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SHIFT MINER The Queensland mining community’s best source of local news

Monday 31st January 104th Edition 2011

M A G A Z I N E

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FULL UP Flooded mines on high safety alert THE safety of miners across central Queensland is at risk if inundated Bowen Basin coal mines are unable to pump water out of flooded pits. At the time of print, ex-tropical cyclone Anthony was hovering off the central Queensland coast - a reminder to the industry that the wet season is far from over. Any further rain could force the closure of mines across the region. Twenty-three coal mines have been granted temporary permits known as TEPS from the Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) which allows them to pump water back into river systems at monitored levels. DERM is currently considering another 16 applications. One of those is Xstrata’s Newlands mine, where authorities are on the cusp of closing the mine down. In a situation that highlights the problem that many underground mines currently face, the amount of water sitting on the surface of the mine is close to forcing the underground pit to be closed to workers. The mine is still operating, but has not yet been granted permission to start pumping out water. Union and the Mines Inspectorate are

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News First floods now snakes at Hastings Âť page 5 News Queensland mines rescue crews could re-enter Pike River Âť page 8 News Dawson miners big hand in helping Theodore Âť page 9 News Why steel is cheap and available Âť page 12 Around Town Coalfields kids back at school Âť page 15

How Australia Day was celebrated in your town    Page 14

Âť continued page 8

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CONTENTS 104th EDITION. 2011

20

21 WHAT THE? CHICKEN TONIGHT

BIG ADVENTURE MINER’S TRADER

16

23

FROM THE EDITOR

THE floods have swept a layer of filth across most of Queensland. The stinking water has swamped people’s homes for days before receding with its telltale brown stain. It has ruined vital infrastructure like roads and rail that will take months and cost billions to repair. It has devastated businesses from Emerald to Brisbane to Condamine to Dalby. It has turned mine pits into reservoirs, and sent every dam in Queensland into overflow. Worst of all, it has claimed the lives of 35 people. You cannot start a conversation in Queensland at the moment before checking the person you are talking to has not been affected. Most often they have been - either directly or indirectly - and if not, they know someone who has. All are quick to reference someone else they know who is worse off than them. It has been a time of great sadness, but

also one where communities turn to each other for help. If you want an inspirational read, turn to page nine and find out how Dawson miners and the Moura community helped Theodore in its hour of need. Mining companies have donated $25 million so far to the flood appeal, not to mention in-kind help with machinery and the like. And the sector quite frankly has its own problems - with 85 per cent of Queensland’s coal mines affected. Pits are inundated, haul roads wiped out, rail tracks mangled, and the industry is bleeding $100 million a day. What the industry needs more than anything right now is for the state government to urgently address how it deals with requests to pump out water in flooded pits. The current system was not designed for a disaster of this magnitude, and mines could be in a very sticky situation if the sky re-opens. We’re only in January after all - the wet season is far from over.

Alex Graham

Numbers You REGULARS Numbers Numbers CountYou On** You 4 BackCan online 16 * STUFF TO THE EDITOR

NEWS

Can Count OnCount On Can CQ’s crippled supply chain

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Combine soy sauce, honey, lemon juice and garlic in a bowl guests or simple having a family and mix well. Place the chicken pour the marinade barbeque. Throw these tasty treats in a dish and www.shiftminer.com M A G A Z I N E over top. Cover and marinade on the barbeque toGAbe in M AE G A www.shiftminer.com Z I N Ethewww.shiftminer.com M AM AG Zready I N www.shiftminer.com A Z I N E minutes. You can also use this for 2 hours or overnight for the with different meats such flavour to go through the chicken. The Bowen Basin’s recipe premier magazine Phone: (07) 4921 4333 Fax: (07) 4922 6908 angus.peacocke@shiftminer.com Proudly Audited by Proudly Audited by as pork or beef. Serve with boiled Editor: Alex Graham Advertising: Angus Peacocke 0428 154 653 Proudly Proudly Audited white or brown riceAudited for by theby perfect Preheat the barbeque on high Published fortnightly by Fitzroy Publishing Pty Ltd heat. strips of chicken on visit Thread www.auditbureau.org.au meal. M A G A Z I NForEmore information A.B.N 72122739879 PO Box 1440, Rockhampton Q 4700 For more information visit www.auditbureau.org.au skewers leaving 2cms at each end. Grill the chicken skewers on the INGREDIENTS: For more information visit www.auditbureau.org.au For more information visit www.auditbureau.org.au barbeque, turning them 3 or 4 times until the chicken is cooked through. 1/2 cup light soy sauce 1/3 cup honey Place rice into a saucepan, add 1 lemon, juiced water. Bring the rice to the 1 garlic clove, crushed boil, reduce heat and cook for 500g chicken breast fillets, cut 5 minutes, or until most of the into 2cm wide strips water has been absorbed. Turn Skewer sticks off heat and cover for 10 minutes. 1 Cup of rice s7ORK#OVERCLAIMS Serve chicken skewers with rice 2 Cups of water T s7ORKRELATEDINJURIES and sprinkle with sesame seeds. CONTACT

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Miners’ $25M for flood victims

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110 Campbell Street, Rockhampton. Page 3 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


News

104th EDITION. 2011

Blackwater back on track - for now CENTRAL Queensland’s coal supply chain is coming back online, but mining companies aren’t getting too comfortable just yet. One ports chief has warned it would only take another bout of bad weather to bring the system to a halt once again.

By the end of this week, the Gladstone port expects its stockpile will be over the million tonne mark, compared to the record low of below 400,000 tonnes earlier in the month. The Blackwater rail line was out of action for almost a month, but last week 140

trains arrived at port and 500,000 tonnes of coal was loaded. “That averages out to 18 trains a day, and our normal daily average is 25 trains per day we hope to be fully operational sooner than expected.�

“With the increase in coal trains arriving at the port we are confident of rebuilding our stockpiles quickly,� said Gladstone Ports Corporation chief executive Leo Zussino. Last week, 11 vessels were anchored off Gladstone and another seven were scheduled to arrive this week. Meanwhile the Bundaberg port remains closed to commercial shipping due to the flooded Burnett River. “The port remains closed due to flood material in the berth pocket, channel and swing basin,� said Mr Zussino. Port Alma will also remain closed to commercial shipping until flood damage can be assessed. Mr Zussino has warned that while things have improved dramatically, it would only take a little wet weather to break the chain. “If we get rain over that period we will have to re-assess the situation.� “It would be surprising if it [the wet season] just decided to stop in the middle of January and that’s the issue we are all really concerned about because you would anticipate there will be further rain.� Mines that will are now able to access the Blackwater line are Curragh, Yarribee, Jellinbah, Lake Vermont and Blackwater. It’s still not known when Rolleston and Minerva mines will be re-connected.

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News

104th EDITION. 2011

FAST NEWS THE FACTS ABOUT THE FLOODS • 85 per cent of Qld’s 50 coal mines affected* • Cost to date to mines estimated at $2.3 billion • March quarter production expected to fall by 25 per cent and up to 50 per cent under a high impact scenario* • Loss of state government royalties will be between $1.6 and $2.9 million a day for the rest of the financial year* • Coking coal price expected to surge past $400/tonne

Snakes alive as CAT opens doors HASTINGS Deering in Rockhampton has reopened its doors for business after it was inundated with floodwaters... and snakes. The heavy machinery business had 150 millimetres of water through its Port Curtis depot, but perhaps even more terrifying, more than 120 snakes have also been caught on the site since waters receded. Hastings area manager Darren Wilson said the clean up process had been dangerous - but it was not unexpected. “In the 1991 floods we actually had Ste-

SNAKES ALIVE: There were 120 more of snakes like these caught at the Rockhampton depot

ve Irwin in to catch all the snakes that came up during that flood,” he said. “He got about 60 then, so we knew that this time we would have the same problem.” “We actually decided to get our snake handlers up from Melbourne, because the local snake handlers have been very busy and were already occupied.” All types of snakes have been caught including browns, keel backs, carpentarias and red belly blacks. The reptiles have been relocated in bushland away from the site, and it’s thought most of them will have been captured and removed by the end of the week. The business has been shut for more than a month while the clean up took place, but now all 650 employees are back at work. Despite the floods, Mr Wilson is optimistic about 2011 and anticipates a very strong first half of the year. “Mining companies are going through a clean-up period now with repairs to pits and the Blackwater railway line, but that should all be back to normal in a couple of months,” he said. “We service Rolleston, so that’s going

• Some of the companies that declared force majeure at some point: BMA, Rio Tinto, Xstrata, Peabody Coal, Aquila, Wesfarmers, Macarthur Coal, Anglo American and Cockatoo Coal. • Blackwater rail line out of action for almost a month • Gladstone port stockpiles lowest on record until Blackwater line reconnected last week • Gladstone port now processing 18 trains a day (usually 25) • Some stretches of western rail line might not be fixed for seven months • Port Curtis still closed • Bundaberg port still closed • Baralaba mine not expected to come on line until next month • Diesel shortages meant some mines could not start to de-water

to be a bit longer, but as those companies come back on line, with the strong coal prices we are certainly expecting to see things really busy.” The company’s latest intake of 21 apprentices have also started work this week, bringing the total number of apprentices to 95. Text us your thoughts on 0428 154 653

Sit back & relax

• Mines accommodation used as emergency evacuation centres in Moura and Emerald • De-watering laws mean some mines are on the verge of being closed because the water is creating safety issues but they have not been granted permission to pump out (*from the QRC’s latest state of the sector report)

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Page 5 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


News

104th EDITION. 2011

Coal prices surges past $US400/tonne THE latest flooding in central Queensland is likely to push the spot prices for coal past the record $US400 a tonne level it hit after the 2008 floods. Severe flooding has significantly affected 50 of the state’s coal mines, meaning the damage this time is more widespread than two years ago. Senior resources analyst with Mine Life Gavin Wendt said he expected prices to exceed the 2008 levels, where the contract price for coal tripled to $US300 a tonne and the spot price peak was $US400 a tonne. “I’m very bullish on coal prices - I was bullish on them before this tragic flooding event - simply from a demand and supply point of view,” Mr Wendt said. “At the end of the day the spot price for coal is going to be determined by the level of desperation of buyers and I would expect the prices to reach those at 2008

and I think they can even get higher.” He said even before the floods there had been a strong increase in demand for coking and thermal coal, which had been reflected in the steady rise in coal prices generally. However this rise has become more acute since supply from the Bowen Basin coalfields was hindered because of wet weather. “The floods focus the vulnerability of the market on the supply side and that has built a large premium into the price,” he said. “There is always a tone to the market that at any time one of the world’s biggest suppliers [Queensland] of quality coal could be interrupted and that’s put pressure on prices.” Mr Wendt said the industry will struggle to play catch up with infrastructure already struggling to cope with increased demand

“I’m very bullish on coal prices - I was bullish on them before this tragic flooding event - simply from a demand and supply point of view.”

