Posted: 28 April, 2015

Andrew Chan Marries Ahead Of Execution

Chan making the most of his final hours

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 27:  Amnesty international and Sydney Bali Nine activists hold a vigil in front of a flower wall that says #keephopealive' in a last ditch effort to sway the Indonesian Government to halt proceedings to execute Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran on April 27, 2015 in Sydney, Australia.  Chan is one of the nine Australians accused by Indonesian Police of drug trafficking on April 17, 2005.  (Photo by Cole Bennetts/Getty Images)Source: Getty Images 

In a bitter sweet celebration, Andrew Chan has married his fiancée less than 48 hours before he is believed to be executed with Myuran Sukumaran.

Chan exchanged vows with his bride Febyanti Herewila in a small ceremony witnessed by close friends and family yesterday on Nusakambangan Island.

Chan’s wedding was announced by his older brother Michael, “It is a tough time, but it is a happy time at the same time.”

“Andrew had a special day today, Feby and Andrew have had a bit of a celebration this evening and it was celebrated with family and close friends,” he said.

“It was an enjoyable moment; they’re married.”

CILACAP, CENTRAL JAVA, INDONESIA - APRIL 27: Michael Chan, a brother of Australian death row prisoner Andrew Chan, speaks to journalists at Wijaya Pura port after visiting his brother at Nusakambangan prison ahead of the executions of the Bali 9 on April 27, 2015 in Cilacap, Central Java, Indonesia. Condemned Bali Nine duo Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have been given 72 hours execution notice. The execution could be held as soon as Tuesday midnight on Nusukamban Island where they have been held, awaiting there fate since March 4th, 2015. Chan and Sukumaran were both sentenced to death after being found guilty of attempting to smuggle 8.3kg of heroin valued at around $4 million from Indonesia to Australia along with 7 other accomplices. (Photo by Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images)Michael Chan, a brother of Australian death row prisoner Andrew Chan, speaks to journalists. Source: Getty Images 

Unless President Joko Widodo has a change of heart, Chan will face the firing squad just after the stroke of midnight on Wednesday, April 29 (3am AEST) alongside Myuran Sukumaran.

Sukumaran has spent his final hours painting harrowing self-portraits.

Salvation Army minister David Soper officiated the marriage and will be Chan’s spiritual adviser as he prepares for his death.

Chan and his new bride posed and laughed for photos on Chan’s second-last day alive after the couple was required to get permission from prison authorities in order to marry in the jail.

Andrew Chan's new wife, Febyanti Herewila. Source: Twitter

Chan and Feby were engaged in February in Bali’s Kerobokan prison; shortly after Chan learned his clemency had been rejected and he was due to die.

Feby assured the love for Chan was not out of any kind of pity.

“Andrew is one of the strongest, kindest people I have ever met. I love him for who he is. And I see what he does for other people and that makes me love him more,” Feby said.

Overnight, Indonesia’s Attorney-General HM Prasetyo seemed to show a lack of compassion for the plight of Chan.

Both Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran to be executed in less than 24 hours. Source: Supplied

He said although he agreed to fulfil Chan’s request to wed, he thought it was a joke.

“There was a request from Andrew Chan; I thought it as a joke. He has been isolated, so I think it was a joke but we will fulfil it,” he said.

Meanwhile, Australia has shown immense support during the men’s final hours.

Candlelight vigils have been held in Sydney and across the country for the death row inmates.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 27:  Supporters taking part of an Amnesty international vigil for the Bali 9 duo, Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran in a last ditch effort to sway the Indonesian Government to halt the planned executions of the two on April 27, 2015 in Sydney, Australia.  Chan is one of the nine Australians accused by Indonesian Police of drug trafficking on April 17, 2005.  (Photo by Cole Bennetts/Getty Images)Supporters taking part of an Amnesty international vigil. Source: Getty Images

Candles were lit and paintings of the men carried by about 50 supporters outside the Indonesian consulate in Sydney last night, while around 200 others gathered at Sydney’s Blues Point Reserve on the Harbour.

About 10,000 flowers were used to spell out “Keep Hope Alive”, at the event organised by Amnesty International.

Flower wall that reads "#KeepHopeAlive". Source: Getty Images

Many saying they came to show opposition to the death penalty and to add their voices to the plea for the men to be allowed to live.

“I’ll be destroyed as a person if this goes ahead,” Sukumaran’s friend Kavita Brishnan told AAP.

