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TWO MEN AIRLIFTED TO HOSPITAL FOLLOWING WOLLOMBI CRASH

Two men have been airlifted to Newcastle’s John Hunter Hospital after the car they were travelling in hit a tree near Wollombi in the Hunter Valley. It’s understood the 29-year-olds were travelling along Paynes Crossing Road around midday when the driver swerved to avoid a kangaroo, before losing control of the vehicle and crashing through a fence. One of the men suffered neck and feet injuries, the other was taken to hospital as a precaution.

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WARNING IN PLACE FOR BUSHFIRE BURNING WEST OF PORT MACQUARIE

UPDATE: Crews on the fire ground at Mortons Creek have gained the upper hand, with the warning being downgraded to advice. The fire has already burnt through around 200 hectares. Advice: Bellangry Rd, Mortons Ck (Port Macquarie-Hastings LGA). Crews have gained the upper hand on the fire burning near Bellangry Rd, Mortons Ck approximately 25 km W of Port Macquarie. The threat of fire has eased, with crews protecting a number of isolated properties. #NSWRFS pic.twitter.com/fe2jw7UxQq — NSW RFS (@NSWRFS) July 20, 2018 EARLIER: A Watch & Act warning is in place for a bushfire burning northwest of Wauchope near Port Macquarie. The fire at Mortons Creek is travelling in an easterly direction, and has crossed Bellangry Road. Rural Fire Service crews are in position, to protect isolated properties.  

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REPORTS 3-YEAR-OLD GIRL PULLED FROM HUNTER VALLEY DAM

Ambulance crews are responding to reports a three-year-old girl is in cardiac arrest, after being pulled from a dam in the Hunter Valley. Emergency services were alerted to the incident at Greta, at around 2 o’clock this afternoon, with five ambulances tasked to the Nelson Street address. The Westpac Rescue Helicopter has also flown to the scene. FULL STORY: YOUNG GIRL IN SERIOUS CONDITION, PULLED FROM DAM IN HUNTER VALLEY

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STOCKTON BEACH TO REMAIN OPEN DESPITE ASBESTOS CONCERNS

Stockton Beach will remain open, despite suspected asbestos washing ashore. It’s unclear where the debris is coming from, but it’s likely from a decades-old dumping site, exposed by recent wild weather. Residents say they have been clearing the beach daily, finding material believed to be asbestos. Newcastle Council staff are now undertaking daily inspections of the beach and removing any items that could pose a risk to the public. People are being urged not to remove material themselves.

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GAV’S WEATHER: COOL WEATHER TO RETURN

There’s a small amount of cloud across Northern New South Wales today, as a front sweeps in bringing with it cold southern air. Snow has fallen across the alps and Central Tablelands as a result of the icy blast, with winds set to ease as the front passes. Expect further freezing nights though, as a high pressure system dominates meaning it will be cold and sunny. There is no relief in sight for those on the land either, with drought conditions continuing. Expect the winds to back off during Saturday as the sun shines brightly over the entire weekend.

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PIZZA BOY ROBBED ON THE CENTRAL COAST

A 17-year-old pizza delivery driver has been grabbed by the throat and threatened with a knife, while at work on the Central Coast. It’s understood the young man was returning to his car, after knocking on the door of a home on Tuggerah Parade at Long Jetty at around 7:30 last night, when he was grabbed by a man. The man threatened the teenager, before making off with pizzas and cash. He is described as being of Caucasian appearance in his late 20s, around 180cm tall and with blonde stubble on his face. A woman, seen with the man, is described as being in her early 20s, with a slim build, dark long hair, and piercings on her face. Anyone with information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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CHARGES LAID FOLLOWING NEWCASTLE FRAUD INVESTIGATION

An 18-year-old man has been arrested, following an investigation into a number of reported break-in and fraud offences in the Wallsend area. Officers made the arrest at a home at Wallsend on Thursday evening, over the alleged offences which occurred between January and July this year. The man is expected to face court later today, over 8 charges including three counts of break & enter a house.

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FEMALE DELIVERY DRIVER ASSAULTED AT MOUNT HUTTON

A man is set to face court, charged over an alleged carjacking and the assault of a pizza delivery driver at Lake Macquarie. At around 7:30 last night, a 21-year-old female delivery driver was stopped by a man in the middle of Tennent Road at Mount Hutton. It’s understood he got into the car, grabbed the female driver around the neck, and demanded to be taken to nearby Warners Bay. Members of the public came to the woman’s aid, with a 27-year-old man arrested nearby, attempting to break into another vehicle. He was charged with multiple offences including wounding a police officer in execution of duty. An officer sustained minor leg injuries during the arrest.

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TURNBULL CALLS ON POPE TO SACK WILSON

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull today called on the Pope to sack Adelaide Archbishop, Philip Wilson. Wilson is the most senior Catholic in the world to be convicted for concealing child sex abuse. Earlier this month, a Newcastle Court sentenced the 67-year-old to 12 months detention… he plans on appealing the conviction. (AUDIO IN PARTS)

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