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Caravanning News is registered with the National Library of Australia's PANDORA archive

AUGUST 2020
 


Readership: Up to 32,000 monthly
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Breaking News headline
For full list, click above

Caravanning Queensland will hold free educational towing and weights "masterclasses" at Nambour Showgrounds on August 29.

Dalrymple Cabin and Van Park at Charters Towers on Queensland's Lynd Highway bought for reported $2.2 million by the park's operators, Brad and Tanya Chilton.

 

* Caravanner tests positive to COVID-19 virus ... 21,703 people reached.

* Thieves make off with Spaceland caravan ... 10,952 people reached.

* Caravan rollover sparks weight warning ... 9182 people reached.

* Motorist fined for causing caravan rollover on Bruce Hwy ... 9087 people reached.

* Official go-ahead for Suburban gas water heaters recall ... 7762 people reached.

* Camper trailer builder goes into liquidation ... 5573 people reached.

MORE LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Signs not such a dotty idea after all

REGARDING last month's story on dotty signposts being an aid to road safety (see story here).

This is a great idea and I hope it gets taken up Australiawide.

The other thing that needs improvement is the condition of the lay-up areas.

Many have very potholed entrances, which make it dangerous if pulling in with any speed.

Alan Johnston.


Not happy

TWO guests tested positive for coronavirus after staying at a NSW caravan park (see story here).

We are Queenslanders staying at Moonie Crossroads tonight and we are surrounded by Mexican Victorians.

Not happy!

Cheryl Barnes.




 

GroovyNew logo  'Birthdays taken away too soon'

Caravan forum members pay tribute to founder Groovy

MEMBERS of the on-line Caravaners Forum have posthumously commemorated the birthday of one of its founding members. Greg Juleff (Groovy) from Wollongong in NSW played a pivotal role in launching one of Australia's major chat forum for caravanners and other RVers in 2002. It now has a membership topping 40,000. Groovy, who died of cancer several years ago, regarded the forum as his first love and contributed a staggering 75,000-plus messages on whole range of topics, sometimes controversial. Tributes were posted on the forum yesterday. "Another birthday you never got to celebrate, Groovy ... birthdays were taken away from you too soon," wrote forum member Motherhen. "Cakes all round and very special thoughts go to a mate of many of us here," said fellow member Lance. He said Groovy had been a very strong supporter of the forum "going back a lot of years". "His efforts and perseverance at Caravaners Forum will long be remembered by the early members here," he added. Have your say


Kui Parks advert


Production lines grind to a halt

VIRUS CLOSES VIC'S CARAVAN FACTORIES

By Dennis Amor
Have your say

Robert LUCAS

THOUSANDS of workers have been left idle until October after more than 50 caravan manufacturers were ordered to stop production in Victoria in the face of worsening coronavirus conditions.

The peak body for the state's caravan and camping industry had held urgent discussions with the state government to clarify whether factories could stay open.

Caravan Industry Victoria said the stage 4 COVID restrictions announced by the Victorian Government were "not as clear" as they could have been.

Chief executive Robert Lucas (pictured) told Caravanning News that CIV had presented alternatives for RV builders to stay open, maybe in limited form.

COVID HITS JAYCO

TWENTY cases of COVID-19 have been linked to the giant Jayco factory in Victoria, it has been revealed. The company employs more than a thousand people at its production plant in Dandenong. It is understood the first case was detected on July 30. Staff who returned a positive test for COVID-19, were put under the care of the company doctor and Department of Health and Human Services.


Thousands of Melbourne businesses were in turmoil after being ordered to shut their doors.

Caravan Industry Association of Australia chief executive Stuart Lamont has predicted that some businesses would not survive.

Victoria is regarded as the main hub for manufacturing recreational vehicles for the Australian market, supplying 90 percent of RVs.

"If our manufacturing members close then there will be an impact nationally as to the supply of products," Mr Lucas said.

"We ask all customers of our members to understand this lockdown is driven by the Victorian Government and as a responsible association we support the lockdown to get on top of this deadly virus."

He said everyone needed to be mindful of the shutdown's long-term effects on members' livelihoods, which were at stake.

"The association is very conscious of this and is offering significant support for all members.

"We are very resilient and will bounce back as an industry. We just want to make sure customers of our members are patient through this difficult period."

