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Texting While Driving Will Cost You Six Demerit Points In NSW This Christmas

To paraphrase those old road safety ads, if you text and drive, you’re a bloody idiot. Thankfully, the punishment for this crime is about to be doubled in NSW. During this year’s holiday period, anyone caught using their phone behind the wheel in NSW will receive six demerit points on their licence — up from the current penalty of three points. This means you will effectively lose half your full licence in one fell swoop. Hope that Facebook status update was worth it.

Ask LH: Are Police Allowed To Harass Me On My Property?

Dear Lifehacker, Last night, I was driving home at 3am on a provisional licence. As I entered my driveway the police pulled up and started grilling me about why I was driving outside of the P plate curfew. I have an exemption for work which I immediately showed to them. They subsequently couldn’t fine me for driving after hours, but then they noticed my back P plate had fallen down (it fell down as I went over the bump in my driveway). So they fined me for that instead. Was just wondering if what they did was allowed, coming onto my property and all that?

Ask LH: Do I Need To Apply For A New Licence After My DUI Suspension?

Dear Lifehacker, I recently copped a 30-day driving suspension for a DUI in Queensland while on a road trip to Western Australia where I’m staying for work. Does my suspension also apply here in WA or can I still drive? My other question is when my suspension is over. Can I just start driving again, or do I need to pay for another licence? (The one I have expires in 2017.)

Be Wary When Airlines Offer You A Replacement Suitcase

If your suitcase gets damaged at the airport, it’s not uncommon for staff to offer an on-the-spot replacement. It turns out this can be a bad idea. Earlier today, a Sydney Airport customer was accidentally given a replacement bag that contained 230 grams of plastic explosives. Oops.

Warning: Carrying Garden Seeds Can Get You Searched For Drugs

Last night, I was subjected to an extensive drug search at Sydney’s central station after a sniffer dog plucked me out of the crowd. Over the next 20 minutes, I was made to answer questions, hand over my licence, take off my shoes, empty the contents of my bag and stand spreadeagled against a wall while a police officer patted me down; all in full view of the public. Eventually, they found what had set the dog off — a bag of novelty garden seeds. No really.

Ask LH: What Should I Do If I Get Robbed?

Dear Lifehacker, A friend of mine recently had his house robbed, and it got me thinking: What should I do if I get robbed? Who should I call first, and how should I go about getting made whole again?

Briefly: US Spy Fortresses Exposed, Man Of Steel Reviewed, Police Install 4000 Secret Speed Cameras

Brief news items of note for Lifehacker readers including: Queensland approves new ‘covert’ speed camera locations, Man of Steel reviewed, inside America’s secret spy buildings.

Briefly: Clueful Lands On Android, Australian Police Test 3D Printed Firearms, Crazy GoPro Cliff Dive Video

Brief news items of note for Lifehacker readers including: Clueful security app comes to Android, get a Nexus 7 tablet for $206, extreme stuntman drives snow mobile off cliff and films it.

Should Street Windscreen Washers Be Banned?

Victorian police are cracking down on street windscreen washers who operate on city intersections due to safety concerns, Courier Mail reports. Should these squeegee-totting panhandlers be banned altogether?

Do You Have A Right To Silence In Australia?

You’ve just been pulled over by the cops, smoking gun in your hand, blood stains all over your clothes and a bag full of shiny diamonds on your passenger seat. Are you actually obliged to say anything to the local constabulary?

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