Bright and district crime stats flat: Inspector
By STRUAN JONES
THE Bright and District Chamber of Commerce convened their monthly meeting at the Alpine Events Centre at Pioneer Park on Tuesday evening, and welcomed guest speaker Victoria Police local area commander Wangaratta, Inspector Kerrie Hicks.
Inspector Hicks had been invited to participate in a discussion and to present on top- ics around crime in the Bright area, but as it turned out, had little to report.
Changes in crime statistics - if there were any at all over the past 12 months - were negligible, according to Inspector Hicks.
The Inspector spoke of how an increase in certain crime statistics can actually be a positive sign – representing an increase in reporting and therefore certain issues were getting the police attention they required.
Topics covered included what to do if holiday rentals were used as ‘party houses,’ a problem reportedly uncommon in Bright but not unheard of.
A comprehensive discussion was had on the recent Rod Run held over the Remembrance Day weekend, where the feeling was despite the enormous crowd it had drawn to the town, behaviour was to be commended with only a few minor cases requiring police attention.
It was recognised that after a busy snow season at Mount Buffalo, there is a need for a greater police presence on the mountain, if only to check visitors were carrying and fitting chains.
Other police-related subjects spoken about were road cyclists using the Mount Buffalo road, widely considered dangerous at best, yet more so when cyclists and cars don’t use lights.
Inspector Hicks stayed on through the rest of the Chamber’s meeting, which was concise and covered the recent Spartan Race, which by all reports was a raging success.
Participant numbers were up by more than 30 per cent on last year, to about 6000 adults and 1000 kids, cement- ing Bright’s version of the national event as the most popular in Australia.
Organisers of the race will soon enter talks with the Alpine Shire Council to discuss plans going forward after this initial three-year contract finished this year.
The main message from Inspector Hicks was simple: lock your car, lock your house, and if you need police assistant, call 000.