“These two individuals have shown to have reformed and justice is about giving people a chance rather than just killing them,” Linda Lindquist from Shellharbour said.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 27:  A woman places a tribute on a flower wall that reads #keephopealive' as part of an Amnesty international vigil for the Bali 9 duo, Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran in a last ditch effort to sway the Indonesian Government to halt the planned executions of the two on April 27, 2015 in Sydney, Australia.  Chan is one of the nine Australians accused by Indonesian Police of drug trafficking on April 17, 2005.  (Photo by Cole Bennetts/Getty Images) A woman places a tribute on a flower wall. Source: Getty Images 

Close family and friends of Chan and Sukumaran will say their final goodbyes this afternoon at 2pm (5pm AEST).

The men’s lawyers are still fighting with a constitutional court challenge into their clemency rejection, which is now listed to be heard, but not until May 12. 

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Tags: Andrew Chan; Myuran Sukumaran, Bali Nine, Execution

Posted: 28 April, 2015

Covers Are Off The Final Camry

Toyota will make them until the end of 2017

The old model Toyota Camry.

Toyota has taken the covers off it's last model to be built at its Altona manufacturing plant today, the new-look Camry.

Along with the facelift Aurion, the new-look Camry and Camry Hybrid will be in production until the company stops manufacturing at the end of 2017.

Having built more than 3.2 million Toyota vehicles locally since 1963, this marks the end of an era in the Australian automotive industry.

The total investment for the new-look Camry is $108 million, which includes $23.6 million from the Federal Government and a contribution from the Victorian Government. The plant expects to build approximately 90,000 vehicles this year, which equates to around 420 units per day.

Approximately 70 per cent of these cars will be exported primarily to the Middle East, as well as New Zealand, South Pacific Islands and for the first time, Thailand.
The new Camry will go on sale next month.

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Tags: toyota, camry, altona

Posted: 27 April, 2015

Bali Nine Pair Have Been Executed

Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran paid the ultimate price for drug smuggling


Bali 9 ringleaders Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have been shot. Source: Getty Images

Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have been executed on Nusakambangan Island in Java, just before 12:30 am local time (3:30 Wed AEST) after a decade since their arrest. 

The chilling executions of eight convicts, including the two Australians, have been carried out- with the Jakarta Post quoting an Attorney General’s Office official that eight of the nine prisoners on death row have been shot dead by the firing squad, “we’ve carried out the executions.”

It was the moment the men's friends and family had agonised over, since the ringleaders of the notorious ‘Bali 9’ convicted smuggling group had been held in Bali’s Kerobokan prison since 2005 and sentenced to death in 2006 for attempting to smuggle eight kilograms of heroin out of the country. 

An Indonesian lawyer who acted for Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran has just tweeted:

Meanwhile Deborah Clay from TripleM speaks with the men's Australian lawyer Peter Morrissey after they were executed by an Indonesian firing squad:

"When it comes along it hits very hard." 

"They were very full of life so it's a sad thing to happen and it will stay sad for a long time."

"Each of them has died well. It's amazing to see how people under extreme pressure like that can have their better nature come forward." 

Mary Jane Fiesta Veloso of the Philippines was spared a last-minute reprieve. The family of Mary has been told she is still alive:

Michael Chan, brother of Andrew, has posted this tribute on Twitter:

The Sydney men were marched from their isolated cells in Batu prison, given white clothing to symbolise the afterlife and were led behind the prison to a new purpose-built firing range. 

They had a choice to be blindfolded with a piece of fabric before facing the firing squad who will be lined anywhere from five to ten meters in front of them. 

Sukumaran refused to wear a blindfold so he could look his executioners in the eye with dignity. 

The death row inmates chose whether to stand, sit or kneel before a cross was placed over their hearts acting as a target for the 12 riflemen. 

In previous executions, people were strapped to a post. But in the January executions, a new method was devised- of being strapped to a wooden plank. 

Crosses for condemned drug convicts (from L-R) Australians Andrew Chan (L) and Myuran Sukumaran (C), and  Nigerian Okwudili Oyatanze are seen following their completion at a church in Cilacap on April 28, 2015, ahead of convicts imminent execution at the Nusakambangan maximum security prison island. Indonesia made final preparations April 28 to execute eight foreigners by firing squad, as family members wailed in grief during last visits to their loved ones and ambulances carrying white coffins arrived at the drug convicts' prison. AFP PHOTO / AZKA        (Photo credit should read AZKA/AFP/Getty Images)Wooden posts prepared ahead of the executions. Source: Getty Images

The commander loaded each rifle with one round. Only three of the rounds were live. 

