Radschool Association Magazine - Vol 27
RESTORATION OF DFRDB WIDOWS [SPOUSE] PENSIONS
From the inception of the contributory DFRB/DFRDB Superannuation Schemes, until mid 1977, widows or widowers of Australian Defence Force Personnel who were killed in Australia or overseas were granted a pension from the contributory Defence Force Retirement and Death Benefit Fund. Until 1977, the Commonwealth Government Legislation required that if a spouse remarried the pension be cancelled.
In 1977 a Federal Government policy change meant that widows/widowers pensions were no longer cancelled on remarriage. However, those spouses who had lost their partners before this date did not have their pensions reinstated, unless there was a compelling case of financial hardship.
Following strong representation to and subsequent support from senior Government Ministers of the last Coalition Government [The Hon Mal Brough, The Hon Nic Minchin and The Hon Bruce Billson], the Pre 1977 DFRDB Spouse Pensions have been reinstated prospectively, on application, with effect 1 January 2008.
The term used by the present Government through Comsuper is ‘Reversionary Pensions’. Regrettably, it is a term that not many understand.
The reinstatement of the DFRDB Widows [Spouse] pensions needs wide dissemination to all Military Associations of the three Services and the wider community.
This initiative covers the widows of all Australian Defence Force personnel who contributed to the DFRB/DFRDB Scheme and who died as a result of natural causes, accidents, disease or in other circumstances in peace in Australia or overseas as well as all those who lost their lives on Active Service.
It is stressed that the reinstatement of DFRB/DFRDB pensions will only be made prospectively from the date of application.
If you want further information, contact Comsuper 1300 001 887 or you can email David Ferguson via email
Gov’t stimulus package.
In order to stimulate the economy, the Government will soon be sending most tax payers a windfall of $900 – however, the ATO and Centrelink have already received reports of hoax emails in relation to the forthcoming Tax Bonus and Household Stimulus Package.
If you receive an email claiming to be from the ATO or Centrelink that suggests you need to provide bank details to receive a bonus payment, DO NOT RESPOND!.
The ATO and Centrelink already have the information they need to process bonus payments to eligible recipients and will never ask people to provide personal information via email.
If you receive an email about the bonus payments, that you believe to be a hoax, you should report it to Centrelink on 1800 050 004.
A day in the life…... John Elliott
The story comes from my time in Katherine as a Flight Service Officer, some years after I had left the RAAF. It was a quiet Sunday afternoon and a trainee and myself were manning the board for the F.I.R. (flight information region of approx 40,000 sq miles around Katherine).
We received flight plan details from Mount Isa for a pilot who was taking off from Mt Isa to fly direct to a small airport up near Darwin in a light aircraft (probably something like a Cessna 180). The pilot nominated a SARTIME (Search and rescue time) for last light on that day. Warning Bell number One. Translated the above sentence means, "If I don’t call in by the time the sun goes down, please come out and search for me in the dark".
So I drew a line on an overhead map that roughly resembled the course that he should take and plotted some times where he might be if all things were going ok (Remember I said it was a quiet day).
Warning Bell Number Two, Sometime later in the afternoon, I get a call on the HF radio from the pilot to say he was unsure of his position. What to do asks the trainee, well I says, “let’s call him on VHF to see if we can raise him, if we can, it means he’s somewhere within range of our VHF transmitter, HF could reach him thousands of miles away. And, as he’s told us he’s unsure of his position, we’ll declare an Uncertainty Phase.”
An Uncertainty Phase is the first level (there are 3 in total) of the Search and Rescue procedure. Back then this was done by sending all the details via an SS message with 5 bells, on the teletype, to the Search and Rescue centre. It is declared when there is concern about the safety of an aircraft or its occupants and is used to alert the people responsible for conducting any subsequent emergency procedures that there could be a problem looming.
Then some time later, the radio springs to life again and the pilot says he is now low on fuel and still unsure of his position. What to do asks the trainee, well I says to him, I think we better go to the next stage, which is called the Alert Phase, once again, by sending another SS message, with 5 more bells to the SAR Centre. An Alert Phase is declared when there is apprehension about the safety of an aircraft and its occupants and alerts the SAR centre that things are ‘not good’.
Typical remote area Flight Service Unit (right)
A short time later, he calls again and says he is flying in cloud. What to do asks the trainee, well I says to him, he’s a VFR pilot, he's lost, he's on a Sartime, he's in cloud in a lighty, on his own so it's now time we now go for the big one and declare a Distress Phrase and hand the whole thing over to the SAR centre. A Distress Phrase is declared when there is reasonable certainty that the aircraft and its occupants are threatened by grave and imminent danger. Once this occurs, the SAR centre is activated and the “Search-master” takes control.
After a lot of work, and a bunch of Hail Mary’s from all concerned, the pilot did make it down to the ground in a manner from which he could walk away, unfortunately the area he picked was a flat plain with 4 ft high buffalo grass and 3.99 high ant hills, which did somewhat destroy the geometry of the aircraft.
Hot water destroying the planet
Allan George sent us this, it seems that the old hot water system that sits out on the back porch is slowly but surely destroying the planet. And, it must go!! Our Government has declared that from 2010 (next year) you will not be able to install an electric hot water system in a new house and from 2012 you won’t be able to replace a broken one with a new one, ie, there will be no more electric hot water systems.
Once this happens, the only hot water systems available to householders will be:-
• Heat pump
• Solar (electric or gas boosted.
You can read all about it HERE