ABC Local Radio

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Rockhampton seem to be struggling this afternoon. A few problems with live crosses, and just then forgetting to fire off the SEWS before reading out an emergency warning

Clearly it’s not something they’re used to - others may attest to this, but information on bushfires tend to change more quickly than, say, a cyclone which can be drawn out over a number of hours as it approaches.


To be fair, as you point out, bush fires are a moving feast of information - and some of the presenters / producers likely haven’t been involved in an event like this before.

Most programs would likely be manned by just the one presenter and one producer - maybe an extra support person if they are lucky. So it would be a very busy job in these sorts of situations.


Most definitely. It’s hardly the fault of individuals, it’s a resource and training issue that will hopefully be adressed as these events become more frequent


Does Queensland get the bushfires and emergency broadcasting like this regularly? I’d imagine Victoria and I guess NSW would. Tasmania seems to have a couple of times each year where they need to break out into it with often at least once a year where they’ll switch to the near full time emergency broadcasting. They also can split so North Tas is on emergency and Hobart still has normal programming. I remember one time a few years ago where a fire escalated quite quickly mid-afternoon in the north of the state and the ABC were in emergency broadcast until around 2-3am with the afternoons presenter.


In Victoria there have been a couple of bushfire broadcasts each summer. If the fires occurred on weekends the ABC would break into regular programming (usually Grandstand). However it did not split the signal, that meant a fire update in (say) Gippsland could still be heard on Melbourne.


I defer to the Queenslanders here, but you do get rolling coverage for cyclones on a similar scale


Usually get the full treatment for cyclones and from what I can remember the floods that usually come once every couple of years or so.


Queensland doesn’t normally get such high temps with low humidity like they have been. The humidity isn’t a good conductor for fire, which is why they aren’t common there.

I agree with @stmookeyj027 in that it’s cyclones they are normally on the lookout for up there, not bushfires.


Often updates continue on 774 but programming will be local. The south west fires last March went to local programming.


ABC Radio will have a live call of tonight’s boxing bout between Jeff Horn and Anthony Mundine at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium on Grandstand Digital. Working on the coverage is Corbin Middlemas and boxing trainer Billy Hussein.


Yes correct. The low humidity is quite rare in Queensland in summer so bush fires aren’t as common as Vic and SA. Of course it does happen from time to time in late Spring before the humidity kicks in.

Regardless the cyclone and flood coverage is very common across the state.


ABC podcast Trace leads to reopening of 38 year old cold case by Victorian coroner

In an Australian first, a decades old cold case investigation will be re-opened following revelations uncovered in the ABC’s first true-crime podcast Trace .
The decision by the Victorian Coroner to reopen the investigation into the murder of Melbourne bookshop owner Maria James comes after Trace exposed new information about the unsolved case, including revelations about possible suspects and a forensics bungle which meant Police never had the killer’s DNA to begin with.

Ms James was stabbed to death in the back of her Melbourne bookshop in June 1980.

Journalist and host Rachael Brown started reviewing the case almost three years ago. Tip-offs and fresh leads from listeners have played a crucial role in today’s development.

She says this shows the power of journalism to bring about change, and the value of the podcast format.

“It is a powerful and serious reminder that Trace is telling the story of real people and has real-life implications. The audience mobilisation we’ve had around this podcast is unlike anything we’ve seen before.

“The intimacy of the podcast genre affords the respect, consideration and anonymity required when confronting these difficult stories, which is tricky or impossible to achieve through other genres.”
Victoria Police has also launched its own official review of the cold case.

Former detective Ron Iddles commended Trace for its role in reopening the investigation. “Historically, Victoria Police has relied on rewards and some selected media [for case breakthroughs],” he told ABC NEWS. “But the world is changing and when a podcast gets (millions of) downloads that is a new initiative that needs to be seriously looked at as a way of solving unsolved cases.”

A new episode of Trace will be released early next week. All episodes of the original podcast are available on the free ABC listen app , Apple Podcasts **, or wherever you get your favourite podcasts.


They didn’t need to do much commentating.

Spot on.

Dry lightning, weather created by fires themselves is what increases the noise floor of AM reception, often meaning it’s useless.


