"In the David and Goliath battle, this was one fight that David didn't win."Bev McArthur
The recent $130,000 fine received by Powercor over a safety breach that caused the 2018 St Patrick's Day fires was a monumental disgrace (The Standard, December 15-16).
It might have been a perfectly appropriate legal decision, but that doesn't make it a fair one, most certainly not for those whose lives were changed forever on 17th March that year.
Powercor accepted that its failure to maintain a power pole caused conductors to clash, sparking the Terang fire. Locals know the statistics better than anyone - but a $130,000 fine hardly seems a relevant number when 20 homes were destroyed, more than 10,000 livestock killed, 219 farms impacted and 40,000 hectares of land burnt in the Gazette, Garvoc, Terang, Hawkesdale, Cobden and Camperdown areas.
Already traumatised, exhausted, disappointed - this fine may exacerbate those feelings.
It was hardly the tonic for a region needing hope and belief.
In the David and Goliath battle, this was one fight that David didn't win. Having whittled six charges down to one - the community can only hope Powercor feels an almighty weight on its shoulders to uphold its end of the legal bargain, imbedding a steely focus to improve safety processes.
Given power poles near Camperdown came down in the high winds that lashed the region in October, one could understand if local cynicism was riding high towards all power companies. Under this State Government, country communities have gotten used to not asking for much. But when their lives are at stake, they should. Powerlines should go underground. The wind doesn't blow there.
Bev McArthur, Member for Western Victoria
CBD like 'Bourke Street'
Drove into Warrnambool this morning and thought I was in Bourke Street Melbourne in peak hour. Traffic banked up for blocks all because of the city council's ridiculous give-way coming out of a roundabout law. Whoever thought this up, needs to return to the distant galaxy they come from.
Hugh Jones, Warrnambool
Great work team
Can I commend Warrnambool's Monaghan's Pharmacy for the service they offer? I walked in to book a booster vaccine and walked out vaccinated thanks to a "no show" that day. Responsiveness, cheerfulness and professionalism, they have it in spades. I wish them every success in attracting an additional pharmacist (The Standard, December 18). A new recruit will be lucky to be employed in such a great workplace.
Marilyn Schroeder, Warrnambool
PM needs to show leadership
Scott Morrison squibbed it by refusing to mandate indoor mask wearing when the health advice was to do so. His pandering to the anti vaxxers is highly irresponsible and a demonstrated lack of leadership and exposes the rest of us. When is the next election?
Tony Delaney, Warrnambool
No justifictaion for restrictions
It's all very well for Premier Daniel Andrews to go on holidays, to be able to go to the pub, to dine out, or to have coffee with his family and friends and go to the movies, art galleries and theatre this festive season.
I can't, thanks to him.
His restrictions on the unvaccinated are childish and churlish and can't be justified on health grounds as vaccination rates in Victoria are now over 90 per cent.
Why can't the Premier show some good will, especially at this time of year? Why can't I enjoy the same freedoms as the unvaccinated do in NSW?
I challenge you Mr Andrews, to walk a mile in an unvaccinated person's shoes and see how it feels like to be treated like a pariah.
Unvaccinated people like myself have paid taxes all our lives and been law abiding and even served our country in the military and this is the reward we get for being a good citizen over many decades?
What possible justification can there be for having vaccine apartheid in this state?
Alan Barron, Grovedale
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