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in perfect conditions - let alone when the supply chain is interrupted. “You have to think getting production back online for the coal companies is going to be slower and delayed as a result of the

shortage and the demand for people.” “This isn’t going to be a clean up overnight, the rebuilding is going to be important and it’s going to be something that is going to be around for years to come.”

Record coal prices slippery slope at coal face THE mining union is warning coal companies not to jeopardise the safety of workers to cash in on record high coal prices. “We are already starting to get reports about problems with guys operating trucks on wet haul roads,” said CFMEU safety representative Tim Whyte. “We’ve heard about trucks sliding 180 degrees, 360 degrees and near misses with light vehicles.” “Workers need to question their bosses, if you are unhappy about something that you think is unsafe say so - and if nothing gets done go and sit in the crib room.” Mines Health and Safety Commissioner Stewart Bell has confirmed the Inspectorate has received similar reports of incidents on haul roads. “Our big concern is movement of heavy vehicles on wet roads.” “Those vehicles need to be properly

maintained and caution must be taken in the current conditions.” “We’ve had no major incidents so far but it is something we are very conscious about and our inspectors are out there making sure things are being carried out as they should.” Commissioner Bell said while coal prices are high, to his knowledge mining companies are not pushing workers to take risks. “To the contrary, mining companies have been doing the right thing over the past few months both in terms of their own workforce and helping local communities.” There has also been two cases of spider and snake bite on central Queensland mines recently. “It’s worth remembering these animals could be on your site just trying to find a dry area so be on the look out,” he said.


News

104th EDITION. 2011

CQ fuel supplies almost replenished

CENTRAL Queensland’s fuel supplies are almost back to normal, according to one local supplier. Central State Fuels based in Gladstone, has major depots in Rockhampton, Emerald and Longreach and wholesale and retail sites in Biloela, Moura, Yeppoon and Isisford. “The difficult part is the catch up, every-

body wants their fuel but trying to get it to everybody all at once that is hard,� said general manager David Thomas. “You just do piecemeal stuff to begin with, so everybody has something, and then you go back when you can.� “But for some of our big industrial customers like QMAG we just have to keep the sup-

ply up to them, we just can’t run them out.� Mr Thomas said the floods had caused logistical headaches for his business with some drivers caught on the wrong side of rivers, and a whole fleet in Rockhampton out of action. Once roads started to reopen, the normal routes were abandoned with supplies being brought in from wherever possible. Panic buying also caused problems. “In Gladstone, where we were relatively free of major flooding, people here still panicked - I don’t know what started the balls rolling but it went berserk and we sold a lot of fuel.� “That can shorten up supplies and you get put on rations from larger companies and that did happen, but it wasn’t huge and it didn’t effect us for long.� Shift Miner understands that some mines could not begin the recovery and de-watering process for some time because they did not have the diesel on site to power the process. But Mr Thomas said, considering the extent of the flooding and damage to roads, the situation has returned to normal very quickly.

“I think that once the water went down all the councils and all the appropriate people did a really good job getting the ball rolling.� He said this flood has taught him some lessons he won’t forget next time round. “I think now I wouldn’t leave as many of my trucks in Rocky I would take my major fleet back to Gladstone,� he said. “But all you can do when you know it is starting to happen is just ramp up supplies so you have your stock full while it is happening and afterwards.� “We actually did do that this time round.� Mr Thomas said supply to the Gladstone port had been good, and another ship was currently in dock. However, like many others in the industry, he is warning the situation could change quickly if the weather turns. “The next six weeks are going to be extremely interesting, it is wet underfoot and it wouldn’t take much to get back to minor or major flooding again.� Text us your thoughts on 0428 154 653

“The difficult part is the catch up, everybody wants their fuel but trying to get it to everybody all at once that is hard.�

Grasstree miners escape wall of water THREE underground miners have good luck and quick thinking to thank for an escape from a metre-high wall of water that surged towards them at Anglo American’s Grasstree mine last week. The group had been fixing a continuous miner at the face when they heard the warning sound. “Talking to the lads they said it was like a freight train coming, they could hear it before they were warned to get out,� said CFMEU safety representative Tim Whyte. “When they saw it, it was a metre-high wall of water.�

“Thanks to good luck they were working on the high side of the machine and managed to scramble up to the top of it, and that saved their lives.� According to the union, the mine had been storing water in an underground reservoir but had been using the wrong type of seals. “The 20 PSI stoppings they had in place are not rated for a body of water and it leaked through and eventually the walls gave way,� said Mr Whyte. “The greatly disappointing part of this was there was absolutely no monitoring in place - they knew that water was there

and they were not monitoring it.� “We don’t believe the flooding in the area was the main cause of this, we believe it was the failure to install bulk heads and failure to monitor the situation.� The water being stored at the mine site was not as a result of the floods, but some overflow from a neighbouring Xstrata open cut pit during the recent deluge could have

added to the build up of pressure. Last week the mine was re-opened to workers after a risk assessment found the water inflow had been secured. In a statement, Anglo American said it expected recovery activities to take a number of days before operations could safely resume. The union has organised counselling for the three miners involved.

“Talking to the lads they said it was like a freight train coming, they could hear it before they were warned to get out.�

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Page 7 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


News

104th EDITION. 2011

not done - miners Flooded mines Job not forgotten pose safety risk Queenslanders still at front line of pike river recovery

FROM PAGE 1

constantly monitoring the on-site water levels, with even a moderate rainfall able to change the situation. Mines Safety and Health Commissioner Stewart Bell said the situation was dangerous for underground mines. “With any mine if it going to impact on the safety of workers we won’t let that happen the water will be pumped,” he said. “Where the problems arise is when large amounts of water go into coal mines and if seals are broken it could allow gas into the mine.” “People would have to be evacuated and to recover the operations would be extremely difficult.” “To go back into the mine the gas would have to be ventilated and it would be quite a difficult process and not without risk.” But Mr Bell said he believed DERM understood the balance between on-site safety and looking after the environment with controlled releases of water. The Queensland Resources Council

(QRC) remains unconvinced the right balance has been struck. QRC chief executive Michael Roche has called for a relaxation of the rules so mines can pump out pits while local rivers are still flowing fast. “The state government must seriously consider using its emergency powers to authorise the speedy release of excess water from mines,” he said. “Miners are fearful that they are also vulnerable to uncontrolled water releases in the event of more heavy wet season rain, which forecasters say is on the cards.” “The coal industry is not seeking a leave pass to discharge “toxins” or “contaminated floodwater” but regulatory recognition that these are not normal times and that the biggest reconstruction in Queensland’s peacetime history demands all hands on deck.” So far, DERM has refused to allow blanket approval for all mines and is continuing to process applications on a case-by-case basis.

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CONTRARY to some media reports, the Pike River mine recovery effort is far from over. For more than 50 days, a rotating team of 30 Queensland Mines and Rescue Service (QMRS) workers have been manning an extraordinarily difficult attempt to stabilise the mine. According to QMRS state manager Wayne Hartley, they are close to declaring the mine safe and stable. “We are now at the position where it has been safe and stable for more than seven days and some time in the near future the experts should declare it as such,” he said. That’s no mean feat. The jet engine that has been running the specialist GAG unit that has been used to stabilise the mine has given up the ghost after 1200 hours of work. A new military jet engine from the US is on its way over to replace it. The next step in the process will be to send personnel down into the mine for a reconnaissance mission to see if it is possible to bring out the bodies of the 29 miners who died in the explosions back in November. If that does happen, chances are it will be Queenslanders going down the mine. “Every step of this process is like Hillary climbing Mt Everest,” said Mr Hartley. “Every step is going to be difficult and every step is going to be fraught with its own risk and we have to carefully examine whether rescue crews can enter the mine.” Mr Hartley said even if the bodies are never recovered, getting the mine stable and being able to access it is an enormously important milestone. “For the families it is so important for them to know that everyone has done everything in their power to at least try.” “Being able to get inside and find out the lay of the land will be vital because not knowing what caused the incident will leave everyone with various speculative statements.” Mr Hartley said inaccurate reporting that the mine would be sealed with the bodies inside had caused anguish for both the families and rescue crews.

