Boats won?t have a bar of Evans



FISHERMAN Stuart Hocking said he would still be living in Evans Head if the river bar wasn't so dangerous.

Instead, after 20 years in the town, he and his family moved to Sydney in the late 1990s, and he now uses Southport or Mooloolaba to unload his tuna boat.

Mr Hocking said he always used to unload at Evans Head, but it was now too dangerous.

"And if you do come in and the conditions are adverse, you can't get back out to go to work," he said.

In town checking out the uncrossable bar, Mr Hocking said it showed the futility of dredging without removing the sand.

He suggested resurrecting the fluidiser idea where sand was agitated, to be flushed out with the tide.

"The trial was definitely a success. I don't know why they canned it," he said.

Chairman of the Evans Head Fishing Co-op, Neil Black, said the bar was losing them business.

He said yachts cruising the coast used to dock at Evans to refuel and relax for a few days.

"But they're not coming any more, because they're worried about hitting the bar and tipping over, or getting stuck here," he said.

Mr Black said fishermen working out of the port could only cross at high tide, which meant they were forced to stay out for days at a time.

"Great family life," he said. "I'm selling my boat and getting out, because of all-round pressure. And the bar's not helping. I'm sick of it."



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