KEEPING US SAFE: Fraser Coast Community Support Group president Barry Stevens (left) with members (from left) Scott Robinson, Bob Shields (treasurer), Ray Stockdale and Troy Gerry keep the traffic flowing during events in the region.
KEEPING US SAFE: Fraser Coast Community Support Group president Barry Stevens (left) with members (from left) Scott Robinson, Bob Shields (treasurer), Ray Stockdale and Troy Gerry keep the traffic flowing during events in the region. Boni Holmes

Braving weather for our safety at events

THEY stand in the hot sun, redirect traffic, cop abuse, and meet some colourful characters in the Maryborough region.

You might not know them as the members of Fraser Coast Community Support Group but you would of seen them any one of Maryborough's events including the Heritage City Markets every Thursday.

They are your volunteer traffic controllers.

FCCSG president Barry Stevens said they meet a lot of people through the events.

Some of the events included Mary Poppins Festival, Relish, Pub Fest, Carols By Candlelight, and the Fraser Coast Technology Challenge.

Mr Stevens said they started off as SES and have been operating for about six years as their own corporation with about 25 members.

"It takes quite a bit on man-power each year to run - about 25 man-hours to run just the markets and about 3000 man-hours for the HPV," he said.

"We do most of our own repairs, services and modifications - members are former tool makers so they know how to stig weld and meg weld."

He said members were all getting older and they were looking for young blood.

"One of the hardest thing the group has is getting volunteers.

"It is very hard to get people to the CBD before 5am to close off the streets.

"Most of us are tired waiting for the retired to catch up."

 

Traffic controller Frank Papagna has a busy day on Saturday with huge crowds attending this year's Wide Bay and Fraser Coast Home Show and Caravan Camping 44 and Fishing Expo.
Members of the Fraser Coast Community Support Group have busy days with huge crowds attending this events like the Wide Bay and Fraser Coast Home Show and Caravan Camping 44 and Fishing Expo. Jocelyn Watts

No formal qualifications are needed to be a member.

"This is real life work skills - we can supply a volunteer with a step into something further down track.

"We have had members poached.

"We give them the work experience to better themselves.

"It is basically common sense and people skills."

Ages from 16 years were welcome to apply and members said they could also assist learner drivers get their driving hours up.

Fraser Coast Tourism Events are the group's biggest employer and most of their funds raised from the Thursday markets.

It costs about $10,000 over a three year period to keep their traffic control tickets up to date -"that's government regulations".

"We have to raise money for those and then the vehicles and the signs, and anything we may lose throughout the year," Mr Stevens said.

"At the end of the year if there is a surplus in funds the group discuss a beneficiary."

They have used the money to donate a pallet of dog food to the animal refuge, supplied hay bales for horses and a water tank valued at $4500 to the Aldershot Fire Station.

This year the group donated $1000 to the Maryborough Prostate Cancer Group.

Mr Stevens said the best thing was meeting people at the activities.

"We are part of those activities.

"Our members would be sadly missed if they didn't turn up - they are well known."

For more information or to find our how to become a member phone 0448 393 694 or email fccsg.inc@gmail.com.