Before being killed, the men were given a final chance to calm down for a maximum of three minutes with a spiritual advisor before the riflemen were ordered to shoot at the heart.  

After an initial denial of the rights for Chan and Sukumaran to have a religious advisor of their choosing, authorities had agreed that two Australian ministers would be allowed to accompany the men in their final hours.  

They did not witness the execution by the firing squad, two Indonesian pastors were appointed to that role. 

The commander swished the blade down as a sign for the 12 shooters to begin to fire.  

If a doctor determines a prisoner has survived, an officer will fire a single shot to the head with a handgun. 

CILACAP, CENTRAL JAVA, INDONESIA - APRIL 28: A coffin is seen inside a ambulence as arrive at Wijaya Pura port during for transfer to Nusakambangan prison ahead of the executions of the Bali 9 on April 28, 2015 in Cilacap, Central Java, Indonesia. Condemned Bali Nine duo Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have been given 72 hours execution notice. The execution could be held as soon as Tuesday midnight on Nusukamban Island where they have been held, awaiting there fate since March 4th, 2015. Chan and Sukumaran were both sentenced to death after being found guilty of attempting to smuggle 8.3kg of heroin valued at around $4 million from Indonesia to Australia along with 7 other accomplices. (Photo by Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images)A coffin ordered for one of the bodies. Source: Getty Images

CILACAP, CENTRAL JAVA, INDONESIA - APRIL 28: Ambulence are arrive at Wijaya Pura port as prepare for transfer to Nusakambangan prison ahead of the executions of the Bali 9 on April 28, 2015 in Cilacap, Central Java, Indonesia. Condemned Bali Nine duo Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have been given 72 hours execution notice. The execution could be held as soon as Tuesday midnight on Nusukamban Island where they have been held, awaiting there fate since March 4th, 2015. Chan and Sukumaran were both sentenced to death after being found guilty of attempting to smuggle 8.3kg of heroin valued at around $4 million from Indonesia to Australia along with 7 other accomplices. (Photo by Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images)Ambulances will carry the coffins through to Jakarta, to later retun to Australia. Source: Getty Images 

Chan and Sukumaran have paid the ultimate price for attempting to smuggle heroin into Australia, an issue that has caused heated debate across the world. 

The executions went ahead despite heavy international pressure on Indonesia and President Joko Widodo to grant clemency. 

President Joko Widodo said there would be "no amnesty for drug dealers." 

After confirmation of the executions earlier in the night, Indonesia’s Attorney General HM Prasetyo said in a statement, That’s what our laws decided. We say, our courts are open, fair and nothing is closed.”

“We have explained that we’re not against them [personally]. What we fight is the serious crime of drugs.”

“We ask for prayers and support from everyone so that this unpleasant duty can be finished well, without any disturbances.”

Attorney-General HM Prasetyo will make a media statement in Cilacap at 5:30am (8:30 AEST))

The families of the Bali Nine pair said their emotional final goodbyes yesterday afternoon, struggling to get through the frenzy of intense media scrutiny. 

CILACAP, CENTRAL JAVA, INDONESIA - APRIL 28: Brintha Sukumaran (C), a sister of Australian death row prisoner Myuran Sukumarans screams as she arrives at Wijaya Pura port to visit her brother at Nusakambangan prison ahead of the executions of the Bali 9 on April 28, 2015 in Cilacap, Central Java, Indonesia. Condemned Bali Nine duo Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran have been given 72 hours execution notice. The execution could be held as soon as Tuesday midnight on Nusukamban Island where they have been held, awaiting there fate since March 4th, 2015. Chan and Sukumaran were both sentenced to death after being found guilty of attempting to smuggle 8.3kg of heroin valued at around $4 million from Indonesia to Australia along with 7 other accomplices. (Photo by Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images)Brintha Sukumaran, a sister of Australian death row prisoner Myuran Sukumaran. Source: Getty Images

Here's a look back at what lead the duo down this dangerous drug smuggling path. 

Who were these two men? 

Andrew Chan

Andrew Chan was born in 1984 and grew up in Enfield, Sydney’s southwest, born to Chinese migrants before he dabbled in drugs and later became one of the ringleaders behind a plan to smuggle heroin from Indonesia to Australia.

