December 2016

Merry Christmas to all

All P-Platers disconnected

By Melissa Blewitt
Currently, only drivers on their P1 licences or “Red Ps” are prohibited from using phones at all while driving, while those who have progressed to their P2 licences, or “Green Ps”, are able to use their phones for calls and audio only, providing it is securely mounted or a hands-free device is used.
But while TomToms and other navigation devices will be permitted, P-platers will be barred from using their mobile phones for the same purpose and under the same conditions – namely, that the device is securely mounted inside the vehicle – to access GPS directions.
Instead, they must pull over and park out of the line of traffic before they can use their phones.
The new laws have been introduced by the State Government in a bid to increase road safety and reduce fatalities among new drivers.
New road rules that come into effect on 1 December for learner and P-plate drivers are not only sensible for new drivers, but also provide a timely reminder to all drivers to keep their focus on the road, especially in the lead up to the busy holiday driving season, according to driving expert Joel Neilsen.
He is the head of Safe Drive Training Australia and has over 20 years’ experience as an advanced driver trainer working with police, security professional, car enthusiasts and novice drivers.
“I know young people today never seem to have their mobile phone out of their hands but it is not only critical they do not use their phone when driving from a safety point of view, but also from a legal one now,” Mr Nelisen explained.
“More seasoned drivers can be just as bad and I recommend that no one should use their phone when they are driving. I have taught thousands of drivers through the years, and in my training, I demonstrate what can happen even in a few seconds when you’ve taken your eyes off the road.
“I often advise drivers to use a GPS because good brands have features that can help them stay safer, especially when drivers’ concentration to the road can naturally drift off from time to time.
“I’ve found having a GPS also gives our younger drivers more confidence too because they are better guided on their journey and are prepared for what’s ahead.
So far this year in NSW, 21 young people have died in crashes involving P-plate drivers.
Between 2010 and 2014, drivers on their Green Ps, who comprise five per cent of all NSW drivers, accounted for about nine per cent of all mobile phone offences, according to the NSW Centre for Road Safety.
Joel Neilsen, who is the head of Safe Drive Training Australia and has over 20 years’ experience as an advanced driver trainer working with police, security professional, car enthusiasts and novice drivers, offers the following practical advice to young drivers while on the roads.
Keep your hands off your devices when driving.
Know what is around you at all time (this is called situational awareness).
When you turn the car on, put your mind into gear.
Your brain can’t process much complex, technical or emotional content at one time.
If you would not do your driving action with a parent or police officer present, don’t do it in their absence.

Celebrating wonderful volunteers

Condobolin High School volunteer Alynta Mckellar and CPS volunteer Rod Farrar cut the cake. MB

Condobolin Public School volunteers, who give their time and committment to the educational facility, were thanked with a morning tea recently. MB

by Melissa Blewitt

Condobolin Primary School held a morning tea to thank all of the wonderful volunteers that give their time and committment to the educational facility, in all manner of ways, throughout the year.
The morning tea was a small gesture to acknowledge the tireless efforts of the group of volunteers that have helped out during 2016.
“All schools need people from time to time to provide assistance, whether it is in the canteen, at swimming or athletic carnivals, Breakfast Club, in the classrooms, sports coaching, transportation to events, and everything else our fantastic volunteers help us with. I want to say a huge thank you to all of our fantastic volunteers, whom we would be lost without,” Principal Deborah Nay said.
Mums, Dads, guardians, grandparents, Condobolin High School students, and community members enjoyed a wonderful morning together, and then were able to sample a delicious array of treats.

Patrick, Libby and Nadia excell at Nationals

Patrick, Libby and Nadia excel at Nationals. MB


On Saturday and Sunday the 3rd and 4th of December, 2016, three members of the Condobolin RSL Freestyle Karate Club competed at the National Australian Martial Arts Championships (AMAC) at Homebush in Sydney.  

Nadia Hopkins (RIGHT) obtained a third in points sparring, Patrick Hourigan (LEFT) got a 5th in points sparring and Sensei Libby Roesner (CENTRE) achieved a 1st in freestyle (continuous) and a 2nd in Points sparring.

The Club is very proud of everyone’s efforts at the tournament, especially as Nadia was chosen to carry the NSW representative banner at the opening of the tournament.  Next week will be the end of Karate classes for this year and we will be having our end of year grading.   If anyone is interested in doing Karate we will take new students at the beginning of next year – there will be a registration day on Monday 6th February.  Osu!!  If you have any questions please contact Sensei Libby Roesner at

Contributed by Libby Roesner/Photo by MB

Yellow Mountain to get mobile boost

By Melissa Blewitt

Yellow Mountain, 80 kilometres North West of Condobolin, will finally get a new mobile base station, boosting services and internet access across the area.
Funding for the new tower was secured in Round Two of the Mobile Black Spots Program, and will be serviced by Vodafone.
It was selected as part of the additional $15 million contribution by the NSW Government in partnership with funding from the Commonwealth Government and mobile carriers.
“This is great news for our region and improved mobile coverage will ensure our community is safer, more accessible and better connected,” Member for Barwon Kevin Humphries said.
“The Yellow Mountain tower is one of 174 towers that will be delivered over four years and is one we’ve been trying to get through for some time.
“The tower, which will be serviced by Vodafone will give local businesses more freedom to operate and ensure local families can quickly access the services they need.”
It is expected the first Round Two Base Stations, including Yellow Mountain, will begin rolling out next year. Vodafone will release indicative rollout schedules on its website in due course.
Nation-wide 765 new or upgraded mobile base stations will address 4,400 mobile black spots ensuring 32,000 homes and businesses, spanning some 86,000 square kilometres, will have access to coverage. There will be 202,300 square kilometres of new external antenna coverage and over 7,600 kilometres of new coverage to major transport routes.
On making the announcement, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said in Canberra last Thursday: “Our first round saw 499 new base stations committed around Australia. Our second round $60 million – that will total $220 million of government money committed to the Mobile Black Spots Program – will see 1400 black spots around Australia addressed with 266 new base stations.”
“Our $60 million of government money is leveraging $213 million in total from the telecommunication companies. So this is a great win for regional and rural Australia and it is ensuring that all Australians have access to good mobile reception.”
Minister for Regional Communications, Fiona Nash, added: “The Coalition wants to help build strong and sustainable rural and regional communities so that our children and our grandchildren either want to stay in those communities or come back to those communities. When we invest in regional communities, it gives them confidence and it’s that confidence that allows them to be strong into the future.
“I am so proud to be part of a Coalition that is delivering this greater mobile phone coverage. $60 million under round two. We are seeing 266 new base stations, we are seeing new and improved mobile phone coverage for 6,300 homes and businesses and across 17,700 square kilometres of regional Australia. We are seeing mobile phone coverage for 1900 kilometres of the major road routes and we are delivering 1400 black spots fixed under this Coalition Government. Under Labor they fixed none.”
Round Two will see a total of $213 million (GST incl.) being invested in new mobile base station infrastructure. The Australian Government funding for Round Two has been supplemented by Telstra ($63.7 million) Optus ($36.4 million) and Vodafone ($1.6 million).
In addition, six state governments have co-contributed towards round 2: New South Wales ($8.3 million), Queensland ($13.7 million), South Australia ($1.5 million), Tasmania ($0.35 million), Victoria ($7.9 million) and Western Australia ($21.8 million). An additional $475,000 has been provided by local governments, businesses and community organisations.

Great Fun at Condobolin Fiesta

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