Speeding Drivers Statistics

Did you know that between 2008 and 2012, there were 2176 serious casualties in road crashes involving speeding drivers and riders? As you can see from the graph below, a majority of these were caused in 60/km. Take care these holidays!

Speeding Drivers

University of the Sunshine Coast – Sponsorship

On Tuesday 8th April, the University of the Sunshine Coast held their annual Arts and Business Awards Ceremony. Each year we (STOLAW) sponsor the awards by offering a prize/s to outstanding students. This year the prize went to ‘Blake Crook’, who was the highest achieving student in course ACC220 Law of Business Associations. Congratulations Blake!

(Image provided by USC: Mr Paul Kusy of STOLAW and Blake Crook)


Divorce Statistics

Did you know many divorces occur to couples with children under 18 years old? However, the proportion of all divorces that involve children has declined since the mid 1960s from 65% in 1966 to 56% in 1990, 53% in 2000, and 48% in 2012. In 2012, 44834 children under 18 years experienced the divorce of their parents. (Source: aifs.gov.au)

Divorce Statistics

PHI Lusatia Park Pinot Noir 2011

PHI Pinot NoirHaving a bottle of the PHI Lusatia Park Pinot Noir 2011 fall into my hands courtesy of winning a bet with a mate (thanks Bloodlines), it was always going to have a certain sweetness on the palate.  But who could have guessed that such a highly perfumed nose could have carried such rose petal prettiness from the first sip through to a luxurious finale.

The PHI is the result of a partnership between the De Bertoli and Shelmerdine families who have hand cultivated single vineyards in Victoria’s Yarra Valley and allowed the aromatic Pinot Noir grapes to weave their unadulterated magic.  I happened to crack the PHI on a Sunday night when I had coincidentally concocted an Indian spiced lamb and spinach stirfry and it’s hard to imagine a better match – potpourian scents at the front and an aromatic cherry lusciousness across the middle.  The exposure to French Oak is understated to allow the gracefulness of the cool climate wine to carry the finish without a hint of self indulgence.

Good Pinot is seldom cheap and the PHI is no exception.  At close to $50 a bottle it’s not an everyday drinking proposition, but if you plan to have a wager with a mate over a game of football, this is as good as stake as you’ll find!

Our wine reviewer, Travis Schultz, is managing partner of Schultz Toomey O’Brien Lawyers and lover of fine food and wine

Drink Driving and the Risks!

Don't Drink & DriveEvidence shows that those who drink and drive have a significantly higher chance of being involved in an accident. Not only could you be endangering yourself but also other drivers/pedestrians on the road. Also, it is illegal to drink and drive!

Alcohol can affect people in different ways; however can still affect your driving.

The list below outlines the difficulties you may face if you drink alcohol and drive:

  • Judge the speed of your vehicle;
  • See and hear normally;
  • Judge the distance between your car and other vehicles;
  • Notice traffic lights, pedestrians and other hazards;
  • Concentrate on the task of driving;
  • Keep your balance, especially if you are riding a motorcycle;
  • Stay awake when you are driving; and
  • React appropriately to things going on around you, particularly if an unexpected hazard should suddenly appear.

(Source: drinkwise.org.au, 2014)

Research conducted by the Department of Transport has concluded that any blood alcohol concentration (BAC) over the legal limit of 0.05 “at least doubles your risk of car crash injury and your risk of involvement in a fatal crash rises sharply” (source: drinkwise.org.au, 2014)

The more alcohol you drink the higher your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) becomes. The below table shows how your driving ability changes with the increase in BAC.

BAC Level

First Aid Training by Maria Van Der Walt

First Aid TrainingEarlier this month, STO sent me to complete First Aid training with St John Ambulance.  I was pretty certain that I already knew as much as there is to know about First Aid. Firstly, I know not to move someone with a suspected spinal cord injury. Secondly, we have all seen (and are therefore able to carry out) CPR as performed on Grey’s Anatomy. As for any breaks, strains or sprains, I was pretty sure that an ice-pack would solve all problems. So with those handy tricks up my sleeve, I thought I was quite savvy as far as First Aid knowledge is concerned.

