Yamba Station upgrade unlikely

THE Clarence police commander has responded to calls made this week for extra police to be stationed in Yamba.

Following the violent assault and attempted burglary at the Yamba Golf and Country Club on Monday and recent reports of increased crime in the town, MP Steve Cansdell and directors of the Yamba Golf and Country Club have called for the Yamba Police Station to be manned 24 hours a day.

Chief Inspector Darren Spooner said no commander would knock back extra police appointments, but no funding to increase numbers anywhere in the Clarence Valley was the reality.

“The only increase in police numbers we’ve had in the four years I’ve been here has been two police and that’s been in Yamba,” Chief Insp Spooner said.

According to the Chief Inspector, it would take an extra four policemen to man the Yamba station around-the-clock but it was out of his control to make that happen.

But if the Yamba Golf Club and Member for Clarence Steve Cansdell lobbied government for extra police, Chief Insp Spooner said he would welcome the extra numbers if representations were successful.

Mr Cansdell and supporters of a 24-hour station at Yamba are set to lobby.

Mr Cansdell said that in the next week he and supporters would launch a community campaign and petition to drum up support for the appointment of more police.

“But we’re going to need the whole Lower Clarence behind us on this one,” he said.

Meanwhile, Chief Insp Spooner said the police continued to work hard across the Clarence, responding to emergencies as quickly as possible.

“All police leave has been cancelled, so none of our people are on holiday,” Chief Insp Spooner said.

The Clarence-Coffs command has been working at capacity since December 26 with all local police on call, plus extra police brought in to cope with the influx of visitors to the region.

Police numbers will remain high until January 26.

Chief Insp Spooner said residents of the Lower Clarence should continue to call their local police station to report crime and not hang-up if their call was transferred to the Grafton station.

“We’ll take the call and it goes straight over the radio,” he said.

“But if people are in trouble they need to call Triple-0.”

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