Crusader Caravans Melbourne said it would close "with a heavy heart".



Council selling old caravans 'Renovator's dream'

Old ladies from yesteryear up
for grabs on Copper Coast

HARDLY likely to find these two old ladies of yesteryear in a caravan dealer's glitzy showroom. But they might be a renovator's dream and are being offered for sale by a South Australian council. They are among 10 abandoned vehicles being disposed of by Copper Coast Council. Apparently, the unregistered RVs had been left on a roadway or public place for over 24 hours. Offers for the caravans, one black and the other a Franklin Caravella, will be received until September 1. Have your say


Stolen ExpandaPolice seek help

Jayco caravan with Victorian plates stolen in Queensland

A CARAVAN bearing Victorian registration plates has been stolen from a property in a Queensland coastal town. Police are now seeking help from the community to help trace the RV which disappeared from an address in Burrum Heads. The thieves struck in Rosslyn Drive between 5pm on August 5 and 7.30am on August 10 and made off with an 18ft white and green 2016 Jayco Outback Expanda caravan, registration number X73139. Anyone with information is urged to contact police and quote the reference number QP2001674730.   Have your say


Cape Leveque signPlanning for more visitors

Peninsular campgrounds benefit from WA's $150m recovery plan

THE WA Government has released a comprehensive WA Recovery Plan which will inject $150 million into the state's tourism industry. Projects include a new $1.64 million 37-site Camping with Custodians campground at Djarindjin on the Dampier Peninsula and upgrades costing $2.2 million at two existing Camping with Custodians camping grounds on the peninsula involving showers, toilets, kitchen, land scaping, picnic areas and additional camping and caravan bays. The work will accommodate the increase in travellers expected to head to the Dampier Peninsula after the Broome-Cape Leveque Road is sealed. Have your say


Highway crash50m wall of flame in fog

Witnesses sought after fiery crash
on Qld's fog-shrouded Bruce Hwy

INVESTIGATORS appealed for witnesses following a serious traffic crash involving a caravan and several trucks on Queensland's fog-shrouded Bruce Highway. The pile-up happened at Gindoran near Miriam Vale as a Ford Ranger utility towing a caravan was heading north and encountered heavy fog. When the caravanner reduced speed a prime mover towing two semi-trailers collided with the rig and stopped briefly. Then, as the truckie pulled away, a second B-double struck the rear of the truck. A third prime mover towing two semi-trailers, also travelling north, hit the rear of the second truck causing them both to catch fire. As a result, two truck drivers, a 42-year-old man and 54-year-old man, remain in hospital receiving treatment for injuries. The caravanners are not thought to have been injured. Police who arrived at scene said they were confronted with a 50-metre wall of flames and have praised the actions of motorists for providing first aid to those injured. Have your say


Kids born at park'A first-time mum'

Twins born at Queensland caravan park ... no kiddin'

TWINS have been born at a Queensland caravan park, but not without problems! The owners and guests at Malanda Falls Caravan Park in the Cairns highlands had been eagerly awaiting for a baby to arrive. But, park manager Janine told Caravanning News, the proud new mum was not a traveller ... but an Australian miniature goat named Stormy which she had raised since it was two days old. "She was a first-time mum," Janine explained. "On the day, I saw that only one hoof had presented and I could see she was in distress because the baby was stuck. I called a farmer friend and he came over and pulled the kid free, then to our surprise another one shot out. I was always told they didn't have twins on their first time but that theory is a myth!". Janine said the park was home to a range of animals which were "a hit" with all ages. Have your say


Missing manConcern for man's welfare

Police plea over missing traveller and his three-legged dog

UPDATE: Police have reported that Mr Platt has been found "safe and well".

