to 32,000 monthly
For full list, click above
* Huge hunt for couple
missing from Bright caravan park ...
Bumbling caravan crooks strike at Deception Bay ...
26,591 people reached.
Workers locked out as Jurgens Australia hits troubled times ... 21,595 people
Sunland Caravans dismisses allegations of financial problems
15,128 people reached.
Caravan rolls on Mooney Mooney Bridge ...
Byron Bay council takes action against rogue campers ...
14,928 people reached.
Brisbane RV goes into voluntary administration ... 12,261 people reached.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
responsibility after robbery
REGARDING the duty
of care taken by some caravan
Last December my husband and I were in a cabin at a Tamworth
caravan park and were robbed by three 18 to 19 year-olds.
They bashed into the cabin and, brandishing a knife, threatened to
kill us and demanded money.
They managed to steal a watch, medicines, handbag, purse, mobile
phone and charger.
The Incident was reported to Tamworth Police who made the cabin a
It was also reported to the park owner.
A report was sent to BIG4 who forwarded our complaint onto the
park manager, advising us they are not responsible for the parks.
It appears that individual owners are
responsible for park security.
The park had no security gates, allowing cars to come and go as
There were no CCTV cameras or buzzers to warn other patrons.
No written or verbal apology has been received from the park
Other campers should beware of this problem.
Maureen and John Carney.
'Less than nice'
DOING shows is very expensive and at
Melbourne in particular exhibitors are, in my opinion, treated
less than nice.
Unless, of course, you are Jayco or similar.
We have exhibited for the past five years and not once has an
organiser spoken to us in any way.
I think we will think twice about
supporting the show next year.
RV Trade and Fleet.
QUEENSLAND is the top state for
caravan ownership (see story here).
The reason NSW is so low is because of the rip-off amount of rego
we are charged.
A lot of people register their caravans
in other States because it is a fraction of the cost of NSW.
Frightening reminder of Chamberlain case
pulled from jaws of dingoes
infant boarding the rescue helicopter
AN island paradise off
the Queensland coast was in shock today after
dingoes dragged a sleeping child from a campervan in
the early hours. The 14-month old boy's cries awoke his father
who leapt from the vehicle and wrestled the
toddler from the jaws of two marauding dingoes
in the Eurong area of Fraser
Island shortly after midnight. A rescue helicopter from Bundaberg
airlifted the injured infant to Hervey Bay Hospital where he was said to
be in a stable condition. A Queensland Ambulance Service paramedic based
on the island treated the child's injuries until the helicopter arrived.
He was later being flown with his mother to the children's hospital in
Brisbane. The boy is understood to have suffered
puncture wounds to the neck and
a fractured skull. "The child's parents were woken by
their son's cries, which were becoming more distant," RACQ LifeFlight said
in a statement. The father had dashed outside to find the child had been
dragged some distance from the campervan. "The father fought off the dingo
and succeeded in getting the child away," it added. The family is believed
to be from Brisbane. It was the third attack on the popular camping
holiday island this year. A six-year-old boy was mauled in the same area
in January. The latest incident is being described as an "eerie reminder"
of the Azaria Chamberlain case in which the
nine-week-old baby was taken by a dingo at Ayers Rock
near Alice Springs.
Have your say
BACKS KEN'S CRUSADE
Program aims to reduce tension on the road
CARAVANNER Ken Wilson has launched a new program
designed to improve the often strained relationship between fellow
travellers and truckies.
His project has already received the backing of the industry's peak body
the Caravan Industry Association of Australia ‒ and Caravanning Queensland.
Mr Wilson and wife Jenny, from Bundaberg in Queensland, have been avid
caravanners for a decade and are often amazed at what happens on the road.
"We have all seen silly and dangerous driving and have witnessed firsthand
the lack of understanding by many drivers on how to help the truckies," Mr
Wilson told Caravanning News.
"Listening to comments and having conversations with truck drivers on the
UHF often highlights their frustration."
Mr Wilson put on his thinking cap and after three years has finally come
up with his Truck Friendly program, which is backed up with a
special website and 300mm easy recognisable green stickers for the rear of caravans and other RVs.
He has consulted various trucking Industry groups and
individuals, caravanning and motorhome clubs and associations to gain
knowledge to share through the program.
Mr Wilson has so far financed the project from his own
pocket but is now looking for sponsors.
The Caravan Industry Association of Australia is investigating the concept
of Truck Friendly which chief executive Stuart Lamont said looked
"very interesting as an adjunct to our Co-Exist campaign".
"Anything which assists in road safety and caravanners and
truck drivers respecting one another on the road is a good thing."