Until dropping out in Year 10, he attended Homebush Boys High School where Myuran Sukumaran also went, but the pair didn’t meet until 2002 through a mutual friend.

At the time of his arrest, Chan was working at catering company Eurest and admitted in an interview he didn’t think he was going anywhere in life.

It was while working at Eurest Chan met Renae Lawrence, Martin Stephens and Matthew Norman, members of the infamous Bali Nine. 

Lawrence reportedly claimed Chan forced her to become a drug mule and threatened her and her family and if she refused.

Chan, an atheist before his 2005 arrest, has since turned to Christianity to help him cope in jail.

After taking a course in theology, Chan ran the English language church service at Bali’s Kerobokan jail. 

On Monday afternoon he married girlfriend Febyanti Herewila in Besi prison.

He proposed to Febyanti ‘Feby’ after Indonesian President Joko Widodo rejected his plea for clemency in February. 

Myuran Sukumaran

Myuran Sukumaran was born in London in 1981, his Sri Lankan family moved to Australia in 1985.

He grew up in Auburn, Sydney’s west, and was four grades above Chan at Homebush Boys High School.

Sukumaran started but dropped out of uni, took a job at a mailroom, and later the passport office in Sydney.

He, like Chan felt he wasn’t doing much with his life, and was introduced to partying and drugs.

Soon, the temptation of making some quick cash was too good to refuse.

At the time of his arrest on his 24th birthday, Indonesian police thought Sukumaran was Chan’s bodyguard as they were always together.

During his time in prison, Sukumaran became an avid painter and commenced a fine arts degree via correspondence with Curtin University.

The latest in a series of death row paintings, a human heart by Myuran Sukumaran has been signed by all eight executed prisoners and inscribed "Satu hati satu rasa didalam cinta - (one heart, one feeling in love)". Source: Getty Images

Both men were widely recognised for turning their lives around and for their positive contribution to the lives of fellow inmates at Kerobokan Prison.

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Tags: Bali Nine, Andrew Chan, Myuran Sukumaran, Execution

Posted: 27 April, 2015

It's Sneezin' Season!

And Our Chemists Are About To Get Super Busy

                                                                                                                            Source: Getty

Noticed the topics of conversation at work turning into chats about that stuffy nose? Tickly throat? Itchy eyes?

Once again we're heading into what we're calling Sneezin' Season - the peak time of the year for influenza and the common cold.

Its estimated adults will get around 2-3 colds per year, while kids sniffle their way through a whopping 6-12.

Stats gathered by our research team at Southern Cross Austereo have found 77% of people will head to the chemist at least once a month. 48% of us will self diagnose before heading in, and we're not immune to an impulse buy either: 42% will leave with more products than intended.*

The wise folk at NPR Medicine Wise say it's important not to take antibiotics for the sake of it. Here's what they suggest you do to relieve symptoms of a common cold:

  • Rest
  • Drink plenty of water and non alcoholic drinks to avoid dehydration
  • Avoid exposure to cigarette smoke
  • Inhale steam to help relieve a blocked nose. Supervise your child while they breathe in steam from a hot bath or shower in a closed room.
  • Gargle with warm salty water.
  • Suck on an ice cube or a throat lozenge.
  • Drink hot water with honey and lemon.

If you need to step it up medicine wise, the NPR suggests

  • Paracetamol & ibuprofen for relieving pain and fever.
  • Decongestants & saline nasal spreays or drops for relieving a blocked nose.
  • Combination 'cough and cold' or 'cold and flu' medicines
  • Complementary medicines (e.g. vitamin C, zinc, echinacea).

Can someone please pass the tissues?!

* Source: Southern Cross Austereo Research. Pharmacy Study. Oct 2014. N=1669

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Tags: cold, flu, sneezing, chemist

Posted: 27 April, 2015

Hopes High for Anzac Future

Dawn service organisers expect another big crowd next year at Anzac Cove

An estimated 6,000 people came all over the world to attend this years Dawn Service at Gallipoli and honour the fallen.

 

Organisers behind the successful Anzac Day dawn service at Gallipoli are expecting almost as many people to pack the battlefield site for next year's ceremony.

A day after 10,500 people crowded into the Anzac Commemorative Site on Gallipoli's North Beach, Gallipoli dawn service, Australian services director Tim Evans said between 8000 and 10,000 people were expected for the 2016 service.

It is unlikely a ballot system will be used, however, meaning places will be available on a first-in basis.