He said the reporting had stemmed from misunderstanding that rescue crews needed to seal the mine so they could keep pumping it full of inert gas to stabilise it. “The mine had to be sealed to stop the leaking through the vent shaft, a natural fault line, and the portal entry.” “But it was such a challenging environment in the mountains and so vulnerable to severe weather - that played havoc with us from day one.” “The storms would roll in of an afternoon and we couldn’t fly the helicopters into the mountain to get to the sampling points.” “The natural fault line is in awkward and difficult terrain.” “To try and seal those cracks was near impossible on a vertical mountain rising 80 degrees several hundred metres into the air.” The bill for the entire operation will be handed to the New Zealand police - and it is running into the high hundreds of thousands of dollars. Mr Hartley said his crews are emotionally and physically exhausted by the job. “I am just so proud of them, they didn’t waver at any stage not on Christmas Day, not on Boxing Day.” “They should have been with their families but they were their holding that mine from continuing to explode and burn out of control it was so critical to hold it in that state.” The job is far from over, with the next stage of the reconnaissance mission expected to be just as painstaking as every other part of the recovery effort to date. Text us your thoughts on 0428 154 653

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Page 8 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011

QMRS crews have been working around the clock since November to man the recovery effort


News

104th EDITION. 2011

Mateship on the a tale of Dawson two towns FROM first light on the 28th of January the evacuation began. At the peak of the operation eight choppers were flying people in four at time, and landing five abreast. They were leaving their homes in Theodore, and flying 20 minutes in torrential rain to take refuge in Moura. No-one knew how long they would need to stay, or when the flood waters would start to recede. It sounds like the sort of operation best handled by the army. But the town of Moura didn’t need that sort of help. Within the tight-knit mining and agricultural community there was enough expertise to run their own rescue operation, and do it in a style that could only be regarded as first class. The production superintendent at Anglo American’s Dawson mine at Moura is Tony O’Dell.

Tony says the mine first became aware there could be a real problem just before Christmas, when a few workers that hail from Theodore raised the alarm. At that point, management at the mine started making arangements to help house and feed people if it came to that. “We knew we had the beds here and we knew we had a month’s worth of food supply at our camp,” said Tony. What they didn’t know then, was that days later nearly the entire town of Theodore would be sleeping and eating in Moura. “We booked out every room they had at the Moura Hotel and the Coal and Cattle Hotel for the next week - all on Anglo Amreican’s bill and we prepared our own quarters,” he said. “Then we went across to the IGA and stocked up on things like toothbrushes.” But when the first group of evacuees arrived, it became clear that a toothbrush was not going to be enough. “One thing that caught us by surprise

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was we thought they’d come with at least a bag, but a lot came with absolutely nothing.” Literally two hours after the first chopper landed, word had spread around Moura that their neighbours were in need of some help. The Kianga Hall became the place people brought anything and everything from clothing to bedding to books. “It was fully stocked, it looked like a shop to be honest,” said Tony. “The generosity from the town was overwhelming.” Nearly 300 of the 350 residents of Theodore were evacuated to Moura, and many stayed almost a month. Food supplies at the Dawson mine camp did get stretched at one point - which isn’t surprising given hungry evacuees ate one week’s supply in the first two days. But Tony says they were proud to be able to provide people with first-rate accommodation, food and facilities - to try and make the ordeal less of a hardship for those who had lost so much. “We didn’t want Hurricane Katrina style help in our backyard we had the resources here to accommodate people like we would normally,” he said. “We called it Camp Moura, people here had proper rooms and families were

together and they had some privacy.” Tony says more than 50 Dawson mine workers were actively involved during the evacuation and aftermath. “We had so many people here with such a breadth of experience that naturally just lend themselves to this sort of ability with good logistics and people skills.” But he said the operation was a success because it was able to harness the skills of both the rural and mining sector. In particular, he says Moura Aerial Agriculture was crucial because they provided 30,000 litres of jet fuel. “Without that we couldn’t have landed the choppers, they did all the refuelling they just turned up and supplied every litre they had.” “There’s good people in mining and there’s good people in agriculture and here in Moura we are lucky to have a good mix of both.” But above all, Tony says it community spirit that made it possible. “People from both the Moura and Theodore township worked well together and remained so positive, if they didn’t come with that sort of attitude after four weeks of heavy rain then it wouldn’t have worked.” Text us your thoughts on 0428 154 653

Page 9 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


News

104th EDITION. 2011

500 jobs in $1billion Gladstone LNG plans Burton expansion slowed - but on track PEABODY Energy’s decision to develop the deepest open cut coal mine in central Queensland will save the jobs of 500 miners. Last week Thiess contractors were awarded a six-year $1.3 billion contract to continue operations at Peabody’s Burton mine near Glenden, which until recently had been destined for closure. Thiess has operated Burton mine for the past 14 years and the new contract will see the mine operating until 2016. Since mining began at Burton in 1996, more than 50 million tonnes of thermal and coking coal has been mined. Thiess chief executive Bruce Munro said, under the new contract, the mine

will produce about 2.5 million tonnes of coal each year. “This contract will see operations return to the original mining area started in 1996,” he said. “The high quality coal will be mined to a depth of up to 240 metres, making this operation the deepest open cut operation in the Bowen Basin.” “The Burton coal mine extension will employ more than 500 people and will see us mobilise an additional Liebherr R9800 one of the world’s largest mining backhoe excavators.” The mine is back to operating as per usual after the recent rain, and Thiess is on track to meet production targets.

“The high quality coal will be mined to a depth of up to 240 metres, making this operation the deepest open cut operation in the Bowen Basin.”

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ARTIST’S IMPRESSION: Santos has given the go-ahead for the GLNG project

WIDESPREAD flooding has affected Santos’ coal seam gas (CSG) fields in southwest Queensland, but will not impact the company’s plans for first exports in 2015 at their LNG plant in Gladstone. Santos recently announced its final investment decision which gave the green light for GLNG - a US$16 billion project off Port Curtis. While the floods won’t affect the long term plans for the project, on the ground progress has been held up temporarily. Santos’ construction and exploration work which is underway at the Fairview CSG field, north of Roma, has come to a halt. “The drilling and some of the construction work in the field has been suspended and will be reviewed next month,” a Santos spokesperson told Shift Miner Magazine.

“We are not sure how long the field will be closed to heavy machinery.” “There are no delays in the Gladstone area and the only thing that is not happening is in the upstream area and our gas production is unaffected,” the spokesperson said. Gladstone Regional mayor Gail Sellers said she expects some of the port city’s LNG projects will be held up. She said there are reports QGC’s (BG Group’s LNG project) operations have been hindered and expects there will now be even more pressure competing for skilled workers. “I understand they [QGC] can’t get their pipes out of Gladstone and have no room to store more pipes. They need to wait until the roads are drier.” “Everything is held up now because of the flooding and now machinery and workforce will be diverted to road repair with flood recovery and those sorts of things.” Premier Anna Bligh said the millions of dollars in royalties from LNG projects will generate will help the state’s economic recovery after the floods. “At times like this we need to be able to look to the future with hope and optimism and the LNG industry will play an important part in our state’s recover from this flood crisis,” she said. GLNG will create 5000 jobs in construction in addition to 1000 permanent jobs in production. It is expected that 1500 jobs will be created in the first half of this year.

“The drilling and some of the construction work in the field has been suspended and will be reviewed next month.”

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News

104th EDITION. 2011

Time to deal with an emergency By Michael Roche

Like many Brisbane citizens, power to my home was cut during the flood but my wife and I were fortunate to be housed in the city until power was restored to our suburb. Moving around the CBD, I was struck by the number of building basements from which floodwater was being pumped into stormwater drains and back into the Brisbane River. Coming from the highly regulated resource industries, I wondered who was policing this activity, but then I remembered: this is an emergency. Buildings had to be pumped out quickly to get them back into action. On behalf of the Queensland resources industry, I spent a lot of time in December meeting with the Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM), among whose responsibilities is the regulation of water discharges from mines. They were held against a background of well-above average rainfall across the state’s coalfields from August 2010; and it simply hadn’t stopped raining. With water building up in mine dams and pits and predictions of a major rainfall event over Christmas (Cyclone Tasha), QRC and DERM discussed how mines and the regulator would handle recurring inundations.

Unlike city buildings, mines can’t discharge water off-site as needs dictate. Mines operate under strict environmental regulations, the rigidity of which contributed to the build-up of water in coal mines over many months.

Queensland’s Environment Protection Act (EP Act) provides a mechanism called a Transitional Environmental Program (TEP) that in extenuating circumstances allows individual mines to discharge water outside normal parameters, but in a manner safe to the environment. DERM officers have done a magnificent job processing 23 TEP applications to date and working very long hours and giving up

their holidays to deal with this emergency. Contrary to a recent report in The Courier-Mail, mines have not sought, nor has DERM approved the discharge of “toxins” or “contaminated floodwater” from coal mines. As DERM points out on its website, the water being discharged may have elevated levels of soluble salt, but usually at levels safe for stock watering and irrigation. When most of central and southern Queensland’s creeks and rivers were in flood or flowing strongly, a massive dilution factor worked in favour of the TEP process. But now many of the creeks where mines need to discharge water are returning to normal levels but still feeding into strongly flowing rivers. It’s understood that DERM is dealing with another 16 TEP applications and that several involve requests to discharge into low flow creeks from mines where operations are being severely hampered by excess water. Miners are fearful that they are also vulnerable to uncontrolled water releases in the event of more heavy wet season rain, which forecasters say is on the cards. Right now, the QRC estimates operations at 85 per cent of Queensland’s coal

mines are partly or completely impaired by excess water. The TEP was never envisaged as a mechanism to handle such an industry-wide emergency. The state government must seriously consider using its emergency powers to authorise the speedy release of excess water from mines. This will not only avert the danger of uncontrolled releases in the near future but also get the state’s leading export industry back to work and delivering the royalties that Queensland so desperately needs to fund flood recovery. The coal industry is not seeking a leave pass to discharge “toxins” or “contaminated floodwater” but regulatory recognition that these are not normal times and that the biggest reconstruction in Queensland’s peacetime history demands all hands on deck. Michael Roche is the chief executive of the Queensland Resources Council

“The TEP was never envisaged as a mechanism to handle such an industry-wide emergency.”