Check appliances and be safe
urges Easter campers
and caravanners to
be gas wise
Have your say
CARAVANNERS and campers
are being urged to check their gas appliances before embarking on their
Easter travels. Queensland Energy Minister Dr Anthony Lynham delivered
the message to families about to enjoy the Queensland weather. "In the
wake of a barbeque gas bottle explosion that injured a Brisbane teenager
recently it is timely to remind everyone that liquefied petroleum gas and
butane appliances are dangerous if stored, transported or used
incorrectly,Ē he said during a media conference at the Broadwater Tourist
Park on the Gold Coast. "While the incident happened at home, campers need
to be even more vigilant when it comes to gas safety as equipment and gear
can become damaged while it's collecting dust in the shed. When you're
packing up the rig and family for the break, you should check if any of
the equipment has been recalled since you last used it, secure all your
gas bottles during transport and when you set up camp make sure gas
connections are secure." Dr Lynham said that since last Easter, more than
10,000 butane cookers had been recalled nationally and campers should
check the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission website.
He said that during
the peak camping season it was particularly important for
neighbours to look out for each other when setting up and lighting
barbeques. "Campsites at Easter are packed, so don't forget to keep
children and others at a safe distance when you light up. If any leaks are
detected or suspected, turn the gas bottle off, move yourself and others
away from the area and donít use the equipment again until all the gas has
dispersed and it's confirmed to be safe. And any experienced camper knows
it's worth it to keep a portable, dry chemical fire extinguisher nearby."
(The gas bottle
portrayed above is for illustrative purposes only and is not associated
with any incidents)
appetite for a life of freedom'
Teachers and their kids
'lapping it up' on the road
from Newcastle in NSW and their young family say
they are "lapping it up" after setting off in their caravan for a mammoth
road trip around Australia. Trent and
Jessica Austin and their three children set off on their open-ended
odyssey shortly before Christmas and are already
about 7000 kilometres into the
adventure. And, they admit,
their new life not without its challenges, the biggest being
adjusting from living in a four-bedroom house to a 22ft caravan. "Whilst
it's daunting, we have a real sense of optimism and excitement for what
the future holds," they told Caravanning News. "And we feel
incredibly blessed to be in a position to make this investment in our
family. We may be away for 12 months, 24 months or never return home." The
couple said their "insatiable appetite for a life of freedom" followed a
five-week holiday. To read a personal account of their adventure, click on
Read More button.
The next chapter of a 'remarkable company'
Walkinshaw in full control
of New Age Caravans
IT'S official ... the
Walkinshaw Group now has full control of leading caravan manufacturer New
Age Caravans. Ryan Walkinshaw said in a statement
company had been "working steadily in the background" to develop new
aspects of New Age and was looking forward to accelerating the outputs
from his design and engineering teams. As part of the change in ownership,
New Age founder and chief executive Gabby Montagnese
(pictured above) will also take on a
role on the board of New Age Caravans. "What Gabby has achieved is truly
remarkable and with her continued support we look forward to building on
her legacy and creating the next chapter in this remarkable company," Mr
Walkinshaw said. Ms Montagnese (pictured)
commented: "One of the reasons I originally partnered with the Walkinshaw
organisation was to bring new design and engineering innovation to the
market. I look forward to working with the board and executive team to
keep developing and evolving." The Walkinshaw name first came to
prominence in Australia when Tom Walkinshaw first started racing his
Factory Jaguar XJS at the Bathurst 1000 in 1984, followed by a
three-vehicle assault on Mount Panorama in 1985. This foray was the
catalyst for a growing presence in the Australian automotive landscape,
eventually seeing Walkinshaw becoming the engine room behind the iconic
brands of the Holden Racing Team and Holden Special Vehicles.
"We pride ourselves on pushing the limits," Mr Walkinshaw said. "And as we
continue our automotive transition and achieve growth in what is a
challenging market we believe this spirit and attitude will serve us and
our customers well in delivering a unique caravan and camper product under
the New Age banner." No details of any financial arrangements were
Have your say
renamed after Jayco complaint
VICTORIA-based Essential Caravans has decided
to rename its semi-offroad Adventurer caravan after an approach by
Australia's biggest RV manufacturer. Jayco complained it already owned
the brand name and called on Essential, who has been using the name for
nearly seven years, to "cease and desist" from using it. "In the interest
of equanimity and maintaining positive relationships with all those in the
caravan industry, we have elected to comply with
these requests from Jayco," Essential Caravans and Design RV managing
director David Wilson said. All future orders and subsequent builds will
be renamed Outlander. "While the Jayco version and Essential version of
Adventurer are both very different, for the sake of minimising any market
confusion or disruption we have complied willingly with all requests from
Jayco," Mr Wilson said.