ABC announces 2019 line-ups for Local and Regional Radio

ABC Radio’s key programs and presenters return in 2019 in an unchanged line-up for its Local Radio stations in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and its Regional network, while ABC RN introduces several new programs and voices to next year’s schedule.

Local Radio in the Capital Cities

ABC Local Radio’s double-header breakfast presentations, introduced at the beginning of the year, return with Sami Shah and Jacinta Parsons hosting in Melbourne and Robbie Buck and Wendy Harmer in Sydney.

At ABC Radio Adelaide, Breakfast presenter Ali Clarke and Mornings presenter David Bevan will continue to co-host their shared slot from 8.30am – 9.00am.

In Brisbane, Loretta Ryan joins Breakfast presenter Craig Zonca as Rebecca Levingston moves to a new role in Mornings.

Drive presenters remain unchanged in five capital cities with Richard Glover presenting in Sydney; Raf Epstein in Melbourne; Steve Austin in Brisbane; Jules Schiller in Adelaide and Geoff Hutchinson in Perth.

All the regular current affairs programs return in 2019 with 30-minute editions of AM at 8.00am, The World Today at midday and PM at 6.30pm.

Conversations is back with presenters Richard Fidler and Sarah Kanowski being joined for part of the year by ABC RN presenter, Hamish McDonald. An Myf Warhurst returns to the middle of the day, along with some guest co-presenters, in all capital cities except Perth and Hobart.

Philip Clarke and Sarah Macdonald share presenting duties once again to end weeknights with Nightlife.

Local Radio’s biggest line-up changes are reserved for ABC Radio Perth and ABC Radio Darwin with some changes in Canberra as well.

Next year, ABC Radio Darwin will introduce new presenters in all its daytime, evening and weekend slots. Jo Laverty returns home to take over as the station’s new Breakfast presenter and Adam Steer moves into Mornings. Mikaela Simpson is new to Afternoons followed by new Drive presenter, Liz Trevaskis, who takes over the program in March. Georgia Hitch will present Drive for the first two months of the year. Richard Margetson is new to Evenings and Joel Spry and Jess Ong share hosting duties on Weekends.

ABC Radio Perth has several new presenters in 2019, starting with Barry Nicholls who will present an early-bird statewide Breakfast show from 4am – 6am. Russell Woolf and Nadia Mitsopoulos take over the Perth Breakfast slot from 6am – 10am and Jessica Strutt presents the morning Focus. Afternoons sees the extension of Gillian O’Shaughnessy’s program starting at 12.30pm and Christine Layton is the station’s new Saturday Breakfast host.

ABC Radio Canberra sees changes to the latter part of the day with former Perth Breakfast presenter, Paula Kruger joining the Afternoons program and Anna Vidot moving to Drive.

ABC Radio Hobart will announce its 2019 line-up in several weeks.

A full list of ABC Capital City station line-ups can be found below.

Regional Radio

All of ABC’s key Regional programs return in 2019 including the seven state-based Country Hour editions and the national regional current affairs program Australia Wide, presented by Sinead Mangin weekdays at 6.30 pm. The program will continue its repeat on RN and Radio Australia weekdays at 7.30 pm.

In South Australia, Narelle Graham will present the regional Drive program from 4.00pm – 6.00pm.

ABC Great Southern’s Breakfast presenter, Andrew Collins, takes over WA’s statewide Drive program out of Albany and in Newcastle, Jenny Marchant and Dan Cox team up to present a new double-header Breakfast show. Former Newcastle Breakfast presenter, Aaron Kearney returns to the station to present Drive and after 10 successful years, the station’s weekend Treasure Hunter will move to a limited season to make way for a new show to be announced in 2019.

Acting Director of ABC Regional & Local, Judith Whelan, said 2019 was about building on the changes made at the start of the year and consolidating the gains achieved in audience share and reach in recent surveys.

“We saw significant change to our programs and line-ups in 2018. We’ve worked hard to bed in those changes and are now seeing a positive response from our audiences. Next year will be about playing to our strengths – getting our programs into the local and regional communities and collaborating with our colleagues in ABC Television and ABC News on the big national stories such as Australia Day, ANZAC Day and the Federal Election to give Australians the full story as only the ABC can.”