Miners jump into flood help with two feet DESPITE grappling with their own internal flooding problems, mining companies have now contributed about $25 million to help communities affected by Queensland’s shocking floods. The majority of the money has been contributed to both the Premier’s Flood Appeal and through direct donations to local communities and charities. Added to this has been a significant contribution of in-kind support of people, machines and accommodation. BHP even flew a football team across the country to help with the flood

clean up in Brisbane. Mine workers who were initially unable to get to work helped with recovery efforts in flood-ravaged towns like Rockhampton, Theodore, Emerald, Chinchilla and Dalby. “I’ve been really proud to be the Chief Executive of the QRC and see the amount of money donated to the Premier’s flood relief appeal and some of the local appeals,” said the Queensland Resources Council Michael Roche. “The mining workforce has been well used in towns that needed them.” “You could see mine workers standing

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shoulder to shoulder with SES and residents, sandbagging and cleaning up.” Two companies, Anglo American at Dawson and Ensham at Emerald provided critical accommodation solutions during the flooding in nearby communities. Of the 1000 people evacuated from Emerald, Ensham mine was able accommodate around 100 families by opening up the

doors of its mining accommodation village. You can read more about Anglo American’s help with the Theodore evacuation in our story on page 9. Among the mining companies that have donated to the Premier’s appeal are BMA, Macarthur Coal, Rio Tinto, Xstrata, Newcrest Mining, Anglo American, ConocoPhillips and Cracow Gold.

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Page 11 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


CQ BUSINESS 104th EDITION. 2011

Buyer’s market for Yarwun on track imported steel for 2012 deadline BUSINESSES ramping up for “boom 2� are enjoying a buyer’s market for steel, with low prices and plenty of product. The Australian Steel Association’s CEO Jack Howard said abundant supplies and lower prices reflected less demand and the rising amount of imported steel.  “We [steel retailers] have gone from chocolates to boiled lollies,� he said. “People couldn’t get steel in 2008, but now there is an oversupply because demand for whatever reason has disappeared.� “I think one of the problems is that when people couldn’t get steel in 2008, they looked at other supply channels like importation.� “Once those channels were opened, they stayed opened and adding to that, underlying demand just hasn’t been there.� Mr Howard is concerned about the emerging trend to import pre-fabricated or modular steel. He said those finished modules can be bolt-

ed into place like a maccano set, and mean less work for local engineering businesses. “ We are no longer value-adding to steel locally,� he said. “As an example, at the Gorgon project in Western Australia they will need 260,000 tonnes of steel, and I believe that all of it is being shipped in as pre-fabricated steel.� “One of the problems in 2008, was that Australian steel producers didn’t have the capacity to supply the market, and people don’t forget that.� He said there are often huge price variations between the imported and Australianproduced steel. He has also urged the government to investigate whether some imported pre-fabricated steel might be avoiding levies and quality standards that apply to the importation of basic steel products. “From my point of view we want to see both a viable domestic steel industry, and a competitive imported steel industry,� he said.

CQ roads assessed, with bill in the billions

RIO Tinto is on track to double its aluminium production at Gladstone by 2012 after successfully increasing its port unloading capacity by around 20 per cent. Operating from a new 253-metre wharf extension at Fisherman’s Landing, Rio has introduced dual bauxite unloading facilities that will reduce ship unloading times from 60 to 48 hours. This will allow the port to supply the increasing demand for bauxite - which is the key ingredient in the production of aluminium. General manager of operations Mike Dunstan said dual unloading at the wharf was a key milestone in the refinery’s growth over the coming year. “The dual unloading facility will enhance the Gladstone region’s current and future viability as a key industry location for the provision of alumina and aluminium,� he said. “The capability of a dual unload will

ensure less waiting time for bauxite vessels at anchor, resulting in less traffic at sea in the area.� Rio Tinto Alcan also announced this week that operations are back to normal after recent wet weather forced them to declare “force majeure� on supply contracts.

MAIN Roads and council inspectors from across the state have descended on central Queensland to try and gauge the extend of flood damage to the region’s roads. Significant stretches of the states 33,000 kilometre main road network has been damaged, with Main Roads estimating the repair bill will sit in the billions. Main Roads Minister Craig Wallace said the final amount could be more than that of the 1974 and 1991 floods combined. “Very few stretches of road have been left untouched by weakened surfaces, potholes, verges and road base washed away or more serious structural damage,� he said. Mr Wallace said it’s too early to know the full extent of the damage. “Frankly we just don’t know the final

impact yet,� he said. As soon as flood waters receded, Main Roads inspectors began working in central Queensland to decide what areas require immediate action. So far inspectors have discovered hot spots at: Oaky Creek Bridge on the Dawson Highway between Calliope and Biloela; Gogango Creek on the Capricorn Highway west of Westwood; and Ludwig Leichhardt Bridge on the Capricorn Highway at Comet. “Wherever we can, our engineers are working around the clock to inspect and assess damage, and prioritise emergency works,� Mr Wallace said. The Prime Minister has also announced a one-off increase to the Medicare levy to help pay for the damage bill.

Rio Tinto Alcan has increased its port capacity at Fisherman’s Landing by 20 per cent

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Page 12 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


CQ BUSINESS 104th EDITION. 2011

TAKE OVER DEAL: The MAC’s Mark and Andrew Maloney and Peter McCann on a recent visit to Oil States. They were greeted by 200 enthusiastic workers all wearing Aussie attire.

The MAC predicts busy year in Bowen Basin OCCUPANCY numbers might have dropped off in early January, but The MAC Services Group is predicting 2011 will be a bumper year. We are bracing ourselves for a very, very busy year,” said the Mac’s chief operating officer Chris Jury.

“Mines have got all the catch up to do from the floods, the coal price is going through the roof and if you look at all the new projects on the go we are going to be flat out.” The MAC was recently sold to US-run Oil States International, and Mr Jury has

predicted that change will have an impact on business growth in the coalfields. “I think what you will see in an increased in our growth rate because Oil States is a $3.1 billion company so they have the ability to do a lot of things that The MAC as a

small company couldn’t do with their balance sheet.” The past month has seen occupancy at some of The Mac’s Bowen Basin villages drop off during the flooding and aftermath. Some villages were cut off during the wet weather, in particular Coppabella was isolated during flash flooding in December. But regional manager of operations Simon Spencer said overall the MAC wasn’t heavily impacted. “We had some damage to internal roads and some of our access roads were cut off, but that is not unusual given the state of the weather,” he said. “As for food supplies, at this time of year we hold 14-days worth of stock so we really only had trouble with fresh fruit and vegetables but once again we weren’t on our own.” Some staff were unable to make it to work because they were flooded in at home, but Mr Spencer said the same applied to guests so it was not a huge concern. “Our occupancy was well down in January because our clients couldn’t get to work but we are back to normal now.” “These areas [in CQ], unlike the southeast corner, are built for flooding so the water gets away pretty quickly.” “We are back to normal now and it could have been much worse.”

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Page 13 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


around town 104th EDITION. 2011

Moranbah’s Australia Day celebrations kicked off at 7am with a grueling triathalon, followed by a free BBQ breakfast and children’s amusements at Town Square.  The day concluded with an official Australia Day ceremony.

Dion and Tracey McConnell

AUSSIE! AUSSIE! AUSSIE!

Paige Kay

Jack, Riley, Eli and Melissa Patterson

Linda Squire and Bambi Botor

Naomi and Oram McGilvray

Rohan and Wyatt Setter

Dale and Mark Barbeler

Josie Barron, Stella Salty and Angela Wallace

Trysett Cochrane

Back: Jeany Elliott and Britney Clement Front: Hannah Radke and Ainsley Clement from Moranbah Guides

Holding a social event you want photographed?  Call the Shift Miner office on 4921 4333 to let us know.  You can also give our office a bell if you’d like a copy of any of the photos in this edition.

Page 14 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


around town 104th EDITION. 2011

BACK TO SCHOOL

Moranbah State School Administration Staff - Back: Theresa Malone and Tania Mellor Front: Nicole McKenzie

Charlotte Turns and Dorian Thornberry

The first week of school got off to a fabulous start at Moranbah State School.  There were a few tears, but most of these were from anxious parents who were farewelling their Prep ‘babies’ on the first day of school. Prep teacher Chris Neven with Joshua Zealey and Brody Chubb-Grimes

Moranbah State School - Deputy Principal Heidi James with new Principal, Mr Jeff Jepson

Matthew Maidment, Caitlin Van Der Kruk and CJ Williams

Keelee James and Imogen Smith

Denvah West, Jordan Norgate and Dakota Norgate

Moranbah East State School Teachers and Aides - Back: Lana Cattell and Prue Collins. Front: Amanda Jepson, Karly Aldridge and Carmen Gallagher

Moranbah East State School teachers and Aides - Back: Nicole Cowley and Jo Coldrey. Front: Debbie Andrews, Gill Blake, Jenny Crowley, Hannah Lowery and Helen Donneley

Zayleah, Azmin and Haydee Brice

Moranbah State School Teachers and Aides - Gillian Campbell, Brenton Clutterbuck, Margie Maidment and Erin Milton

BUY THIS AND MANY OTHER IMAGES AT

www.shiftminer.com Shift Miner magazine – bringing the mining community closer together Page 15 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


stuff to the editor 104th EDITION. 2011

Stuff to the Editor Shift Miner Magazine received this email from coal identity Viv Forbes who is also a geologist and farmer in the Bremer River Valley. What do you think? Text us your thoughts on 0428 154 653: There is a growing chorus seeking to ban building on flood prone land. Many settlements started near a permanent water supply on good alluvial soils, often at places where pioneer tracks crossed rivers or where pioneering ships berthed in river estuaries. All such land is likely to be flood prone. It is not “certain” to flood in any particular year – it is “certain” to flood some time. Similar water risks go far beyond flood plain inundation and include events such as flash flood, tsunami, tidal surge, dam failure, land slip, mud slide, wave erosion, storm damage, avalanches and advancing glaciers; even rising sea levels if you live as long as Methuselah. Will we also ban development on all of this land? There is some risk associated with every block of land and the risk varies from place to place. Some land brings higher risks from lack of water such as drought, bush fires and sand storms; or is located in unstable places where earth tantrums bring volcanic eruptions, earth-quakes, fault movements or subsidence. Then there is property threatened by noxious neighbours such as wind towers, old mine workings or risky dam developments.

