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A Friday Note - 25 November 2016

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Dear all

The weather turned on the charm for cricket fans watching the opening day of the Test at our spectacular Adelaide Oval. Temps in the high 20s are expected for days 4 and 5, let’s hope the match goes the distance!


It has been a devastating period on our roads with the loss of four young lives in a single vehicle crash in the South East. Such tragedies have a profound effect on the families and the wider community.

How do we compare with other states on road safety? The challenge is there to see what else we can do to save lives and avoid serious injury. 

Safety was high on the agenda as rail industry authorities gathered in Adelaide this week. I addressed the National Track Worker Safety Forum, an important opportunity to discuss projects and initiatives that aim to further increase safety standards across the board. Other talks focused on ways that investment in railways can stimulate economic growth and how technological advances will  impact the future of rail, including improvements in signalling systems. We will keep working closely and collaboratively with industry, the workforce and other stakeholders.


Country Cabinet met Sunday, Monday and Tuesday in Whyalla, Roxby Downs and Coober Pedy. These are intense events with lots of meetings with local people. Seeing senior Cabinet Ministers with their communities is a privilege, as was driving back from Roxby and stopping to have a chat with our road crews. Watching our staff and contractors building our nation is always impressive.


It is White Ribbon Day and, as an accredited White Ribbon workplace, DPTI is proud to be involved in the events and conversations taking place today and into the future. This video captures what it means to our department.  


Thank you to staff who have completed the Employee Climate and Culture Survey 2016. For those who haven’t, I encourage you to do so. The cut-off is Friday 9 December. Make your opinion count. 


The six Indonesians we hosted under the Australia-Indonesia Youth Exchange Program are enjoying the final days of their stay in South Australia, with visits to the Riverland and Port Elliot. The feedback from staff about the benefit of the exchange has been terrific. Hear from our guests about their experience and see some of their stunning cultural performances here.


If you’re looking for a good read, you might want to consider the Outback Communities Authority’s historical record – From the Outback to the Battlefront. Recently launched in Blinman, the book documents the service history of outback South Australian communities during various theatres of battle around the world.


Our department has received high praise from the Chief Executive of the South Australian Tourism Commission for our continued success at ferrying cruise ship passengers between Outer Harbor and Adelaide. Rodney Harrex says helpful and friendly DPTI staff are creating a positive first impression for visitors. Thank you to Dino Cappello, Julie Whitehead and Mimma Voulgarakis who guide our fantastic frontline staff alongside Robert Stopp’s Rail Operations team including a special mention to James Jeffries, and Karl Mortimer’s operational planners. Wilson Security also plays a key role.

Congratulations to one of our project trainees, Crispian Fraser, who passed his P1 driver’s licence test this week.

The licence will be invaluable to Crispian while he works with us and is another example of the incredible work being done by the On the Right Track team to help get Aboriginal people in remote communities behind the wheel safely.

Marine Safety Officer Steven Roberts is to be commended for rescuing a man who was stranded on an island on the River Murray near Renmark recently. The man had become exhausted while attempting to paddle an inflatable boat against the strong currents. Steven negotiated his patrol boat through tricky currents and snags to reach the island, where a very tired and appreciative boatie was happy to climb aboard. It serves as a valuable reminder about the need for extra caution as the Murray experiences high flows. Read our safety tips here.

Well done to all of the winners from the 2016 South Australian Sports Institute (SASI) awards presentation. Anna Meares and Kyle Chalmers took out top honours, providing further inspiration for our next generation of athletes. More here.

Have a good weekend

Michael Deegan