QUEENSLAND police have appealed for help in locating a missing 79-year-old man and his three-legged dog. Robert Platt was on a road trip and returning from Cairns to his home in Scarborough, but has not been seen since August 4. It is believed he had stayed at an unknown campground in Herberton and planned on travelling to Ravenshoe. Police said they were concerned for his welfare as the behaviour is out of character and he suffers a medical condition. Mr Platt was travelling in a Jayco Conquest campervan bearing Queensland registration plates 721 VKW. He is described as caucasian, of proportionate build with grey hair and a beard. Have your say


Scarness Caravan ParkDiscounted fees for guests

Scarness park set to partially reopen by next month

SCARNESS Caravan Park on Queensland's Fraser Coast will partially reopen for self-contained caravans and RVs by September. Travellers and guests will be offered discounted fees as part of a Fraser Coast Regional Council's plan to progressively upgrade the site over the next 18 months. Councillor David Lee said the park was partially closed in late March due to COVID-19 restrictions and then was completely shut down in June after testing identified the need to replace underground electrical cabling throughout the entire site. Read more button


Caravan rollover My Perry Road

Woman airlifted to hospital

Rescuers struggle for 2.5hrs to free trapped caravanner

Story-Photos: Dennis Amor

EMERGENCY workers struggled for two-and-a-half hours to free a trapped woman after a caravan rollover on a remote Queensland road. The 73-year-old driver lost control of his Land Rover towing an Arrow dual-axle caravan as it descended a hill on the Gin Gin to Mount Perry Road near Boolboonda Tunnel. The couple was flung forward as the rig smashed into a roadside tree, trapping the woman by her legs. The force of the impact separated the caravan body from its chassis and reduced it to pile of wreckage. The driver was taken by ambulance to Bundaberg Base Hospital while the women, 67, was airlifted to the Sunshine Coast Hospital. Close friend Ray Rodger, who was waiting for the couple to arrive in Mount Perry, told Caravanning News they had been travelling in tandem to Wuruma Dam. "I knew something was wrong when they did not arrive so retraced my steps only to come across the accident scene," he said. "I was totally shocked ... I couldn't believe what had happened." Meanwhile, southbound lanes of the Bruce Hwy near Nambour in Queensland were closed by a caravan rollover this afternoon. No injuries reported.

Gin Gin-Mt Perry Road caravan crash


Julia Creek bathhouse'We can now focus on economy'

Reopening of Julia Creek's bathhouses a great win for outback tourism: Minister

McKINLAY Shire Council in outback Queensland has re-opened the unique and popular artesian bathhouses at its Julia Creek Caravan Park. It has also unveiled two new 'Boundary Rider' style huts along with new landscaping and a water feature. Tourism Minister Kate Jones said the announcement was a great win for the outback tourism industry. "Because Queenslanders have done such a great job fighting COVID-19, we can now start to focus on our economic recovery," she said. "We know that Aussies are itching to get out of the house and escape winter." She said that Outback Queensland was "the perfect place for a holiday" Read more button


Mark Molochino'Meeting the needs of a wide range of tourists'

Over 250 submissions for Townsville's draft RV and camping strategy

QUEENSLAND'S Townsville City Council has updated its proposed Recreational Vehicle and Camping Strategy after receiving more than 250 submissions on the draft. The strategy was developed to improve visitor numbers, increase the amount of money spent in the region and review community feedback. Acting Mayor Mark Molachino (pictured) said the council welcomed the responses it received during the two-month survey. "RV and camping travel is one of the fastest-growing tourist sectors in Australia, so we need to make sure the region can meet the needs of a wide range of tourists, especially in the peak season from June to August," he said. Read more button


Savannah Way sign100,000 megalitires available

More water could open door to tourism opportunities for Savannah Way parks

CARAVAN and tourist parks on Queensland sectors of the iconic Savannah Way could benefit from an increase in Gulf water. Minister for Natural Resources, Mines and Energy Anthony Lynham has announced that more than 100,000 megalitres have been made available to help drive jobs and development in farming and tourism in the north western Gulf. Offers and new packages are now available for existing users as well as potential new small, medium or large business ventures along the Gilbert, Norman, Leichhardt and Nicholson rivers, Dr Lynham said. "The water may also create tourism opportunities for caravan and holiday parks on the Queensland portion of the 3700km Savannah Way," he added. Have your say


Retreat owners pour $11,000 into remote town

Owners of Retreat caravans at their Boulia get-together

CARAVANNERS have poured a whopping $11,000 into the coffers of a remote outback town in Queensland. Members of the Queensland Retreat Caravan owners group spent a week at Boulia in the state's central west. "Our group is about going to small country towns and supporting them," organisers Barry and Sandy Neilsen told Caravanning News. "At each get-together we do a spend sheet to see how much money is spent in them and we can tell you that there was a total of $11,333 spent while we were at Boulia." A raffle and BBQ breakfast and sausage sizzle raised another $400 for the Royal Flying Doctor Service. The group plans to return for next year's annual camel races. Have your say


