Gamblers feed thousands into pokies

Narromine gamblers are feeding $78,723 into poker machines each day or $11.54 for each one of its 6822 residents.

Narromine’s annual pokie gambling tab is $28,733,895.

The figures were contained in a report from the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority.

The report found that in the Bogan Shire gamblers were feeding $34,506 into poker machines every day of the year.

That is $11.28 a day for every one of the 3059 residents of the Shire.

The latest official figures have revealed the annual turnover for gaming machines in clubs and hotels in the Bogan Shire was $12,594,690 in 2015-2016.

The turnover figure includes amounts won on the pokies and then re-invested into the machines.

The report showed less was gambled per head in Bogan Shire than in other Orana areas.

Lifeline Central West executive director Alex Ferguson said problem gamblers made up a small percentage but their debts had serious consequences.

Mr Ferguson said people were seeking counselling through Lifeline due to gambling debts.

“It is a major problem, gambling addiction, because when it strikes it invariably affects not only the gambler but the family around that person,” he said.

“When it does strike it is devastating.

“The debts can be significant, they have the ability to affect the way people live.”

Mr Ferguson said a new problem was the rise in online gambling.

“Of far greater concern in this day and age is the gambling online, sports betting in particular,” he said.

“It has proliferated over the past five to seven years.”

For information or support call the Gambling Help line 1800 858 858.

In Wellington, $12.87 per person per day goes into the pokies.

The population is 9073 and the daily spend is $116,754. Gamblers outlay $42,615,210 on the machines in a year.

Topping the spend per person per day on pokies is Dubbo where the outlay is $22.17 per head of population. That totals $929,593 a day or $339.3 million a year.

Annual figures for other centres included: Orange $292.4 million, Bathurst $239.5 million, Lithgow $128.6 million and Parkes $80.6 million.

The Mudgee district had the lowest wagering per person per day at $1.56 followed by Cabonne $4.06, Oberon $7.28, Cowra $12.75. Parkes was at $14.37 and Forbes $17.11.

  • Gambling Help line 1800 858 858