Source: AAP. Photo: Getty Images

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Tags: Anzac, Gallipoli, dawn service

Posted: 27 April, 2015

Aussie Teen Safe

Kathmandu shifts three metres in 30 seconds

Incredible Drone Footage Over Kathmandu, Nepal

Nepal earthquake: Drone shows incredible footage of aftermath in Kathmandu

Warning: Video contains language that may offend some viewers

Hit by Avalanche in Everest Basecamp 25.04.2015 Video: Jost Kobusch

Powerful aftershocks continue to rock Nepal, after the worst earthquake to hit the region in more than 80 years.

The 7.8 magnitude quake struck an area of central Nepal between Kathmandu and the city of Pokhara early on Saturday.

According to a world-renowned expert on Himalayan earthquakes, University of Colorado geologist Roger Bilham said, "a massive block of the Earth's crust, roughly 75 miles long (120km) and 37 miles (60km) wide, lurched 10 feet (3m) to the south over the course of 30 seconds."  

Just when residents and tourists thought the worst was over, a powerful 6.7 magnitude aftershock was felt on Sunday in Nepal, India and Bangladesh.

BHAKTAPUR, NEPAL - APRIL 26:  A relative of one of the victims of the earthquake that hit Nepal yesterday cries on April 26, 2015 in Bhaktapur, Nepal. A major 7.8 earthquake hit Kathmandu mid-day on Saturday, and was followed by multiple aftershocks that triggered avalanches on Mt. Everest that buried mountain climbers in their base camps. Many houses, buildings and temples in the capital were destroyed during the earthquake, leaving thousands dead or trapped under the debris as emergency rescue workers attempt to clear debris and find survivors.  (Photo by Omar Havana/Getty Images)A relative of one of the victims of the earthquake that hit Nepal on Saturday. Source: Getty Images/ Omar Havana

Terrifying footage has emerged of the moment the quake-triggered avalanche hit Everest base camp, sending panicked climbers running for their lives (above). An Australian climber is reportedly one of at least 19 people killed at the base camp. 

A Sherpa from Dreamers’ Destination Treks and Expeditions claims to have lost four team members, two locals, an Australian and one from China.

TOPSHOTSPeople clear rubble in Kathmandus Durbar Square, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that was severely damaged by an earthquake on April 25, 2015. A massive 7.8 magnitude earthquake killed hundreds of people April 25 as it ripped through large parts of Nepal, toppling office blocks and towers in Kathmandu and triggering a deadly avalanche that hit Everest base camp. AFP PHOTO / PRAKASH MATHEMAEmergency workers and bystanders clear debris while searching for survivors under a collapsed temple. Source: Getty Images/ Omar Havana

The death toll in Nepal has now reportedly surpassed 2500 people, but that number is expected to rise as emergency services expand their efforts. The dead included 2352 in Nepal, 60 in India and reportedly 17 in the Tibet region. A further 6,239 people are believed to have been badly injured. 

Fortunately, more than 800 Australian's have checked in with DFAT and are confirmed safe, but at least 60 Australians are still unaccounted for. 

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop says authorities have taken calls from more than 1250 families and friends of missing Australians in Nepal and are trying to get in touch with all of them.

Residents look at a crack in the pavement. Source: Getty Images/ Omar Havana 

It comes after Prime Minister Tony Abbott reassured family members of missing Australians that they “should not assume the worst.”

Australian actor Hugh Sheridan has appealed for help to find his eighteen year old brother Zachery.

He has received no word from him yet, who was on Mount Everest when the earthquake hit. 

Rescue missions and aid have started arriving to help cope with the aftermath, digging victims out from under the rubble of collapsed buildings.

Australia has already committed $5 million in aid to help the recovery effort, 

With search and rescue efforts far from over, it was unclear how high the death toll will climb.

Ms Bishop says damage to infrastructure has made communication difficult but also urges families to try to contact their loved ones directly.

If you are concerned for a relative or friend in Nepal, call the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade 24-hour consular emergency line on 1300 555 135 within Australia or +61 2 6261 3305 from outside.

The red cross has set up a website of those missing in Nepal.

Local people help with rescue work at the site of a building that collapsed after an earthquake in Kathmandu. Source: Getty Images/ Omar Havana 

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Tags: Nepal, Earthquake, Kathmandu, Natural Disaster

Posted: 26 April, 2015

Canberra Commits $5m To Nepal Aid

Canberra Commits $5m To Nepal Aid

What we know so far about the Australians in Nepal:

 -there are 549 Aussies registered with Smart Traveller, and authorities have been able to confirm the safety of about 200.

