Magnificent contribution for our volunteers
The bushfire crisis has certainly brought to the public's attention the magnificent contribution made by all our emergency service teams and the thousands of volunteers who have worked tirelessly dealing with these bushfires.
These people are the unsung heroes of local communities, coming from all walks of life and being prepared to put their lives on the line for their fellow man.
Although they don't seek recognition, I think it's important they are acknowledged for their efforts in helping save lives as well as protect properties.
However, there is still a long way to go before this period of unprecedented natural disaster is over. In reality, the only thing that will end the bushfire threat is rain.
The true enormity of the situation will no doubt become clearer over coming weeks and months and the NSW Government will monitor the situation and do all it can to help communities impacted by this tragedy.
In the meantime, farmers are being urged to register for help to deal with significant stock losses and agricultural damage from bushfires.
The NSW Department of Primary Industries and Local Land Services are providing assistance to fire affected landholders with emergency fodder and water, animal care, livestock or animal assessment, and where necessary euthanasia and burial.
Producers can report stock losses and infrastructure damage, or request animal assessment, or emergency fodder or water for stock, by calling the Agricultural and Animal Services Hotline on 1800 814 647.
People without phone access can send a direct message via the NSW DPI Facebook page.
Coaches replace some NSW trainlink services
Road coaches will replace some NSW TrainLink services until further notice due to the bushfires.
Unfortunately the bushfires damaged sections of track and signalling structures along the Western Line rail corridor.
It is important we put the safety of customers and crew first, which is why the decision has been made to replace all Western regional rail services until repairs are complete.
Trains are not running between Lithgow and Mt Victoria, which means the Dubbo to Sydney XPT and the Broken Hill to Sydney EXPL service will be road coaches for the duration of the journey to ensure continuity of service.
Bathurst customers will use buses to Mt Victoria where they will join electric services to Sydney. There will also be a bus service between Lithgow and Mt Victoria.
Customers are urged to plan ahead, allow extra time for their journey and if at all possible to delay non-essential travel.
To stay up-to-date with road closures, download the Live Traffic app or visit www.livetraffic.com.
New New Year's resolution
Through organ donation, transplant recipients are gifted a second chance at life - having an active role within their family, returning to work and planning for a future.
In 2018, nine out of ten families agreed to organ donation proceeding when their loved one was a registered donor. This dropped to five out of ten when their loved one was not registered and the family had no prior knowledge of their wishes.
With around 1,500 Australians currently wait listed for a transplant, and a further 11,000 on dialysis, this is a way that people can make a significant difference to the lives of fellow Australians.
If you're still looking for a resolution for the New Year, signing up. Go to donatelife.gov.au.