Have your say
parking spaces for RVs visiting the Isa
CARAVANNERS have welcomed Mount Isa's decision to provide more parking
space in the central business district.
The new facilities are opposite the Kmart Plaza at the
foot of Frank Aston Hill. The city council has provided enough parking
spaces for up to 15 RVs. Access is via Ada and Shackleton streets and the
exit is along Gray Street.. Only daytime parking is allowed and
overnight camping is banned. The $85,000 project formed part of the
council's parking review across the city.
Have your say
park prepares for blast from past
COBAR Caravan Park in central western NSW is bracing itself for an influx
of guests when the town steps back in time.
The inaugural Cobar Grey Mardi Gras is expected to attract
hoardes of tourists, including grey nomads, when the festival celebrates the
1950s, 60s and 70s from April 12 to 15. "Bookings have been pouring in,"
park manager Gaile Talu told Caravanning News. "It's a great
attraction for bringing in lots of tourists." The copper town's festival
will feature a street parade, rockabilly dance classes followed by a dance
night, exhibitions and sport days, plus art and craft workshops. Cobar
Shire Council said the event would give tourism operators an early Easter
boost and attract the tourism dollar of grey nomads.
Have your say
feeds family after robbery
A KIND-HEARTED businessman stepped in after a young family was robbed of
all its cash at a Hervey Bay holiday park in Queensland. The sneak
thief made off with a wallet and purse containing $1000 as Sunshiine
Coast holidaymakers slept in their cabin during a weekend away at the
Ingenia holiday park in Torquay. And when he heard the sad story,
Ricardo's Italiano and Seafront Fish and Chips owner Jay Hodmain stepped
in with free meals for the duration of the family's holiday. "We wanted to
help as much as possible," he told Caravanning News. "Being in that
situation would be terrible. We didn't want them to go away with
negativity from that experience and not come back ... we wanted to turn it
around for them and give them a Hervey Bay positive experience."
book aims at preventing rollovers
PROLIFIC writer Collyn Rivers has published a new book aimed at preventing
caravan rollovers. Why Caravans Roll Over - and
how to prevent it is described as a "down-to-earth but technically
accurate" guide to all aspects of caravan and tow vehicle stability. The
former RAF ground radar engineer and motor industry research engineer said
the reasons why tow vehicles and caravans jackknife and roll were "many
and complex", but knowing why and how could help prevent them happening. He
also points the finger at caravan manufacturers who, he claims, have "gone
raving mad" with weights.
RV parking planned for Cobram
GREY nomads heading for the Victorian town of Cobram will soon find it
easier to park. The State Government has made a
$500,000 contribution towards a near $1 million project aimed at
revitalising the town on the southern banks of the Murray River. The
welcome funding will be spent on a new piazza, upgraded parking for
tourists and improved walking paths around the town, which is twinned with
the NSW town of Barooga on the opposite side of the river. The project
will also provide additional parking in Federation Park including long
bays for motorhomes, caravans, boats and campers. Minister for Regional
Development Jaclyn Symes said more than 2.5 million tourists visited the
Murray River region each year. "With these important upgrades we will
breathe new life into Cobram, making it an even more appealing spot for
locals and tourists alike," she added.
Have your say
closure 'may sound death knell for town'
LOCALS have questioned a council's wisdom in closing a popular caravan
park at Clarence Town in New South Wales.
Residents and businesses have warned the shock decision to pull down the
shutters at Williams River Holiday Park could sound the death knell for
the small community in the State's Hunter region. But Dungog Shire Council
argued it had no alternative after a review of the park identified "safety
and compliance" deficiencies. It has promised to investigate the potential
for free camping sites in the town.
Helping region get
back on feet
Govt pumps $1m into cyclone-
ravaged areas to attract tourists
Photo: Dennis Amor
THE Queensland Government will spend $1 million
promoting North Queensland as the southern grey nomads prepare to head
north for the State's winter sunshine. The funding is particularly
aimed at Townsville, the Whitsundays and the Tropical North to support
tourism businesses in the wake of the recent devastating monsoon. Tourism
Industry Development Minister Kate Jones said the funding was "especially
important" heading into the Easter break and into the winter months when
people living in the cold southern states dreamt of escaping to the warm,
tropical climate of north Queensland. "The clean-up has well and truly
begun and now it's time to help the region get back on its feet," she
said. "Townsville, the Whitsundays and Tropical North Queensland are three
of our most important destinations for tourists. The tourism industry is
vital in these regions, supporting thousands of local jobs and pumping
millions into the economy."