-so far there are no reports of any Australians amongst those confirmed dead, as the toll nears 2000.

-$5 million has been committed by the Federal Government to help the recovery effort.

-18 year old Queenslander Alyssa Azar was attempting to become the youngest Australian to climb Mount Everest. She has been located safe.

-the 20 year old brother of Hugh Sheridan (from Packed To The Rafters) is currently on Mount Everest, and has not been accounted for.

Australians concerned for family and friends are asked to try to contact them directly before calling DFAT's 24-hour consular emergency centre on 1300 555 135.

The Abbott Govermnet has committed $5 million in assistance following the deadly earthquake in Nepal.

An Australian Crisis Response Team will travel to Nepal as soon as possible to assist in establishing the welfare of the Australians still unaccounted for after Saturday's 7.8 magnitude earthquake.

Worried relatives have inundated social media with pleas for help and information. Twitter and Facebook pages are showing images of Australians in Nepal while many families have reported dozens of loved ones missing on The Red Cross's Family Links website.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has opened its emergency call unit and updated travel advice for Nepal, warning of disruptions to communication, transport and tourist infrastructure in the country.

Earlier:

Nepal's Home Ministry says the death toll from the devastating earthquake has reached 1805. The latest toll puts the overall regional fatalities at 1,865.

Almost 5,000 people have reported injuries as well, while more than a dozen Australians are still missing.

Aid agencies including Oxfam are already sending teams to Nepal to help in the aftermath of the country's deadliest earthquake in more than 80 years.

Oxfam Australia chief executive Helen Szoke says "People are gathered in their thousands in open spaces and are scared, as there were several aftershocks. Oxfam staff in Nepal, along with thousands of others, are sleeping outside tonight in football fields and other open spaces because they are the safest place to be."

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade is yet to release a statement about any Australians who might have been caught up in the disaster. The federal opposition has called on the Abbott government to offer every assistance towards the recovery effort.

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Tags: Nepal, Earthquake, Hugh Sheridan, Alyssa Azar

Posted: 26 April, 2015

As little as 72 hours left to live for Bali Nine duo

Bali Nine duo Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan will face the firing squad as early as Tuesday, unless Indonesia's president has a last-minute change of heart.

United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon has joined calls to spare the lives of ten death row prisoners, including Chan and Sukumaran.

Sukumaran's sister Brintha has released a brief youtube video, clutching a photo of her big brother  and pleading for mercy.

Photo: Getty Images

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Posted: 24 April, 2015

Should Reversing Cameras Be Compulsory?

Reversing cameras for cars are in focus, in the wake of last week's tragic accident at Brookside shopping centre, where an elderly man accidentally reversed over his wife.  She'd hopped out of the car to help direct his park, when he lost sight of her.

Also with stats showing one child a week is run over in driveways around Australia, it raises questions about whether reversing cameras should be compulsory.

The USA has passed laws meaning all new cars will need reversing cameras by 2018.

But the RACQ's Steve Spalding says they're not a magic solution.

"They will help, but they won't fix the problem... Every vehicle will have different shapes, different blind spots, and every driver will have a different sitting position," he says.

He's also poured cold water on the idea that big 4WDs and SUVs are the worst offenders for blind spots.

"Some smaller cars and certainly some sedans have some quite large blind spots, not just at the rear but the front pillars as well.  And of course with every driver being a different shape and size and having their seat adjusted differently, it's most important that drivers are very familiar with blind spots on their own vehicle," he says.

Steve says a child can be standing very close to a car but still be outside of a camera's view, so no amount of technology replaces caution and careful checking.

"We're seeing electronic stability, lane departure warnings, fatigue warnings..I think it's important drivers do recognise they are technologies that are there to assist the driver, but not to replace the driver's primary responsibility of keeping that car in control."

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Tags: reversing camera, car, driving, safety

Posted: 23 April, 2015

Your Guide To ANZAC Day In Brisbane

Dawn Services, Parades, retail trading hours and more

Image Credit: Getty

Huge crowds are expected at ANZAC services around Brisbane this weekend, as we mark 100 years since the Gallipoli Landings. Up to 40 000 people are expected at the Dawn Service in the CBD alone.  Check out these links to help you plan where and how you'll remember our diggers. 

