had a clinic only in the afternoon.”

“He decided instead at the last moment to go just in time for the clinic which averted him being caught in the middle of the catastrophe.”

The couple managed to escape unscathed and no damage was caused to their house.

“The obvious devastation, human suffering and death toll is distressing,” the couple said.

“The leadership shown by the Mayor, Prime Minister and the heads of the emergency services is exemplary.”

“We are praying that those buried under the rubble would be rescued in time and those who had lost their loved ones would be comforted.”

“It feels like a war zone but every one is rallying round. The prospects for the community are daunting but their resilience is unshakeable and their resolve with God’s help will get them through this darkest hour.”

“It is early days yet but please remember in your prayers all those who are suffering due to loss of loved ones, injuries, and massive damage to their properties.”

Their daughter Dushka, who lives in Sheffield, said: “Initially hearing about another earthquake I was really worried and shocked, but luckily I managed to contact them.”

“My thoughts were that they’ve had a year’s adventure away and maybe it is time for them to come back.”