Program Presenter(s)

Overnights Trevor Chappell/Rod Quinn
Breakfast Robbie Buck/Wendy Harmer
Mornings (Focus) Cassie McCullagh
Conversations Richard Fidler/Sarah Kanowski/Hamish McDonald
Myf Warhurst Myf Warhurst
Afternoons James Valentine
Drive Richard Glover
Evenings Chris Bath
Nightlife Philip Clarke/Sarah McDonald
Weekends Simon Marnie

Overnights Trevor Chappell/Rod Quinn
Breakfast Jacinta Parsons/Sami Shah
Mornings Jon Faine
Conversations Jon Faine
Myf Warhurst Myf Warhurst
Afternoons Richelle Hunt
Drive Raf Epstein
Evenings David Astle
Nightlife Philip Clarke/Sarah McDonald
Weekends Libbi Gorr

Overnights Trevor Chappell/Rod Quinn
Breakfast Craig Zonca/Loretta Ryan
Mornings (Focus) Rebecca Levingston
Conversations Richard Fidler/Sarah Kanowski/Hamish McDonald
Myf Warhurst Myf Warhurst
Afternoons Katherine Feeney
Drive Steve Austin
Evenings Kelly Higgins-Devine
Nightlife Philip Clarke/Sarah McDonald
Weekends Emma Griffiths

Overnights Trevor Chappell/Rod Quinn
Breakfast Ali Clarke
Mornings David Bevan
Conversations Richard Fidler/Sarah Kanowski/Hamish McDonald
Myf Warhurst Myf Warhurst
Afternoons Sonia Feldhoff
Drive Jules Schiller
Evenings Peter Goers
Nightlife Philip Clarke/Sarah McDonald
Weekends Deb Tribe

Early Breakfast Barry Nicholls
Breakfast Nadia Mitsopoulos/Russell Woolf
Mornings Jessica Strutt
Conversations Richard Fidler/Sarah Kanowski/Hamish McDonald
Afternoons Gillian O’Shaughnessy
Drive Geoff Hutchison
Nightlife Philip Clarke/Sarah McDonald
Saturday Breakfast Christine Layton

Overnights Trevor Chappell/Rod Quinn
Breakfast Dan Bourchier
Mornings Adam Shirley
Conversations Richard Fidler/Sarah Kanowski/Hamish McDonald
Myf Warhurst Myf Warhurst
Afternoons Paula Kruger
Drive Anna Vidot
Evenings Chris Bath
Nightlife Philip Clarke/Sarah McDonald
Weekends Greg Bayliss/Lish Fejer

Overnights Trevor Chappell/Rod Quinn
Breakfast Jo Laverty
Mornings Adam Steer
Conversations Richard Fidler/Sarah Kanowski/Hamish McDonald
Myf Warhurst Myf Warhurst
Afternoons Mikaela Simpson
Drive Georgia Hitch (until March)/Liz Trevaskis
Evenings Richard Margetson
Nightlife Philip Clarke/Sarah McDonald
Weekends Joel Spry (Saturdays)/Jess Ong (Sundays)


Really annoyed they aren’t dumping Myf’s awful 12.30 show. It’s so out of place and ignoring the point of LOCAL radio.


Did Perth and Hobart have it this year? There’s some interesting topics and guests, but other weird choices. It doesn’t know what it wants to be, especially when the following program (at least in Melbourne) has similar guests and content.


Not in Hobart, the country hour is on at that time in Hobart and North Tas followed by PM and then afternoons at 1:30.


Yes, they need to admit their error and stop the non news networking immediately.

Michael Mason, head of radio who is retiring, spoke this week to Steve Austin. Michael said if more cuts were required to local radio, it’d result in more networking.

They’ve already begun this with The Conversation Hour and the Myf mess.

Not good enough from “our” ABC.


Interesting, he retained it.

It was foreshadowed when they announced the non performing line ups late last year that 2018 would be the last for Faine’s version.


You’re absolutely right. Moreso that the show is awful. Really awful.

Totally out of place on local radio, a drag on the ratings and as you say taking time away from local product.