Triple M's also got your ANZAC Day covered- we'll be bringing you the Dawn Service from Canberra LIVE at 5:30am, followed by Mick Molly's "Soldier On" special at 6am.

Then from 11am we are LIVE from Gallipoli to commemorate ANZAC day with your hosts Eddie McGuire, Luke Darcy and Mick Molloy.

ANZAC Day

Brisbane City Dawn Service- ANZAC Square, Adelaide Street. Starts at 4:28am. Best to get there before 4am to get a good vantage point.

Brisbane City ANZAC Parade9:30am-1pm.  Best vantage points are along Adelaide Street.

The Parade will include flypasts by two F/A-18F Super Hornets- at 10am and 11am. They will travel 500ft above built up areas.

Are you in the parade? There's been some confusion about where to form up, sort it out here

Other services near youcheck what services will be held at your local RSL Sub-Branch

Public Transport to the CBD will run on a Public Holiday timetable but there are extra services running to and from ANZAC Day events.

Upstream CityCat services will depart Northshore Hamilton terminal at 3am and downstream CityCat services will depart UQ St Lucia terminal at 3am.

A cross-river CityFerry service will run between Thornton Street and Eagle Street Pier terminals every 10 minutes, commencing at Thornton Street terminal 3am. 

Free public transport is available for:

  • Veterans wearing their uniform or service medals
  • Family members marching on behalf of veterans, wearing service medals
  • Accompanying spouses and children in uniform from the Girls’ Brigade, Boys’ Brigade, Girl Guides, Scouts and military cadets who are participating in ANZAC Day ceremonies

There are also some special arrangements for ANZAC Day  Parking in the CBD.

Plan your trip on ANZAC Day and check out road closures in the CBD area.

The Dawn Service, ANZAC Day Parade and ANZAC Day Gallipoli Service will all be broadcast live on big screens in King George Square, and Queen Street Mall.

ANZAC Celebration Concert at Southbank Piazza- exhibits start from 12 midday, concert headlined by Troy Cassar-Daley from 3pm.

Retail trading hours

Shops will be closed on ANZAC day but there are some exemptions.  Smaller independent stores can open after 1pm, while a few grocery stores may open all day.  Places like cinemas can open after 1:30.  Here's the rundown on who can and can't trade on ANZAC Day.

Broncos and Reds Games- ANZAC weekend

The Broncos host Parramatta at Suncorp at 8pm Saturday night- there'll be a Last Post tribute before the game. 

While Reds fans are urged to get to Sunday's match against the Hurricanes early- the game starts at 4:05pm but fans should be seated by 3:30 for the Ode, a moment's silence, a poem and the two national anthems.  There'll also be a parade down Caxton Street at 3:00pm, andtanks in each corner of the stadium firing (blank) rounds at each try.

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Tags: Anzac Day, Dawn Service, ANZAC Day Parade, Brisbane

Posted: 23 April, 2015

Our Emoji Use Analysed...

Turns out Aussies are into booze, pills, junk food and holidays.

When it comes to emoji use, Aussies are all about booze, pills, junk food and holidays.

A Swiftkey report’s looked at more than a billion bits of text data from 16  different countries, and found we’re twice as likely to use the ‘beer jug’ emoji, 70 per cent more likely to use the pill emoji, while we use holiday symbols 60 per cent more than average and junk food twice the average.

The French are all about the love hearts – in fact it outranks the perennially popular smiley face.

Canadians are a fan of the poop symbol, while Russians are three times more likely to use romantically themed icons.

As for Malaysians, they use the sleepy emoji twice as much as the average person...

And Americans? They're a mixed bag... Most likely to use the most 'random' of symbols, including the skulls, birthday cake, fire, '100', chicken drumstick and pizza. 

Topping the list overall, though, is the trusty smiley faces:

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Tags: emojis, beer, booze, drugs, pill, holidays, junk food, anaysis, research

Posted: 23 April, 2015

Condom Recall from Groupon

Well this is awkward.

People who bought Durex Condoms via Groupon between March 12 and April 10 are being told they're eligible for a refund.

Why? A couple of reasons.

1. They have holes in them, which kind of goes against the idea of condoms protecting you from sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy.

2. They're counterfeit Durex condoms.

Groupon Australia says they know which customers bought the cut price condoms, and will be contacting them to offer a full refund.

 

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Tags: condom, recall, sex