INQUIRY: Darren Eather (second from right) called for standard freight rates in 2001.
INQUIRY: Darren Eather (second from right) called for standard freight rates in 2001. Linda Mantova

Freighting debates and fluttering heart rates

ON THIS day in 1991, a Warwick resident experienced a Christmas surprise like no other, warm temperatures swept through the Rose City, and our farm animal friends got a whole lot cooler.

An inquiry into the trucking industry was welcomed by Warwick's operators.

The inquiry came after calls were made following a Queensland industrial relations hearing involving a workplace practice dispute between a company based in Brisbane and the Transport Workers Union.

Wickham's Transport director Darren Eather said at the time he wanted the inquiry to widen its topics of focus to include freight rates. "There should be a standard set for freight rates so owners and drivers are not forced to run deadlines on deliveries," he said.

In a truly heartwarming Christmas moment, Warwick businesswoman Karen Oakland received the shock of her life.

She received a special visit from 14 members of her family from Melbourne.

This was the first time since a young girl she had seen her family together.

"I honestly thought I was hallucinating as Mum and Dad and my brothers and sisters and their children raced towards me with open arms," she said.

"This is one Christmas I'm never going to forget."

A top of 36 degrees was predicted for Christmas Day, an experience nothing new for Warwick.

On this day 16 years ago, the Rose City was preparing for another sweltering Christmas,

"Mid-to-high 30s look to be the go at this stage and that is certainly what is forecast for (Christmas Day)," the weather bureau reported.

The animals at the weekly Pig and Calf Sale received some cool news, with a new shade cloth to be erected at the saleyard.

This was the result of a meeting between Warwick DPI stock inspector Lindsay Goodwin and sale managers McDougall and Sons.

"In the winter, animals need more rather than less sun, so it was necessary for sale organisers to be able to take them down," MrGoodwin said.

The annual Christmas spar took place at Warwick Boxing Club Hall, featuring boxers of all ages and abilities.

Younger fighters joined in with more experienced boxers, giving them a great learning experience.

"Great emphasis is put on training new boxers in a safe way so they develop their skills but don't get hurt," club president Sel Brackin said.



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