SWARMS of caravanners are heading to far north Queensland as the deadly coronavirus epidemic continues its stranglehold. Some tourist parks as far north as the Daintree are reporting brisk business as grey nomads and others in their RVs escape the state's chilly southern regions. "You wouldn't know there was a problem with a thing called COVID," Brisbane caravanner Charlie Brereton told Caravanning News. "It's quite a delight to be on the road at the moment without the hordes of grey nomads from Victoria ... and there's plenty of space at rest areas, too." Cairns caravan parks reported being near capacity again while there was a steady turnover of travellers at the Daintree Rainforest Village's Riverview caravan park 140km to the north, with one intrepid traveller telling Caravanning News: "It's so peaceful here. You wouldn't know there was a lockdown." Have your say


Weber BBQACCC issues national recall

Lotus 'van owners warned of burns risk from external BBQs

Have your say

OWNERS of Lotus caravans have been warned there is a risk of burns when using some external slide-out BBQs. In a nationwide alert, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission reveals that some Weber Q1000 barbecues were modified to help their installation on caravans sold between January 2016 and June 2018. "This has resulted in the temperature of the surrounding stainless steel surfaces exceeding the relevant gas standard's requirements," it said. "If the surfaces overheat, there is an increased risk of burn injuries." ACCC has advised owners to stop using them and contact their nearest Lotus Caravans dealership. Suppliers included Alan Grahams, Brisbane RVs, Chapman Caravans, Dave Benson Caravans, Freestyle RVs, Gateway Caravans, Gold Coast Caravan Sales, Harbour City Caravans, Hervey Bay Caravans, Ian Grant's Caravans, Lotus Caravans, Luxury RVs WA and Wagga Caravans Centre.


Childers RV signChamber's plan to boost business

Sign of the times for RVers heading
to friendly Childers in Queensland

Childers Chamber of Commerce in Queensland has applied for a $5000 council grant to fund a community noticeboard adjacent to the town's popular RV-friendly overnight parking area. Chamber president Teena Mammino said she recently counted 46 RVs at the facility. "There's no doubt that establishing Childers as an RV-friendly town was an excellent initiative by the council," she added. The rest area, complete with dump point, was opened three years ago and lies just a couple of hundred metres off the busy Bruce Highway. Local traders and tourist operators will be able to utilise the noticeboard for their benefit. Photo: Caravanning News. Have your say


Caravan smash on BruceThree treated for minor injuries

Driver fined $400 for causing caravan rollover on Bruce Hwy

Have your say

A MOTORIST has been slapped with a $400 fine for causing an accident in which a caravan rolled on Queensland's Bruce Highway. The 62-year-old woman allegedly failed to obey a stop sign in the Kurrimine Beach area in the state's far north. Police said a white Colorado towing a caravan was travelling south on the highway when the driver of a gold Nissan X-Trail went over a stop sign at the intersection of Murdering Point Road "and pulled out in front" of the rig. The 60-year-old interstate driver of the Colorado was unable to brake in time and hit the X-Trail, causing both vehicles to spin 180 degrees and flip onto their sides. Both drivers and the passenger in the Colorado received medical treatment for minor injuries.


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No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted without
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Copyright 2005 Dennis Amor
All Rights Reserved


 

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LETTERS TO
THE EDITOR

Letter man

High chance that trend contributes to RV rollovers

OVER the last few years it has become quite noticeable that caravan builds are getting higher and higher.

This is to obtain clearance for off-road travelling ... when most will never leave the bitumen in their lifetime!

I have been an RV traveller for 19 years and am wondering whether this trend is contributing to a percentage of rollovers that are occurring around Australia.

The higher the caravan, the higher the centre of gravity and the less stable they could become at speed on bitumen roads and in high winds.

Jeremy Smith.


Recall query

REFERRING to last month's story on BBQs sparking a Lotus recall (see story here)

Why would owners be referred to dealers and not to Lotus Caravans?

After all, they were the installers of the BBQs.

Mark Beckwith.