Have your say
Roamers plan next get-together
OWNERS of Boroma caravans are continuing to
keep the brand name alive. The now defunct manufacturer produced what
was regarded by many as the Rolls Royce of caravans.
But it shocked the industry when it was forced into liquidation in
2008 as sales plummeted and jittery customers cancelled orders
during a global economic downturn.
Loyal owners of its caravans
refused to let the brand name die and have successfully organised
annual get-togethers ever since. Members of the Boroma Roamers club are
now planning their next rally at Glen Innes showgrounds in NSW from
October 10 to 12.
Have your say
attracts 49,000 visitors
THE six-day 2019 Victorian Caravan, Camping and Touring Supershow
attracted over 49,000 visitors, its organisers have revealed.
Caravan Industry Victoria chief executive Rob Lucas said
the event featured world firsts, with the 250 exhibitors showcasing more
new products than ever before. "We had good weather throughout the show
which assisted with everyone's overall enjoyment," he added. Attractions
included the highly successful new AL-KO Innovation Hub which presented
not one but two world firsts, being the OzXcorp Smart Caravan and the
OzXcorp Gasless Recreation Platform and Centralised Energy Management
parks brace for bumper Easter
THE Sunshine Coast's council-owned caravan parks are bracing themselves
for a bumper Easter. There has been a surge in
bookings for sites and cabins as holidaymakers shake off the miseries of
the recent bad weather. And the Queensland council has warned that locals
will have to be quick to snap up the few sites available at its six
caravan parks, which it describes as the "perfect staycation option for
the Easter break".
Journey owners heading for week of fun
A GROUP of Jayco Journey owners is planning a national getaway to
Victoria. More than 150 members of the
Facebook-based Jayco Journey Owners Australia will be heading for the
event which begins at the Apex RiverBeach Holiday Park in Mildura on May
24. Halls Jayco in Mildura is putting on a slap-up dinner for everyone and
Jayco Australia will provide entertainment. "It's going be an amazing week
of fun," spokesperson Gillian Neck told Caravanning News. The group
was founded in January 2014 and now has a Facebook membership of
over 6500. The site allows owners of Jayco Journey pop-tops and full-size
caravans to hold discussions on the models and share their travels with
Have your say
women turn to camping, caravanning
MORE women are embarking on caravan and camping trips, according to the
latest statistics. Data from the Tourism
Research Australia National Visitor Survey has revealed that in the year
ending September 2018, 5.2 million caravan and camping trips were taken by
the fairer sex. And they chalked up a total of 24.4 million nights during
their travels. The numbers have increased significantly in the last five
bandits beat hasty retreat
POLICE were hunting bumbling bandits who attempted to rob a caravan north
of Brisbane. They gained access by climbing
through an unlocked window of the RV at a caravan park on Deception Bay
Road, Deception Bay. But the clumsy raiders knocked over a table and in
the commotion were forced to make a quick exit by climbing back out of the
same window. Police said it was unknown if anything was stolen but a
forensic examination had been conducted and investigations were
Have your say
stress and worries
Valuable advice for successful
SUNRISE Caravans north of Brisbane has released some
invaluable advice for successful dog-friendly trips. "Having a caravan
allows you the freedom to travel as you please, and take your canine
friend with you," the Burpengary company said. "But there are some
important things to remember. Most dogs are quite happy to travel in the
car, but caravanning is a different experience." It suggests a series of
shorter trips, noting how long it takes for the canine to become restless.
"This way you can schedule in stops for toilet breaks and leg stretching,"
Sunrise said. Home comforts, including bedding/blankets, favourite toys
and treats, added a sense of familiarity and could help a dog to relax.
Caravanners should check that their pet's identity chip is working and
ensure vaccinations are up to date to avoid the risk of sickness. "Be sure
to check for dog-friendly parks and restaurants in advance," Sunrise said.
"This will avoid last minute searching, or being asked to move on. You
won't want to leave your pet alone, so planning your trip will eliminate
stress and worries."
Have your say
Coast expo a 'van-tastic' success
CARAVANNING Queensland has hailed this year's Gold Coast Caravan and
Outdoor Expo a "van-tastic" success. More than
15,000 'cara-fans' flocked to the event, a 26 percent increase on past
years and proving that the caravanning lifestyle is well and truly
appealing. Families, nomads and young enthusiasts alike enjoyed displays
from more than 120 exhibitors showcasing almost 500 recreational vehicles.
