Central Leader : April 29th 2011
www.centralleader.co.nz Friday, April 29, 2011 westfield.co.nz/stlukes FREE COFFEE FOR YOU. FREE FUN FOR UNDER 5's. First Wednesday of every month, 10.30am in the Food Court. Visit westfield.co.nz/stlukes for more details. WES/6x7/1253 It's time to answer Coastguard's MayDay appeal Flying high: Coastguard tactical co-ordinator Sally Higgs works from the air to help find people who need to be rescued. Photo: FIONA GOODALL By SCOTT MORGAN CONTINUED Page 3 Saving lives is all in a day's work for Coastguard tactical co-ordinator Sally Higgs. The role involves flying in a fixed- wing Cessna 182 from Ardmore and working with other volunteers to spot vessels that need help getting back to shore. Operators at the organisation's Mechanics Bay base send boats out to help those stranded. Ms Higgs says it's a fantastic feel- ing when a successful rescue comes off and people get home safely to their families. You see someone who needs help and you're a key person in saving their life. That's pretty cool.'' Coastguard is holding a MayDay -- Train One, Save Many appeal from Sunday until May 15. A lot of people don't realise Coastguard is a charity and survives on donations from the com- munity,'' Ms Higgs says. The Papakura resident says it's not unusual for boaties to become confused about their exact location. That makes spotting them from the air a hugely valuable tool for Coastguard. We had one case where a guy said he was having problems with his jetski at Rocky Bay on Wai- heke.Standing up to violence By RHIANNON HORRELL ALCOHOL-FUELLED violence is under scrutiny after a late night attack in Royal Oak. Andy Bergin says he was punched twice by a group of men outside a liquor shop near his home after asking them to turn down their music. The incident took place on Febru- ary 18, a busy Friday night, when Mr Bergin approached a group of people in a nearby carpark and asked them to keep the noise down. The couple's 20-month-old baby Ben was sick and trying to sleep. It was 11pm, the stereo was blaring and the windows were shak- ing,'' Mr Bergin says. The car looked like the Starship Enterprise -- the dashboard was probably worth more than the car. The doors were wide open.'' He says he spotted a man walking across the carpark with two armfuls of alcohol. I told him I had a sick sleeping baby and asked him to turn it down. He said: I'll do it when I'm good and ready'. The next thing I knew I was on the ground.'' Mr Bergin got up and walked around the car to note the regis- tration plate number but was struck a second time. There was blood on the side of my face and I had grazed knuckles. We refuse to be intimidated by these people. I don't go looking for trouble but if it comes to my door- step I'm going to protect my family.'' Mr Bergin's wife Gemma is also fed up with the alcohol-related problems in the area. In Onehunga and Royal Oak you can get away with whatever you like. It's people being drunk, swear- ing, singing, fighting and being loud. I've called 111 on numerous occasions about people fighting.'' She has made a submission to a select committee on the Alcohol Law Reform Bill. I hope we've managed to make a change. We have to stop putting up with bad behaviour.'' Onehunga police acting senior sergeant Grant Harris says the inci- dent is being looked at by the occu- pational licensing unit to assess any issues over the sale and control of liquor. We have been in touch with the liquor store owner and have uplifted some CCTV footage from the night concerned. The vehicle used by the offend- ing parties in this matter was immediately flagged on the police national intelligence system so that officers can deal with it appropri- ately if and when it is stopped by a patrol.'' Mr Harris says once the matter is assigned to an investigator, Mr Bergin will be contacted to see if there is new information that may help. He says there are many incidents needing to be looked at and they have to be prioritised. Unfortunately some matters at the minor end of the spectrum have a significant delay before being investigated, such as in this case.'' Auckland Council acting licensing and compliance manager Rosemary Hagg says the council is aware of the incident involving Mr Bergin. We have visited the premises in response to the complaint that was received. This matter is currently being pursued by police and we hope there is a positive outcome for Mr Bergin who was most likely left distressed by this attack.'' The liquor store is one of seven off-licences in the area. An application has been lodged with the Liquor Licensing Authority by police for the alleged sale of liquor to a minor on two separate occasions by this premises. The matter is presently before the authority.''
April 27th 2011
May 4th 2011