Someone could probably develop a “ban building” case for every bit of land on earth. Whether he knows it or not, every land occupier assumes the various risks associated with that land. He should be free to do so. The price paid for the land generally reflects these risks and it is the responsibility of buyers and their advisers to enquire about flood and other risks. But other people should not be forced to share that risk. Risk sharing should be a matter of free choice between every owner and his chosen insurer, even if that is “self insurance”. Insurance contracts should be clear and not deceptive and contracts should be enforced, but insurers and property owners should be free to decide all matters regarding insurance. The worst risk to all landowners is government action. These include blanket bans involving Wild Rivers, Strategic Cropping land, parks, World Heritage, reservations, wildlife corridors, vegetation bans, green bans, resumptions, rezoning, interference and confiscations. These seizures are generally un-insurable, un-predictable, unappealable and un-compensated. What should governments do? Governments should publish clear flood plans and make sure they are readily available. Every landowner seeking building approvals must be advised clearly of the flood history of that land. In national disasters the most useful things they can do is get roads, water, power and airfields working as soon as possible, and clean up all rubbish on streets. Use of defence forces and equipment is sensible – taxpayers are paying for them no matter what they do and much of disaster work gives them real experience at logistics and management in difficult situations. But no bans. If we had banned development on “flood prone” or “high risk” areas half of Australia would be given back to the bush. Viv Forbes, Rosevale

“Boundary Hill mine - bogged shovel took a week to get out” sent in anonymously

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Got something to share? Send us your text messages or phone photos to 0428 154 653 Or email to shift.miner@gmail.com

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Breakfast

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Mornings

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Page 16 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011

Afternoons

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FAIR DINKUM 104th EDITION. 2011

Fair Dinkum! IN AUSTRALIA - Have you heard the one about the central Queensland pig farmer that lost everything in the floods? Baralaba pig farmer Sid Everingham was asked by a local reporter if he’d lost any stock during the disaster. The following day came the headline: 30,000 PIGS SWEPT AWAY - PIGS FLOAT DOWN THE DAWSON. That headline came a shock to the farmer, and the rest of the town. Sid had actually told the young journalist in question he had lost “30 sows and pigs”.

Frank the Tank’s

arrested for drink driving a horse. Jose Rios, 33, and Samuel Olivo Jr, 48 were charged with driving while intoxicated after police arrested them for riding a horse and mule down a crowded street in downtown Austin. The two cowboys were inviting passers-by to take pictures and pet their horse and mule, which police said was impeding traffic and could have caused an accident. Officers conducted a field sobriety test on the two and then charged them with driving while intoxicated. Those charges were later dropped because the legal definition of a motor vehicle in relation to DUI charges is too vague, but Mr Rios was charged with public intoxication.

IN BELARUS - A fox with an itchy finger has gone from the hunted to the hunter, shooting a man with his own gun. The unnamed 40-year-old hunter was trying to kill the fox with the butt of his gun after first shooting it from a distance. However, in the process, the animal somehow managed to pull the trigger of the man’s gun with its paw, wounding him in the leg. Friends took the man to hospital where he later escaped and went into hiding. According to Belarus Police the animal “fiercely resisted” and its the first time they have ever heard of anything like this before. “The hunter couldn’t believe it either. He was in shock,” they said. Fox hunting is popular in the region and foxes are not protected because they transmit rabies.

“Streakin” good love advice Dear Frank, I have been seeing a really great lady for a few months now, and everything has been going really well. Except for one thing - she has an undisciplined 14-year-old son who is rude to me, rude to his mother, and rude to just about everyone else he meets. I am really serious about this woman, but I feel like I need to straighten this kid out for the both of us to be happy. Is it wrong to play ‘stepfather’ after such a short amount of time? John, Rockhampton

IN GERMANY - Two British pensioners have placed to much faith in global positioning systems (GPS) after they crashed into a church following directions on their in-car navigation system. While driving their Renault in the evening on a back road near the Austrian border, the GPS system instructed the couple to turn right where there was no road. “They were confused and didn’t notice that the navigation system was faulty,” a police spokeswoman said. The 76-year-old driver then plowed into the side of the village church, writing off the car, knocking a picture off the wall and damaging the building’s foundations. Total damages were some 25,000 euros, and the couple, who were traveling to France, spent the evening in hospital recuperating from minor injuries.

IN AMERICA - Unlike in Australia, two Texans have proved that you can’t be

Dear John, This is quite a coincidence, my lady friend and I play ‘stepfather’ sometimes. She dresses up in a school girl costume and I pretend to come home drunk and help her with her ‘homework’. We discovered it in a book called 100 Highly Inappropriate Role Plays, but that’s a story for another time. In short John, no, it is not wrong to want to discipline your partner’s child, in fact, I frequently find myself wanting to discipline complete strangers’ children. Recently I was grocery shopping when I came across an alarmingly obstreperous child in the frozen foods section. His poor mother was so embarrassed, she

Two British pensioners have placed to much faith in global positioning systems (GPS) after they crashed into a church following directions on their in-car navigation system.

GET PREPARED FOR THE MINING

Sensible Susan

Numbers You Numbers Numbers Can CountYou On** You

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John, This is an all too common problem for couples with children from previous relationships. You should not try to replace the boy’s father, but instead attempt to form a bond with him as a

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For more information visit www.auditbureau.org.au

had no choice but to walk away from him in an attempt to force him to break the tantrum and follow her. At that moment I decided that something had to be done, someone needed to take action in an attempt to straighten out the younger generation, and who better than me? While his mother’s back was turned I abducted that child and have been keeping him in my garage ever since. On a daily basis he is taught various life lessons (Tuesday is arts and crafts). When I feel he is ready to return to his mother I will release him back into the frozen foods section where I found him. Now, I’m sure there are some softies out there who consider this course of action a little too heavy-handed, and I can tell by all the ‘Missing’ posters in the main street that his parents are not on board with my plan, but I can virtually guarantee my methods will get results. In your case, John, I don’t think kidnapping is the answer. I recommend you start actively letting this teenager know who’s boss. The next time he sasses you, sell his Playstation on eBay, or slash the tyres on his bike. If these tactics are ineffective you can always resort to more desperate measures. For example, you could force your prospective stepson to wear a dress to school every day. He’ll endure so many beatings in the playground that he’ll be too exhausted to cause any trouble at home. As a word of warning though, there is a slight chance this course of action could promote a tendency toward transvestism. However, in my view, you are better off with a wellbehaved son who dresses as a girl, than an ill-behaved, regularly dressed son. Frank

friend or mentor. Hopefully, if he comes to respect you as a role model, he will be more receptive to your advice regarding his ill-behaviour, and may be more likely to settle down. Talk to your partner about ways in which you can address her son’s behaviour together, that way you should be able to devise some strategies regarding appropriate punishments for poor behaviour, and positive reinforcement for appropriate behaviour. Susan

For more information visit www.auditbureau.org.au

Forand more information www.auditbureau.org.au Meet us: level 1, 214 Quay St Rockhampton QLD 4700 – or call us we will visit come to you!

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If you have a question for Frank and Susan Email Us at: franksusan.shiftminer@gmail.com

Page 17 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


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Page 18 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011

CAR FOR SALE Monaro HG/SS Chev,308,3 speed auto,10 blt diff, polished 600 holley, elecrtic blue holley fuel pump,elect windows,dual exhaust,19 inc mags,new battery -leads, $38500 ono, 0439872215

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CARAVAN FOR SALE 16’ Jayco pop top caravan, single beds, new curtains/ 3 way fridge/ tyres, gas stove/oven, r/o awning with sides, RWC, gas certificate, always kept under cover, $15,500. (07) 4922 5037 or 0418 879 284

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k.pdf 2010

5 minute fiction

OFF SHIFT 104th EDITION. 2011

by Bernard S. Jansen

“Let’s Go”

1

2

3

4

5

9

6

7

Tony walked up toward the open garage door. A Harley Davidson motorcycle had been wheeled back out of the garage onto the driveway. The water mark was up over the headlight.

ACROSS

8

1. Wishful thinker

10

5. Ungainly

11

9. From the menu (1,2,5)

12

13

10. Cuba’s capital

Tony said, “G’day. We heard you could do with a hand.”

12. Overmuch 14

15

13. Savoy or Hilton

16

19

20

16. Entertainers

21 22

25

24

The man nodded. “Yeah,” he said. “I’m Keith.”

14. Very eager

18

17

27

“Tony.” Tony introduced the others. “So Keith, do you have a plan?”

19. Arise (from)

23

21. Had prior knowledge

26

28

24. Aggravated

“Not really.” Keith shrugged. “Never done this before.”

25. Unmodified

“Well, we have. A couple of times.”

27. Goes on all fours

A few of the blokes chuckled. They’d been working together four days straight now, eleven hours a day, cleaning the mud and muck out of people’s homes. Any people: young families and old ladies, the well-to-do and the dirt poor. The flood had put the normal social distinctions on hold for a while, and replaced them with new ones. Now there were those whose homes were flooded, and those whose weren’t; those who helped others, and those who didn’t; those with insurance, and those without.

28. Deeply touching 29

29. Igloo dweller

30

30. Influenced

2 9 8

4 6 9

8 5 3

DOWN 1. Endorsed 2. Roofing grass 3. ... & groans

1

8 7

4. Taking (exam)

5 2

2 6

6. Abhorrent 7. Dining hour

6

4 3

8. 12-month-old horse

Tony nodded. “Good. Let’s have a look.”

