Surf Patrol Season Starts - 22nd September 2017
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volunteer surf lifesavers prepare to raise the red
and yellow flags on a new patrol season from tomorrow,
a report has been released that reinforces the importance
of beach safety ahead of what is anticipated to be
a very busy season on NSW beaches.
2017 Surf Life Saving NSW Coastal Safety Report comprehensively
reviews and assesses the current and historical coastal
drowning data as well as gives an overview of the
states Surf Life Saving assets and capability.
2016/17, some key findings include:
total coastal drownings for the year numbered 31,
down from a record-high of 53 the previous year, there
was a big spike in drownings at the height of summer.
Overwhelmingly males continue to represent the majority
of drowning deaths 90%
29% of people who drowned were aged 20-29.
42% of people drowned while swimming, predominantly
as a result of being caught in rip currents, and 19%
died while rock fishing.
is concerning that almost 70% of drownings occurred
more than 5km from a patrolled location, suggesting
the swim between the flags message is not being heeded
by many people.
report was presented to the NSW Premier The Hon Gladys
Berejiklian MP by SLSNSW CEO Mr Steven Pearce ASFM
as part of the annual Raising the Flags ceremony,
held this year at Sydneys Maroubra Beach on
report and its findings will play an important role
in our understanding of what it happening on the NSW
coastline and will help us better utilise our assets
and capabilities as we move into the season ahead,
said Mr Pearce.
Beach was sadly the location of a number of tragedies
last season, including the drowning of two Nepalese
students and a 15-year old boy who remained missing
for several days over the Christmas period.
the Premier in Raising the Flags for the new season
was the Member for Coogee Bruce Notley-Smith as well
as representatives from local and federal government,
the emergency services sector, and of course the Surf
Life Saving community, volunteers from Maroubra SLSC
and Maroubra Nippers.
were treated to an impressive rescue demonstration
of lifesaving equipment on the day featuring jetskis,
rescue craft, Westpac Little Ripper UAVs, and a flyover
by the Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter.
season will see surf lifesavers expand their use of
drones , including the new shark algorithm technology
SharkSpotter, providing innovative ways to keep the
community safe and providing more eyes, in more places,
Life Saving NSW President David Murray is looking
forward to the season ahead.
tomorrow when patrols get underway I know that every
single surf lifesaver patrolling throughout the state
will be doing their best to keep beachgoers safe,
Mr Murray said.
proud record of zero drowning deaths between the red
and yellow flags is something we cherish. This is
why we continue to urge everyone to only swim at a
patrolled location, he concluded.
surf lifesavers will be patrolling NSW beaches each
weekend and public holiday from Saturday 23 September
2017 until Wednesday 25 April 2018.
2017 NSW Coastal Safety Report can be viewed here.
22 Sep 2017
Life Saving New South Wales)