Turnbull not guilty and and Batt the new MP
Wild weather and major trials marked the month of October
■ Bundaberg Police Sergeant Mick Ward was pleading for all drivers to be careful when using local roads after a double fatality on Rosedale Rd, about 20km north of Bundaberg. The tragedy marked the fourth and fifth fatality in the region during the September school holiday period. The crash, which happened just before noon, was between two motorbikes and occurred in the south-bound lane, blocking traffic for the rest of the afternoon. One man was pronounced dead at the scene while the other was taken to hospital and later died.
■ The drought-stricken Bundaberg region had not seen a drop of rain since July 14. Then the region copped a 300mm deluge with emergency service crews rushing about the region. There was a mini tornado, flights cancelled, power outages, roads blocked, schools closed and dams rising.
■ The suburb of Avenell Heights was meant to provide welcome relief for Gaylene and Terry Adams, who left North Bundaberg after they lost everything in 2013. They moved to their new home and began rebuilding their lives. But the wild weather followed them to their new home when a flying roof crashed in their backyard. One thing the couple didn’t lose was their sense of humour. Mr Adams simply uttered “bugger” when he realised the extent of the damage to his shed.
■ A Bundaberg mum who decided to give modelling one last go before her 30th birthday was named a finalist in the Miss Supercars competition. As a finalist, Jodie Poz- zan was through her paces in the judging circuit at the Gold Coast 600.
■ He might not be playing but former Turtle Tremaine Tairawhiti will be with the team every step of the way. The Turtles Brothers started their campaign for an eighthstraight Spring Cup against the Pythons in a grand final replay at The Waves Sports Ground. It was the first time the teams have played since Tairawhiti died just a day after the grand final. To commemorate his life, the teams would have a minute’s silence. Turtles Brothers would also honour Tairawhiti with their jersey this season.
■ Bundaberg Landcare’s Mike Johnson called on the community to take a stand to stop the State Development Area at Bundaberg Port from om going ahead. The state’s independent t Co-ordiinator- General released the Bundaberg Draft Development Scheme for the parcel rcel of land next ext to the port, seeking eeking comment on nn September 1818, 18, but Mr Johnson hnson claimed a 400400 year-old tree and turtles would be put at risk.
■ Bundaberg mayor Jack Dempsey welcomed the CMCA members and crew to the beautiful Bundaberg region as the location for their rally.
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■ The greatest animal anima love battle on the planet was wa photographed in waters near Lady Elliot Island. Up to 11 male humpback whales were seen duking it out in an epic fight known as a “heat run” to win the heart of a whale mother-of-one near the island.
■ Sobbing as she walked alone on a dark street after midnight, an upset teenager did not expect a stranger who walked over to ask how she was, would rape her on the bitumen road.
But a jury found Alfred “Alfie” Sitters guilty of raping the 18-year-old on Victoria St. Afterwards, she made her way to the East End Hotel where she got help. After hearing two days of evidence in the District Court trial in which Sitters, 33, denied raping and sexually assaulting the teen about 1am on November 8, 2015, it took the jury just over two hours to reach its guilty verdict on rape, and two counts of sexual assault. His sentencing was adjourned after Judge Everson started hearing sentencing submissions but stopped part-heard, because the defence did not
te have professional medical evidence on intellectual capacity to put before the court.
Gladstone Ports Corporation released its 2016-17 annual report, showing record throughput tonnages, strong revenue and solid profitability. GPC’s three ports, Bundaberg, Gladstone and Rockhampton, handled a record 121.2 million tonnes of cargo, 4.5 million tonnes more than the 2015-16 financial year for a combined revenue total of $470.9 million.
■ The most I know about Malcolm Turnbull is that he is our president ... I mean prime minster," one student said. Prior to the state election, the NewsMail sat down with a group of Bundy students to talk about how they viewed politics and, while some had an interest in the political system, they all said they knew more about what was happening in America than Australia – “because it’s boring”.
■ Fraud offences dramatically increased in the past 12
months, with police blaming advancements in technology. As part of Queensland Police Service’s Statistical Review it was revealed fraud in the Wide Bay Burnett region had risen by 88.4per cent.