15. Series of tennis comp wins (5,4)

The water had come up waist high through the house. That meant any stuff up on the benches was borderline, and that cupboards and fridges may have floated around. There was a step up from the garage into the house, with no lip on the threshold; good for hosing out.

17. Second-rate

1 8 3

20. Large Australian birds

2 1 6

MEDIUM

21. Start of match (4-3) 22. Shocked 23. Revised (text) 26. Quarrel

# 94

LAST EDITION’S SOLUTIONS C L O B A W E P B

AM I RO M A U N T S J HOA R I P P L A Z M N AGE N T S EME N

B E R S A O N E S S A E T L E T T E T C RU E H E D E D N H I E A P L A N S T D A L E E S D S S T

O A# R 93D L I H L I A I L N A N E N C RCU T E S O A I Y A C T E D W T L GA L I S E R R S E E P E S T A B R D A Z I L A I A I N

4 6 2 8 1 5 9 3 7

5 1 8 3 9 7 2 4 6

9 7 3 6 2 4 5 1 8

Keith raised his hands. “Look Tony, if you’re gonna help, you’re in charge.”

11. Salesmen

18. Listeners’ forum, ... radio

5 7 9

Inside the garage stood a man, looking dazed.

2 9 4 5 7 6 3 8 1

8 5 1 2 4 3 6 7 9

6 3 7 1 8 9 4 5 2

3 8 5 9 6 1 7 2 4

7 2 9 4 5 8 1 6 3

1 4 6 7 3 2 8 9 5

Inside, the house stank, badly. There was the usual flood smell of mud and rotting carpets, but this had a little something extra: sewage. Every house stank, but these were the worst, and there was no getting used to it. They all had to work to hold back the urge to vomit. Out the back was a covered patio, beyond that was a muddy lawn. Tony made some quick decisions, then spoke up loudly so that everyone could here. “All right, here’s the plan. We’ll get the patio hosed out and clean first. Give it a good scrub. That’ll be for the

clean and dry stuff.” He turned to Keith. “Have you taken photos of everything for insurance.” “Don’t have any.” “Right. That makes it simple. Everything that’s destroyed, goes out on the footpath. If something may be salvageable, out on the back lawn. Let’s go.” Keith took Tony aside for a moment. “Why not put the clean stuff in the garage?” “It’s lower than the house, and is the best place to push all the water out with squidgees.” “Never thought of that.” “Neither did we, the first time.” Tim smiled. “Come on mate, let’s start.” Three guys started cleaning down the patio. Everyone else started carrying wrecked stuff out to the front of the house. There was a lot of wrecked stuff. “Maybe we could wash the mud out of the sofas,” said Keith, hesitantly. “Don’t think of it as mud,” said Tim. “Think of it as poo.” “Why’s that?” “Because there’s plenty in all this.” “Hey?” “Did you sand-bag every drain and every toilet bowl?” “Well, no.” “Well, your toilets flush both ways mate.” Keith went pale, then vomited were he stood, onto the lounge-room floor. Two other blokes went out in sympathy. Tim could feel it in the back of his throat but managed to keep it together. He took a hose and washed the spew out into the garage, and down the driveway. After an hour of hot, sweaty work, everything that was clean and dry had been removed to the patio. The lounge and dining room were empty of everything, including carpet and underlay. One man remained, lifting up the timber strips around the room that the carpet had once been nailed to. Everyone else had moved onto the bedrooms. In another hour, they’d finished hosing out the mud. Tim called his team together. “Time for lunch,” he said. “Let’s go.”

Bernard S. Jansen is 32, married has three young boys. He lives in Emerald, works as an engineer at a local coal mine and is active in his local church. Read more of Bernard’s writing online at surgebin.blogspot.com or email him at bernard.jansen@gmail.com GOT AN IDEA FOR A STORY? Let Bernard know - email him at bernard.jansen@gmail.com or hop on his blog surgebin.blogspot.com

Page 19 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


OFF SHIFT 104th EDITION. 2011

One life one chance for CQ miner

READY TO CLIMB: You don’t get a body like that eating bikkies in the crib room

ACTION ADVENTURE: Luke has spent 6 weeks training for the climb in Thailand

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Page 20 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011

“ONE life one chance.” That’s the motto 26-year-old Luke Richmond has adopted. Luke flew out on Australia Day for a mountaineering adventure he has been planning for years. The underground coal miner, who most recently worked at BMA’s Crinum East mine last year, has set his sights on scaling the world’s seven highest summits. By the time you’re reading this he will already be at base camp on Argentina’s Aconcagua summit - a mountain that rises an impressive 6962 metres above sea level. “Actually I totally forgot that it was Australia Day I was so wrapped up in my own thing, but it is kind of cool in its own way that it has happened like this,” he told Shift Miner Magazine. Luke has spent the last six weeks in Thailand in gruelling physical fitness sessions that combined martial arts with boxing. He’s the first to admit he was pushed to the limits. “The sessions were tough, and there were a couple of lads there who were super fit and it was hard to keep up.” “But I’m glad to report I am injury free and ready for the climb.” Luke is one of ten in a group that includes a couple of Aussies, three Chileans, an American, Canadians and some Kiwis who all want to have their heads in the Argentinian clouds. “None of us know each other, and most of us are at about the same level, we have

READY TO CLIMB: You don’t get a body like that eating bikkies in the crib room

done a bit of climbing but nothing like this,” said Luke. “Right now I am just so excited.” “I have done the training and I just can’t wait to get up there.” The climb will take up to 25 days, depending on weather and if anyone in the group gets altitude sickness. “That is the main consideration [the sickness].” “It just depends how you react, some people can go straight to the top, others can’t.” “The closest I have been to these altitudes is 5900 metres and this is another k on top of that.” “You can get really fatigued, a lot of headaches and often you really don’t want to each.” Once Luke has made it to the top, he will be back to Australia in March to hunt around for a few more sponsors before heading off for another training session in Washington. He’ll then scale the Denali summit in Alaska before tackling Russia’s Elbrus peak. Will Luke be back at work in CQ in the near future? “That all depends on sponsorship I guess - if I don’t get enough then yep I’ll be back in CQ before the end of the year earning enough to get me through to the next adventure!” If you want to keep track of his progress then check out his blog at: www.olocadventures.com.au


Back in August, former Shift Miner staffer Lincoln “Linx” Bertoli decided to ditch the comforts of a steady pay packet and go and live the dream. Lucky bugger. For the rest of us stuck working to earn our keep in this cruel world, Linx will now taunt us with a regular column in “Off Shift”. If you can’t be there yourself, you might as well live vicariously through someone else... and just hope something unfortunate happens to him out there on the open road...

OFF SHIFT

The arse end of the world? One of the more unusual exhibits in the nation’s capital

hate it, some wouldn’t know where to find it and some simply couldn’t give two hoots. I’m still undecided. Even now after safely returning I am very much on the fence. You see my time spent in Canberra wasn’t that of your average 28-year-old; 82-year-old yes! But 28? Not so much.

Every year, around September, Canberra’s Commonwealth Gardens come alive with more than a million flowers. Floriade is billed as Australia’s celebration of Spring -a combination of colourful blooms, floral art, crafts and horticultural displays. The weather in the nation’s capital is devilishly seasonal and unpredictable so bulb varieties, plant species, soil types and plant-

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From the moment you make plans to go somewhere; to venture forth into the great unknown, be it across the globe, across the country, even across the street, people are inclined to give you their opinion on why you should - or indeed should not - go to said destination. And there is no better example than Canberra. The nation’s capital is quite the conundrum when it comes to tourists; some love it, some

ing methods are continually tested to ensure the million plus flowers bloom on cue. Floriade history aside I wasn’t totally convinced as the Hilux rolled into town. After constant reassurance from Marnie I reluctantly agreed to grin and bear it and thought, if nothing else, it would be a good chance to flex my wee photographic muscle and snap some good shots. As we wandered the countless rows of blooms, I listened intently as the resident volunteers pointed out the difference between Tulipa Black Diamond and Tulipa Top Parrot Bloom. From here it was onto the various wine marquees, stalls and show tents and a herd of fantastic fibreglass Zebra. And so on it went for the better part of a Tuesday. As I mentioned I didn’t love Floriade… nor did I hate it. I probably wouldn’t go back… nor would I discourage someone else from attending. If nothing else I learned that Floriade stems from the Latin word floriat, which means to design with flowers and that fibreglass zebras make for some interesting photos. Fact!

Page 21 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


OFF SHIFT 104th EDITION. 2011

Bait YEPPOON Well, the water is settling down and the colour is no longer Bovril brown, according to Adrian from The Secret Spot at Yeppoon. In fact, Adrian even reckons the water is starting to get a tinge of blue back into it... and in even better news the fish are biting. Coorooman Creek has been fishing well, and if you want prawns they are in abundance everywhere from the marina to the Causeway to Statue Bay. “With the amount of water we have had it will be fantastic for prawning for the next while,” says Adrian. Same goes on the barra front, and from this week (1Feb) you can start keeping them, with barra season open again. Out wide, and there have been some good catches. Adrian himself went out recently and grabbed two 50-pound golden trevalis and eight spanish mackerel (threw two back of course) and some large mouth nannagai and yellow sweetlip. The marina is fishing well, although it is tidal with queens and trevali at the top of the

tide and blue salmon and barra at the bottom. There have also been reports of mackerel off Baron Island, and black jew and grunter off the Pinnacles. If you’re into crabs, Corio Bay is the place to be with plenty catching up to 10 crabs each session, according to Adrian. And one more tip - beach fishing is going off at the moment. Adrian says get some live worms or nippers and you will catch yourself a nice feed of whiting, flathead or bream any day of the week around the Capricorn Coast. “Try anywhere from Corio Bay right through to Bangalee there is miles and miles of beachfront and hardly a rod in sight!”

