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Newcastle News

NEW COMFORT FOR DIALYSIS PATIENTS

Dialysis patients who are forced to sit for long periods during treatment are benefiting from a donation designed to make life a little easier. The Lions Club has stepped in where the state government wouldn’t, to provide the comfort of new chairs. These patients spend up to six hours a day, three days a week connected to a machine simply to stay alive. Their kidneys don’t work, and so Dialysis is needed to purify the blood. Spending all that time sitting down can be very uncomfortable, especially for the elderly, prompting the Lions Club to donate 10 motorised chairs at a cost of $50,000, to replace the old manually operated ones. Hunter New England Health Spokesperson Kelly Adams says “the chairs are fully automated so the patients can now adjust their back rests and leg rests, instead of waiting for …

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GLOBAL EXPANSION FOR BRADKEN

A Newcastle-based heavy engineering firm is defying global financial jitters by expanding its operations overseas. Bradken is trying to raise more than $100-million to take full ownership of a large American foundry group. The Newcastle based Bradken empire is becoming so global that it’s no surprise to find CEO Brian Hodges picking up a copy of the China Daily instead of the Newcastle paper.

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NEW CURFEW

The 1am curfew and 3am closing time have been abolished for nine Newcastle pubs. A full bench of the licensing court has extended the venues’ trading hours by 30 minutes, after licensees made a deal with police.

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SEVERED HAND ON ICE

Paramedics put a man’s hand on ice after it was almost completely severed in an accident at a Gloucester timber mill. The Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service says the 41 year old’s hand was hanging by a flap of skin after it was caught in a machine saw. During the flight to Sydney’s Royal North Shore hospital, the helicopter stopped in Newcastle to pick up bags of ice, which were used to preserve the hand. Efforts are underway to re-attach it using delicate micro surgery.

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PORT’S FUTURE?

Australia’s biggest coal miners have made an offer to the state government to privately fund a $2.5-billion expansion of the Port of Newcastle. Meanwhile former premier, Nick Greiner, has handed his report to the Ports Minister detailing a new model for coal companies to gain access to the Newcastle Harbour loaders.

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TRUCKS STOP

The Hunter’s trucking industry has ground to a halt, with hundreds of drivers stopping work. They’re the latest group to park their rigs in opposition to federal government restrictions on the hours they can work.

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NEIGHBOURHOOD FEUD TURNS FIREY

A Metford family is lucky to be alive after a verandah on their home was set on fire last night, during a neighbourhood feud. A 21-year-old man has been charged with malicious damage with intent to endanger lives and assault. He was refused bail by Maitland Local Court this morning. Police claim he doused the home on Willow Drive with fuel at 11pm, before setting it alight, while a number of people including young children were inside.

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