■ While the threat of thunderstorms had passed, heavy rain and strong winds with the potential for minor flooding were still a possibility for region. The Bureau of Meteorology issued an Initial Flood Watch for coastal catchments from Gladstone to Caloundra as rain drenched the region.
■ Amid the torrential drenching which smashed the region, tragedy struck with authorities searching for six fishermen after their trawler capsized near Agnes Water. A police spokesman said one member of the trawler’s seven-man crew was found by a passing boat about 7am yesterday after nearly 12 hours in the water. The boat, Dianne, overturned near Middle Island, north of Seventeen Seventy about 7.30pm on Mon- day, and sank about midnight.
■ Nearly a dozen schools remained closed due to the weather, and homes in lowlying areas in Monto and Lowmead became surrounded by moats while others were evacuated.
■ The NewsMail was as a finalist in the 2017 News Corp Australia News Awards. The NewsMail was up against the Cairns Post and the Defying Debbie souvenir publication in the Achievements in Regional Journalism category. The Cairns Post came away victorious when the winner was announced the following week.
■ The sky opened up with a display like no other and Bundaberg had a front-row seat to an astronomical event with ties to Halley’s Comet. The meteor shower the Orionids was first recorded by the Chinese in 288AD and was visible from October 15-29.
■ Chocolate lovers cha chad down the CBD as locally loved Cha Cha Chocolate opened a storefront. Following the business’s sixth birthday, owner of the choc shop Melanice Jacobsen said she couldn’t wait to open her store on Targo St.
■ A Moore Park Beach couple was devastated after their four-wheel drive was swallowed by the ocean on Sunday night. It was one of two cars that became bogged, and multiple attempts to pull it out of the soft sand failed. The four-wheel drives spent the night with water lapping their roofs after the tide rose.
■ Our Bundaberg Rum Distillery, Hinkler Hall of Aviation and Kellys Beach Resort were all selected as Bundy entrants in the Queensland Tourism Awards, hosted by the Queensland Tourism In
■ A cruise ship whihc has passengers pay tens of thousands of dollars to sail the seas in opulent luxury will dock at the Port of Bundaberg in June. The Silversea line ship Silver Discoverer will make its way from Port Vila with a six-hour stop in Bundy en route to Cairns. Bundaberg North Burnett Tourism general manager Katherine Reid said BNBT had been working for 18 months on a touring program for passengers that would highlight the best of Bundaberg’s food and drinks.
■ The Federal Government will allocate $2m to fund a taskforce to investigate staffing in aged care. Earlier this year, the NewsMail reported on staff cuts in aged care homes and Bundaberg nurses took to the streets in protest. The announcement came as part of a raft of aged care reforms to target elderly abuse.
■ FINALLY a free man at 4.20pm on a Friday, Luke Turnbull walked from Bundaberg Police Station with his mum and dad. After nearly two years spent in limbo facing a murder charge over the stabbing death of Bundaberg boxer Landon Delinecort, the face of Mr Turnbull could not be seen when a Supreme Court jury pronounced his innocence.
■ The gloves came off as Leanne Donaldson, David Batt and Jane Truscott battled it out for the marginal seat of Bundaberg. After a long fight for the seat, LNP candidate David Batt was the new state representative for Bundaberg.
LOCALS were slapping themselves silly after recent rain brought in what seemed to be a plague of mosquitoes. Residents took to social media to vent, asking for remedies and ways to control them. The NewsMail revealed in July there had been 1830 mozzie-borne virus infections reported in the first seven months of the year, compared to 2462 for the whole of 2016 in Queensland.
OCTOBER: (Clockwise from top left) Luke Turnbull was found not guilty of murder, the port hit new highs, Hinkler Hall of Aviation was announced as one of the best tourism places, David Batt won the seat of Bundaberg, Cha Cha Chocolate expanded, Landcare said the SDA at teh port was not a good idea, cars sank at Moore Park Beach, storms ripped through Bundaberg and the CMCA rally was in town.