GLADSTONE The fishing has not been so good further south in Gladstone - it’s been blowing 30 knots most days which isn’t ideal. Dylan from Pat’s Tackle World said while people have been poking about catching a few barra that’s about it. Surprisingly, Lake Awoonga is not fishing well.

Tide Times

Dec/Jan

MACKAY Gladstone

Mon 31 Tue 1 Wed 2 Thu 3 Time Ht Time Ht

Time Ht

Time Ht

Banter

“The dam has gone really dead, it was good after the rain but maybe after that it spooked the fish,” says Dylan. “If you want and try and lure them out using B52s and try out in the weeds.” Crabs and prawns are around in good numbers - try around the Narrows, South Trees and Calliope Creek.

Some of the Capricorn Coast’s youngest fishermen show off their catch!

MACKAY Further north in Mackay, and once again prawns are in abundance especially in the estuaries around Seaforth. According to Greg from Reef Marine people are counting down the days until barra season, with plenty about. “There is lots of barra being accidentally caught at the moment so that’s a good sign,” he says. “We’ve had some decent rain for a change so we should be in for a good season.” Out wide, and it’s been patchy even for commercial operators - although if you stick with it you could bag some red throat, grassies and nannagai. Murky creeks are still swarming with

catfish, but Greg reckons it should start to clear up soon. “As soon as the creeks drop a bit you should find some good whiting and grunter around.” The dams are fishing well, and a tip from Greg is if you’re looking for barra wait for a full moon and head out at night. If you have a good photo or fishing yarn send it through to our resident bait chucker-

angus.peacocke@shiftminer.com

Your weather forecast With Mike Griffin

Fri 4 Sat 5 Sun 6 Time Ht Time Ht Time Ht

0118 1.05 0203 0.93 0239 0.85 0312 0.82 0340 0.83 0406 0.88 0432 0.97 0745 4.17 0824 4.24 0858 4.26 0929 4.23 0957 4.17 1023 4.08 1049 3.94 1403 0.94 1441 0.85 1517 0.82 1548 0.82 1617 0.84 1643 0.90 1708 0.98 2001 3.48 2040 3.58 2114 3.64 2145 3.67 2214 3.68 2242 3.67 2310 3.63 0310 0.89 0352 0.81 0428 0.80 0458 0.84 0527 0.92 0553 1.04 0019 4.71 0928 5.77 1004 5.81 1037 5.79 1107 5.71 1134 5.59 1200 5.42 0619 1.23 1602 0.97 1638 0.94 1710 0.98 1738 1.03 1804 1.09 1828 1.17 1224 5.18 2147 4.69 2223 4.74 2255 4.77 2324 4.77 2352 4.76

Mon 7 MACKAY Gladstone

shop

1850 1.30

Tue 8 Wed 9 Thu 10 Fri 11 Sat 12 Sun 13

Time Ht Time Ht Time Ht Time Ht Time Ht Time Ht Time Ht 0458 1.11 0529 1.31 0018 3.42 0104 3.28 0210 3.18 0338 3.22 0503 3.44 1115 3.76 1143 3.53 0602 1.55 0650 1.80 0815 1.98 1008 1.94 1131 1.70 1733 1.10 1758 1.26 1215 3.27 1257 3.02 1410 2.81 1550 2.75 1730 2.90 2341 3.54

1827 1.44 1912 1.61 2037 1.73 2210 1.65 2324 1.45

0047 4.61 0118 4.45 0156 4.25 0251 4.07 0421 4.02 0558 4.28 0029 1.88 0647 1.49 0717 1.81 0756 2.17 0855 2.50 1046 2.63 1233 2.35 0706 4.73 1249 4.87 1315 4.51 1347 4.12 1440 3.74 1629 3.52 1814 3.67 1339 1.91 1914 1.48 1942 1.70 2018 1.95 2121 2.17 2307 2.17

Page 22 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011

1923 4.00

Rivers fall – Watch for tropical cyclones Week 1 - After the devastating floods closing highways (Carnarvon/Bruce/Leichhardt/Capricorn) and causing inundation the rivers have fallen to acceptable levels. The Dawson River recorded heights to 16 metres and now continues to fall below 5 metres at Knebworth. The Isaacs River at Yatten reached 17 metres at its peak. The junction of the Fitzroy/Dawson/Mackenzie Rivers at Riverslea jumped to 27 metres just after Christmas before falling rapidly to 5 metres on Boxing Day. This gave a peak of 9.2 metres for the Fitzroy River at Rockhampton – similar to the 1991 flood. Fairbairn Dam is now sitting at more than 100 per cent capacity. Emerald reflected the heavy rain throughout the Coalfields around Christmas. Only two out of the last 13 days of December recorded no rainfall. Emerald recorded 264mm for December 2010. This was almost 300 per cent more than the average. The annual total for 2010 was 1099mm; almost double the long term average.

Temperatures soared to 36C across the Coalfields and 40C west of the Gemfields recently. This made for direct sun temperatures of over 50C ( 26-28 Jan). All the while a small ex-tropical Cyclone Anthony is about regenerate off the Central Coast. If it crosses the coast between Bowen and Townsville it will affect the north eastern Coalfields with gusty winds and heavy rain early in the week. This could cause some rain and possible storms for the western Coalfields by mid week. Then watch for another cyclone moving into the Coral Sea mid to late week to form New Caledonia way. Will it move south or come onto the coast? Boaties! The strong winds look likely to whip up seas above 3 metres. There may be a small window of opportunity Tuesday/Wednesday. Week 2 - the record high SOI with values in the mid 20s continues. It has already heralded one of the wettest starts to the summer on record. The Monsoon Trough is poised to return south and bring more rain. Be ready for more floods!


Your Health 104th EDITION. 2011

EXPERT ADVICE For those too busy or embarrassed to ask the important questions about their health Well 2011 is finally here. Firstly I would just like to make a special mention to those of you affected by the local floods, from the staff at Core Health Consulting and myself, we send our best wishes to all of you, and hope that the clean up and recovery of your land, homes and families are under way and going smoothly. This is my first column of the year so we can take a look at new beginnings, your health, your habits and the areas in your life you wish to change. Let us concentrate on nutrition for this segment, but it does mean you have a little bit of homework to do, so get ready to pull out your pen and paper. Firstly, create a food diary. A food diary is always a really good way for you to sit back and reflect on your daily intake, the snacks you consume (which you may forget all about) and the drinks and types of fluids you consume throughout your day. Let’s start with what you have been eating today? And what did you eat yesterday? Try to keep this food diary for five days in order to pick up any possible trends or habits you may have but not even realise. Remember, it is only possible to create change once you are aware you may ‘need’ to change.

Five easy steps to creating healthy habits for 2011: • Start the day each morning with exercise (walking, stretching or running, it is all beneficial) • Eat a healthy nutritious breakfast to help start your day • Incorporate snacks between breakfast and lunch and lunch and dinner • (Snacks may include a home made veggie juice, hommus and sakkatas, a piece of fruit, handful of raw nuts) • Ensure your lunch and dinner contain 50% of vegetables or salad greens with your lean protein and complex carbohydrate (brown rice, sweet potato, corn). • Ensure to drink water throughout your day in order to keep your body well hydrated, helping to minimise over eating. Preferably do not drink with your meal, allowing your digestive system to work more efficiently. Next time we will look at exercise and the importance of getting your body moving. Remember, stay healthy, stay informed.

Tammy Farrell is a registered nurse, nutritionist and author of ‘The Real Man’s Toolbox – A DIY Health Manual for Men’. Tammy grew up in the Hunter Valley with two brothers in the local coal mines. In 2007, she started to give health talks in the Hunter, and that’s when she began compiling the book, helping hundreds of men answer questions about their bodies.

Honey Soy Chicken with rice Serves 4

METHOD:

This is a simple and easy recipe to whip up when you’re entertaining guests or simple having a family barbeque. Throw these tasty treats on the barbeque to be ready in minutes. You can also use this recipe with different meats such as pork or beef. Serve with boiled white or brown rice for the perfect meal.

Combine soy sauce, honey, lemon juice and garlic in a bowl and mix well. Place the chicken in a dish and pour the marinade over the top. Cover and marinade for 2 hours or overnight for the flavour to go through the chicken.

INGREDIENTS: 1/2 cup light soy sauce 1/3 cup honey 1 lemon, juiced 1 garlic clove, crushed 500g chicken breast fillets, cut into 2cm wide strips Skewer sticks 1 Cup of rice 2 Cups of water

Preheat the barbeque on high heat. Thread strips of chicken on skewers leaving 2cms at each end. Grill the chicken skewers on the barbeque, turning them 3 or 4 times until the chicken is cooked through. Place rice into a saucepan, add water. Bring the rice to the boil, reduce heat and cook for 5 minutes, or until most of the water has been absorbed. Turn off heat and cover for 10 minutes. Serve chicken skewers with rice and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Tip: Soak skewers overnight in water to prevent them burning on the barbeque.

Zest Eatery Open 4.00pm to 8.00pm daily 1300 622 222 themac.com.au COPPABELLA | DYSART | MIDDLEMOUNT | MORANBAH | NEBO

Page 23 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


motorsports 104th EDITION. 2011

Pommy prestige still worth a pound

repainted and the front suspension restored. Since then it has seen little use, laying dormant in garage storage for 10 years and only covering 58,000 km in the last 33 years. While now in good mechanical and structural order, the E-Type requires bodywork and interior renovation and is priced accordingly with a guiding range of $20,000-$24,000. The four-seater V12 Ferrari fitted with the optional 3-speed automatic transmission is a very correct car from a private collection and has been fully serviced with new belts, badges and a new exhaust fitted recently. The Ferrari’s body and paint have been restored, while the interior is still in original condition. The car is expected to sell within a guiding range of $36,000-40,000. Powered by the same 2.4 litre V6 engine fitted to the Ferrari 246GT, the Fiat Dino is expected to sell for significantly less between $26,000-$32,000 contrasting with 1977 Ferrari 400 Coupe V12....Chaps!