Caravanning Queensland general manager Jason Plant said the lifestyle
appeal was very much a contributing factor to the event's success,
together with an incredible line-up of exhibitors and products.
award honours Gerry Ryan
The Caravan Industry Association of Australia has introduced a new award
to honour Jayco founder Gerry Ryan. The Gerry
Ryan OAM Award for Innovation recognises Mr Ryan's longstanding
contribution to the industry. The association says innovation is defined
as "the implementation of creative ideas in order to generate value. Value
can be measured in increased revenue, cost savings, efficiency gains or
social improvement such as safety".
Have your say
start for Discovery resort
DISCOVERY Parks, which operates over 60 caravan, lifestyle and tourist
parks around the country, is feeling starstruck.
Its latest park, opened just weeks ago on Rottnest Island in Western
Australia, has already attracted some famous faces, including Hollywood's
Chris Hemsworth and his family. They dropped in for a holiday and were
among the first guests to stay in one of the resort's superior family glamping tents. Other Hollywood heavyweight Matt Damon visited for the day
and Boomtown Rats lead singer Sir Bob Geldof also made an appearance.
Compliance event hailed a hit
CARAVANNING Queensland, QTMR Compliance, RACQ, Queensland Police's Moreton
District Crime Prevention Unit and industry engineers joined forces
recently for a Caravan Compliance Day at Redcliffe north of Brisbane.
Forty-eight RV owners voluntarily turned up to have their caravans and tow
vehicles inspected for gas and weight compliance. Experts were on hand to
give advice on road safety, tips when travelling, outback road safety,
security of homes when away and much more. A spokesperson said the day
proved to be a "huge success" and more compliance days will be planned for
the Moreton District through out the year. Dates aqre still to be
confirmed but will be advertised.
Have your say
160 exhibitors set to display products
MORE than 160 exhibitors will be showcasing their products when the
Queensland Caravan, Camping, Fishing and 4x4 Expo gets underway.
The three-day event beginning April 26 will be held at the Sunshine Coast
Council's Nambour. Showgrounds and will feature new cars and 4x4s,
caravans, camper trailers, family vans and hybrid vans. Division 10
Councilor Greg Rogerson said the expo was one of the region's major
events. "This is a great opportunity for people to head to Nambour
Showgrounds to talk one-on-one with a range of exhibitors displaying the
latest products and services in one location," he said.
slams industry's 'toolkit'
A GROUP of caravanners and campers has issued an 18-page rebuttal of the
industry's latest advice for caravan park operators.
The 550-member Facebook-based
Save our Low
Cost Camping site has accused the Caravan Industry Association of
Australia and Caravanning Queensland of "aggressively targeting" councils
throughout Australia to close down or not develop free or low-cost
campsites. They claim this is the purpose of their Non-Compliant
Camping Toolkit for Caravan Park Operators publication released to
caravan parks only (click
here for a link to the document). "This is a very serious threat
to our lifestyles and if allowed to continue will ultimately see all
low-cost campsites closed and their use become a thing of the past,
leaving us with no choice other than a caravan park or to cease
travelling," the Facebook group said.
Have your say
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REGARDING last month's story on the towing plea
bringing abuse (see story here).
I support a towing endorsement on licences, regardless of licence
This must cover all forms of towing including box trailers, boat
trailers, horse floats, camper trailers and caravans etc of all shapes
It must be adopted nationally with a reasonable lead time.
Courses must be nationally accredited, at a reasonable cost and
discounted for those on a pension.
I feel this would be a possible way forward.
But my greatest fear is that it would become hodgepodge and a
nightmare as the States try to put their marks on it.
In all my years of driving I have never, when on the
speed limit, had a caravanner sit two metres
off my rear bumper, flashing his lights.
Never had a caravanner pull out to overtake,
forcing me off the road.
Never had a caravanner cut corners and force me off the road.
Never had a caravanner simply change lanes,
forcing me to take evasive action.
However, all these have happened to me by
"professional" truck drivers who have had training and hold a heavy
In my 25 years with the NSW Ambulance Service, I have seen many stupid
and dangerous acts.
One thing I can tell you is truck accidents are far more serious than
The only reason there are not more truck accidents is because usually
other motorists get out of the way when trucks force their way.
REGARDING Melbourne's notorious low bridge (see story
We were lucky enough to notice the bridge in time to turn right to get on
to another road.
Better signage is needed to take you to the loading area for the Tasmanian
A GROUP has been spreading what I regard as untruthful and
libellous lies about Sunland Caravans (see story here).
I own one and they make the best of the best award-winning caravans, with an
unsurpassed reputation for building and service.
Why the group is able to spread harmful rumours without being prosecuted has
on Jurgens being back in
production see story
has been going on for a long time.
glad I don't work there any more.
The uncertainty of it was very unsettling.