Another two lifesaving observation towers have been unveiled at Mulalloo & Sorrento beaches this week, as part of a $750,000 Lotterywest grant.
- Significant funding was received by Surf Life Saving WA through a $750,000 Lotterywest Grant for the installation of 10 towers at select WA beaches;
- The towers at Mullaloo and Sorrento were made possible by a co-contribution to the purchase of the towers by the City of Joondalup.
According to Surf Life Saving WA General Manager Chris Peck, the elevated towers will greatly enhance surf lifesavers surveillance capabilities, enabling a whole of beach view by pushing the position of lifesavers above beach users and providing a greater field of vision.
“Surveillance is the cornerstone of what we do as lifesavers,” said Mr Peck.
“The implementation of these towers will not only increase our lifesavers ability to spot hazards in the water but significantly provide the opportunity to increase our patrolling footprint.”
“We know that, despite our constant calls for beachgoers to swim between the flags where they are most visible to surf lifesavers, not everyone adheres to this practice. The surf lifesaving mantra of “if we can’t see you, we can’t save you” is a message we have been sharing with the public for nearly a century and our ability to respond relies directly on this.”
Funded through a $750,000 Lotterywest grant, the non-permanent towers provide a nearly 3m high elevated surveillance platform providing trained personnel with improved surveillance perspectives and an operational station that will improve beach safety outcomes through enabling constant visual contact with the ocean and any beach user in need of assistance; and fast, easy access to the beach.
Mr Peck said that, while the use of observation towers occurs on beaches worldwide, these modular towers are locally designed and manufactured and will significantly increase the patrolling footprint of our lifesavers; their ability to consistently see a range of hazards such as rips, marine life and swimmers in distress; and to respond in a timely manner.
“The visibility of these towers, which we envisage will become a beacon of safety on these beaches, will also ensure that if the beach using public need assistance they know where to find our lifesavers quickly,” he said.
Surf Life Saving WA has worked closely with the City of Joondalup, who have made a co-contribution to the cost of the two new towers at Sorrento and Mullaloo beaches, to be utilised by the local surf life saving clubs and lifeguard services.
“The locations and roll out of these towers has relied on partnerships being in place and is a wonderful example of local communities working together to improve outcomes for their communities,” said Mr Peck.
Joondalup Mayor Albert Jacob said the City was proud to support its surf life saving clubs, which are an important part of the social fabric of the local community.
“The City of Joondalup was pleased to be a funding partner for this important project which will play a vital role in keeping our local beaches safer and accessible,” Mayor Jacob said.
“The City appreciates greatly the work of our surf life saving clubs and all of the volunteers who patrol our beaches. The invaluable service they provide, as well as the City’s commitment to funding a paid professional lifeguard service, allows our residents and visitors to safely enjoy the wonderful ocean and pristine coastline that we are lucky enough to have in our City.”
Towers have already been installed at Port Bouvard; Mandurah; City Beach; and Scarborough, with an additional four locations to be completed shortly.
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