Nevertheless, despite my self-perceived abundance of First Aid knowledge, I went along to St John Ambulance, ready for a relaxed day of talking over the RICE (for those of you who skipped year 10 physical education, that’s “Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation”) miracle, cure-all strategy. As it turns out, I was in for a bit of a surprise; there was a lot I didn’t know about First Aid. Some of the more interesting facts I learnt were:

  1. That whilst you would apply ice to a box jelly-fish sting, a blue bottle sting requires the application of warm water.
  2. That when performing CPR on a baby, you should cover both its mouth and nose with your own mouth;
  3. That a patient suffering from a nose bleed should put their head forward, rather than backward.
  4. That the Heimlich manoeuvre, made famous by Hollywood, is not the recommended first aid for choking.
  5. That a person suffering from Hypothermia should not be exposed to radiant heat, such as a fire or a heater, and should not be given alcohol.

Most of the above seem like pretty extreme situations, and when, you might ask, will you be required to treat a box jellyfish sting or hypothermia from your office in the city? You’ll be pleased to hear that I also received training, and some pretty crucial information about more everyday situations, such as treating an asthma attack, burns, allergic reactions or heart attack and stroke victims.

During the course, I was also struck by the critical role a First Aider can play at the scene of an accident, whether it is in the workplace, on the road or in the home. The role of a First Aider is exactly as the name suggests – he or she is the very first point of contact for an injured person and can have a vital impact on the patient’s chances of recovery or survival. So I encourage you to visit the St John Ambulance Website, to find out more about the courses on offer. The website also has a ‘fact sheet database’ with basic First Aid treatment required for specific conditions, e.g. “Diabetic Emergency Fact Sheet.”  These are particularly handy to pass around the office, or to post in the kitchen if one of your co-workers suffers from condition such as Diabetes or Asthma.

Maria Van Der Walt, Litigation Lawyer, Schultz Toomey O’Brien Lawyers North Lakes

Online Gaming and Child Abuse

South Korean Online Gaming AddictiveThe online gaming industry in South Korea is becoming overly popular and addictive, to the point that a 22year old man was arrested for allegedly staving his 2 year old son to death.

Mr Chung was arrested after details of a two year old body was found, badly decomposed, in a rubbish bag near the city of Daegu.

The father of the boy spent most of his time at internet cafes and would go back home every two or three days to feed the boy. His wife had started working in a factory out of the city therefore, had left the unemployed husband to look after their child.

Mr Chung initially reported the child missing before confessing later that he had disposed of the body.

The police detective who has been working on the case has said that Mr Chung is likely to be charged with homicide and abandoning a body. (Source: news.com.au)

Read the full article on news.com.au.

If you need help with an addiction, there are many places that you can call with people that are willing to help, such as http://www.helplines.org.au/.

If you need assistance with a family situation, our Family Lawyers are here to helpvisit stolaw.com.au.


Meet Barbara Wade

Barbara WadePosition: Family Law Secretary

How long you have been working here for?  4yrs 3mths

How do you spend your time outside of work? I’m a big rugby league fan (go the Broncos!) and my youngest son plays for Redcliffe Dolphins so usually Sunday games each weekend. Also catching up with my other two children.

What is your favourite type of music?   Favourite Artists – Bryan Adams, Pink, Phil Collins and I must say I still love listening to Elvis and ABBA songs.

Meet Sarah Dibley

Sarah DibleyName: Sarah Jane Dibley
Position: Family Lawyer
How long you have been working here for? Nearly 6 years
How do you spend your time outside of work? I’m an animal lover – my favourite thing in the entire world is spending time with my little niece Frankie (she’s a 12 week old Labrador!). I also love spending time with friends and family and anything that involves food.
What is your favourite type of music? I love all music but I can’t go past a bit of pop. You’ll often find me driving to court bopping along to some Taylor Swift (don’t judge me).