The men and women who patrol beaches on the State’s far north coast have received a shark-spotting boost with extra safety equipment funded by the NSW Government, Minister for Agriculture Adam Marshall and Member for Tweed Geoff Provest announced today.
Mr Marshall said the Salt Surf Life Saving Club at Kingscliff had received a $10,000 grant to fund a range of additional safety tools, including an extra drone to keep a safe eye over their local beaches.
“Every time we enter the water there is an inherent risk but these additional safety measures funded through the NSW Government’s Shark Observation Grants program mean our beachgoers will be even safer,” Mr Marshall said.
“Drones are among the most effective detection and surveillance tools, and already we have them at 34 key beach locations up and down the State’s coastline, so this extra UAV for the Tweed area only adds to our resources.
“The Salt Surf Life Saving Club will also receive two radios, extra binoculars and a shelter for their brave men and women in red and yellow to patrol the beaches at Kingscliff.”
Member for Tweed Geoff Provest welcomed the additional equipment, and congratulated the Salt Surf Life Saving Club for applying for the funding through the NSW Government’s Shark Observation Grants program.
“This program means our lifeguards will have even greater resources to detect sharks and keep swimmers and surfers in the Tweed safe,” Mr Provest said.
“We’ve already seen shark-spotting drones literally act as lifesavers at our beaches on the far north coast, so I am thrilled to have another eye in the sky.
“Extra binoculars, radios and a new shelter on the beach means we are better prepared for shark interactions in our waters than ever before.
“Salt Surf Life Saving Club, along with other SLS clubs in the Tweed area, will also benefit from the upgrade of their UAV training package into online training, which means more pilots can be better equipped to keep our local swimmers safe.”
The Shark Observation Grants Program was in addition to the NSW Government’s $8 million 2020/21 Shark Program, which includes:
- Drone surveillance at 34 key swimming locations;
- 35 SMART drumlines in the Ballina and Richmond Valley Local Government Areas;
- 21 VR4G listening stations along the NSW coastline to detect and alert the community to the presence of tagged sharks;
- The continuation of the Shark Meshing Bather Protection program between Newcastle and Wollongong; and
- The SharkSmart app and community awareness and education programs.
More information on the NSW Government’s Shark Program 2020/21 is available from www.sharksmart.nsw.gov.au.