1967 Jaguar E-Type 2+2 Coupe...Darling!

FOR those of you who like a bit of toffee on your apple when it comes to car renovations - next month’s summer classics auction in Sydney could be the place for you. More than 26 iconic European touring cars are up for grabs at the Shannon’s auction. Most notable are a 1967 Jaguar E-Type 4.2 Coupe, a 1977 Ferrari 400 Coupe, and a 1972 left-hand-drive Fiat Dino Coupe. Antique cars have been enjoying growing popularity as an investment in recent years, but still the main stay of the market has been classic car tragics lured by the simplicity and style of cars gone-by. Interestingly, the price for a piece of European history isn’t nearly as much as you might think with Shannon’s suggesting prices could start as low as $20,000 for one of the flagship vehicles. But as always the devil is in the detail - and

1972 Fiat Dino Coupe.... Mamma Mia!

the car’s history is as important as its make. Jaguar enthusiasts have already showed considerable interest in the four-speed manual E-type, which has been owned by the one person since 1975. The original right-hand-drive car was

Serious 4WD Tyres!

delivered new in the UK market and was comprehensively overhauled in 1978 when the odometer clicked over the 160,000 kilometre mark. In the process, the car’s engine, gearbox and clutch were all rebuilt, the space frame

the Ferrari Dino’s $160,000-$220,000. Shannon’s National Auction Manager Christophe Boribon believes the Fiat Dino is a much under-rated classic that is destined to further appreciate in value. “It will have great appeal to enthusiasts wanting a distinctive and charismatic Italian sports car for classic rallies and club events at a fraction Ferrari cost,” he said. Other great Grand Tourers in Shannon’s Sydney Summer Auction include a concourse award-winning red left hand drive 1964 Corvette Stingray coupé, a recentlyrestored red 1968 Jaguar E-Type 4.2 manual coupé , a 1971 Jensen Interceptor Mk III coupe in great mechanical condition and a 5-speed manual 1987 BMW M5 sedan.

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Page 24 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011

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dwe


MONEY MATTERS 104th EDITION. 2011

Alpha slower - Old cars still the main target of theft but still selling DESPITE the recent wet weather, and the slowed development of the Galilee Basin, real estate is continuing to sell at Alpha in central western Queensland. The small village of Alpha, west of Emerald, is at the epicentre of the massive new Galilee coal mining province scheduled to start production in the next five years. While Alpha currently has a population of less than 500, there have been estimates that the town could increase in size to more than 3000 if all the proposed coal developments take place. Belyando Livestock & Property’s Ed Wood says while things are bubbling along in the town, real estate activity tends to mirror progress in the mining developments. “Interest in real estate has been fairly steady from the basis that we have had a broken program with the weather, and Christmas,” he said. “A lot of the real estate activity is a direct response to mining development activity.” “Every time there has been an agreement struck to develop rail, or develop the mine, every time something is announced we get more interest and activity.” “The latest development has been the appointment of contractors to build a road to Hancock’s test pit, which is an important step.” “But the big thing we are now waiting on is the EIS process.” Despite this, a number of important real estate sales have taken place. The Alpha Caravan Park, which can house around 50 people, has recently been sold to a temporary accommodation provider from the Bowen Basin. A number of contracts on houses also settled in the town over the Christmas period, and some nearby rural land was bought by miners looking for lifestyle blocks.

“We had some property settle over Christmas, but what we have found is that due diligence is taking a little longer because we are dealing with rezoning.”

“We had some property settle over Christmas, but what we have found is that due diligence is taking a little longer because we are dealing with rezoning.” “We have a developer at the moment who has some land tied up under a contract and is looking to rezone the land for redevelopment.” “But the government needs to see demand for the new land use being proposed before they will give approval for rezoning.” “At the moment the developer is seeking expressions of interest from people or businesses who might be looking for commercial, residential or industrial land at Alpha.” “There is currently no industrial land in Alpha, so if anyone is interested - they can contact me, and I will put them in contact with the developer.” Last year, council sold 10 blocks of land and plans are in place to sell a further 20 blocks possibly as early as April.

WHILE the total number of stolen vehicles in Australia is falling, old cars are still the main target according to the National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council. Vehicle theft is broken down into two categories: those that are stolen for short term use (generally recovered) and those that are stolen for profit (generally not recovered). Across Australia, short term passenger/ light commercial (PLC) thefts fell to just under 7800 in the last three months of 2010, which is nearly 1800 vehicles less than the same period in 2009. Motorcycle thefts dropped by 147 from the previous quarter, and were also down marginally from the previous 12-month period. It was a similar story for PLC’s that were stolen for profit - 3038 vehicles were stolen and not recovered, a five per cent drop on the previous quarter. Almost two-thirds of the vehicles that were not recovered were built before 2000, indicating that older cars continue to be highly sought after. Motorcycle theft for profit continues

to fluctuate, with numbers dropping by 39 when compared to the previous quarter but increasing overall by 19 thefts for the rolling 12-month period. The large majority of motorcycles stolen remain lost, and accounted for a quarter of all profit-motivated theft.

Did you know?

• Close to two thirds of PLCs stolen in Australia during the September quarter were 11 years and older. • Over half of all profit-motivated theft for the quarter occurred in NSW • The Holden Commodore VT was car of choice for profit-motivated thieves in both the quarter and during the past 12 months • Large passenger vehicles comprise 22 per cent of registrations but made up 29 per cent of vehicles stolen not recovered • Friday and Saturday night between 4pm and midnight was the most popular time for profit-motivated theft

Keynote speaker and company founder, Peter Spencer, (featured in Mr Millionaire and Property Millionaire) with fellow property specialist Mark Browning from QLD Property Advice will share a road map of proven principles and teach you how to build a multiproperty portfolio for as little as $30 a week.

Complimentary Workshop ! Register online now at www.qldpropertyadvice.com.au      

First 20 bookings will receive a complimentary book All you need to know about property investing in 80 minutes Educational and interactive property workshop Seats are limited Moranbah Workers Club - 17th February 2011 – 7pm rego Complimentary drink on arrival

Mark Browning E: mark@qldpropertyadvice.com.au M: 0406 318 973 A: 28 Mein St Hendra QLD 4011

  

www.qldpropertyadvice.com.au

Page 25 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


MONEY MATTERS 104th EDITION. 2011

Real estate booming in soggy towns

WHILE much of central Queensland has been declared a disaster zone by the Premier, the real estate sector says its outlook is anything but disastrous in the wake of the floods. According to the Real Estate Industry of Queensland (REIQ), business is booming in both the Gladstone and Rockhampton regions. REIQ Gladstone representative Mark Spearing said while the region might have

been declared a disaster zone, the city itself survived the flood. He said the seemingly flood-proof nature of the city coupled with Santos’ recent decision to go ahead with its LNG facility has put Gladstone on the map even more for investors. “Gladstone’s enquiry levels are extremely strong, and given our position and history would say we just don’t flood, where other

locations in investors sights may have been downgraded some what [because of flooding],” Mr Spearing said. “We are seeing a general slow in business activity across all sectors, Brisbane in particular, and banks are having a lot of trouble issuing mortgages and other documents at the moment.” But he said that is not the case in Gladstone.

“People are buying and they are really starting to come back in numbers but it’s only been in this last [fortnight] though.” “Many people were delayed getting back to normality given Christmas and the floods where essentially everything ground to a halt for the best part of a month,” Mr Spearing said. Rockhampton region’s REIQ representative, Noel Livingston, said the cut roads and isolation slowed business down, but the market has picked up again. “There has been substantial enquiry in the rental market, it’s traditionally the strongest time of year for the rentals and that was interesting that it wasn’t affected,” Mr Livingston said. “We started to notice enquiry since they said the road was opening and we have been busy ever since.” Mr Livingston was in the real estate game during the 1991 floods and he said the 18 months following that flood were some of the busiest times he has had. He said he was hoping history would repeat. “Whether that converts to anything now I don’t know, but after this flooding with repair work - there will be an enormous demand for workers and there will be a lot more jobs and that will have an impact on everything.” “That’s really important to us in real estate and to every industry,” Mr Livingston said.

WHAT YOU CAN LEARN FROM A

WINO

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Delivered direct to your inbox every Wednesday To register go to www.shiftminer.com and follow the link Page 26 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


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Phone 0402 213 685 3 BED 2 BATH 2 CAR

LAND NOW SELLING FROM $159,900†

Relaxed lifestyle just 15 minutes from Mackay Lots available from 712m2 to 1168m2 Surrounding amenities include primary schools, childcare, parks, shops and health services Convenient access to many of the major mining towns

AY

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KELLYS ROAD

Kelly’s Road, Walkerston (off Peak Downs Highway)

Average land price $187,242. House and Land sold separately. Price is subject to availability, site and soil test, council and covenant requirements, and subject to change without notice. Images are indicative only. All descriptions have been prepared in good faith and with due care however may be subject to change without notice at any time. Purchasers should inform and assure themselves by inspection, independent advice or as otherwise necessary prior to purchase. ®Registered Trademark. QBSA Lic. No. 41712. ©AVJennings Properties Limited. ABN 50 004 601 503.

Call Terry Ph. 07 4947 6269 AIRLIE BEACH Mob. 0408 760 994 E: abawre@bigpond.com AND WHITSUNDAY REAL ESTATE ® www.realestatewhitsundays.com.au ✆ 1300 REAL ESTATE (Whitsundays) COMMERCIAL INVESTMENT IN MINING TOWN

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Page 27 - Shift Miner Magazine, 31st January 2011


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