When the bloke realised Bob was out there he shouted “I’m coming out mate, I’m coming out!” He did so, pushed past Bob and ran down the street. Sounds like the bloke wanted to avoid a physical confrontation.
Bob says he inadvertently left his car unlocked overnight, and suspects the bloke was just an opportunist. He also thinks he may have been affected in some way by drugs, alcohol, or something else.
I’d have to assume a pro could have hotwired a car in seconds, and not made enough noise to rouse people. Bob’s got an older Commodore — perhaps it doesn’t have an immobiliser, though it’s unclear if the bloke would have known that.
The police CSI team came and took fingerprints, but one would guess they won’t have much luck finding anybody… more likely they might pin that on him if they find him for something else.
I thought nobody would try and break into a car in a driveway, because the assumption would be that somebody’s home. The Lady Cop said you can never assume your car in your driveway is safe. Some people will notice an unlocked car and grab gold coins from the coin tray — you wouldn’t even know anything had happened.
Bob’s okay… he was just a little shaken. But his car will need some repairs.
It reminds me that although Bentleigh is a pretty safe, low-crime suburb, it’s good to take care. I sometimes leave my car open, windows down, doors unlocked if it’s a hot day and I’m expecting to go driving somewhere. The lesson I’ll take from this is to at least ensure the doors are deadlocked (which should also activate the immobiliser, hopefully preventing hotwiring) whenever the car is unattended.
- Interesting paper on the effectiveness of different types of car immobilisers — the basic conclusion seems to be that immobilisers effectively cut opportunistic theft, but are less effective in cutting professional theft
And now for something completely different: anti-pigeon defences.
It’s probably gone mostly unnoticed, but over the past few years, various methods to prevent them roosting have become commonplace.
In the case of Caulfield station, they’ve put in a lot of netting that cordons off parts of the platform roof areas, including the tops of the signs. (I haven’t checked if they’ve fitted the sign above, which is in the subway.)
Since Woolworths introduced gold coin deposits for trolleys at Bentleigh, you almost never see their trolleys abandoned in the streets. The same can’t be said for Coles Bentleigh, who appear to have some trolleys requiring a coin, and some not — I don’t understand the logic of this. On a walk last night, we passed three (non-deposit) Coles trolleys in quick succession on a single block of Jasper Road.
It seems pretty clear that (like the drink container deposits used in some states), coin deposits reduce the problem. I wonder why Coles don’t go ahead and implement it fully, especially in suburbs like Bentleigh where their major competitor already uses it.
This afternoon I heard steam train whistles, and after some digging, discovered it was R-class R707 headed down to Frankston, and that it would be coming back a little later.
Happy to take a break from the sorting out of paperwork that I’d been doing, I took a punt at the time it would pass back through Bentleigh, and headed down to find a vantage point, settling on a spot near Patterson station.
The train seemed to be coasting through here; it’s probably downhill from the Patterson Road bridge to the Brewer Road underpass.
You’ll note the people on the bridge; they were some of the (other?) trainspotters in attendance nearby.
In January 2010 we spotted a Google Streetview car passing the post office in Bentleigh.
Google Streetview finally updated its pictures, and it includes imagery from that day. Alas, it wasn’t shooting when the car passed us, but it did once it entered the nearby side street — that’s why you can see it turning. So while we’re in view, it’s only from a distance. Still, myself and the boys are recognisable — gotta like that!
A number of seats in the November state election were won and lost because of public transport — and the Frankston line in particular.
Statistics continue to show that the line is the worst for punctuality in Melbourne, with a 12 month average of just 69.6% of trains on-time within five minutes.
Perhaps it’s fitting that the official abbreviation for it is Fkn.
The impact was acknowledged by both sides of politics.
Bentleigh, Mordialloc, Carrum, Frankston: four seats through which the Frankston Line runs like an artery, four seats that bled Labor to political death.
[Former Bentleigh MP Rob Hudson]: “But it’s a big commuting suburb. Ten thousand people pass through Bentleigh railway station every day, and the Frankston Line . . . has had reliability issues that have been frustrating commuters.”
– The Australian, 4/12/2010
…it is a terribly performing line. It’s a line that’s enraged and upset people massively.
– David Davis, Liberal Party, election night during ABC TV’s coverage
On the Frankston line, we lost five seats. On the Lilydale line, if you count Mount Waverley to the south, we lost four.
– Nick Reece, ALP State Secretary, address to Melbourne Press Club, 15/12/2010
(Nick Reece appears to have included Prahran, the eastern end of which is served by the Frankston line.)
So new Bentleigh MP Elizabeth Miller must be acutely aware of public transport issues in the area. In fact she raised the topic of Southland Station last week in parliament.
During the election campaign I made a commitment to my electorate of Bentleigh to see a railway station built at Southland shopping centre. This is a piece of infrastructure that is long overdue, which is symbolic of the previous Labor government’s inability to provide for our growing community. I ask the minister to provide an update on this commitment and on when my electorate can expect construction of this railway station to commence.
Good to see.
It’s just a shame it’s been decided that her electorate office will be moving from its current spot, a few doors from Bentleigh Station, down to East Bentleigh — a long way from the station.
One would hope this doesn’t mean she’s running away from the issues, and that she realises how important improvements in public transport (not just trains, but also trams and buses) will be if she is to retain her marginal seat, and indeed if the government is to retain power in the next election.
I for one look forward to progress on Southland Station and other key promises, particularly the Public Transport Development Authority, which if done right will reform the poor transport planning that’s got us into the current mess.
Update Sunday 17/4: A notice in Elizabeth Miller’s office window now says the move is not happening just yet.