My Beach

The first of 10 new lifesaving observation towers set to hit WA beaches was unveiled at City Beach yesterday morning as Surf Life Saving WA looks to boost their operational and surveillance capabilities with the custom designed towers.

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 an elevated surveillance platform, with the lifesavers deck nearly 3 metres high, 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 local councils and surf life saving clubs, who will make a co-contribution to the purchase cost of the towers, demonstrating the power of local community partnerships.

“The locations and roll out of these first 10 towers has relied on these partnerships being in place and is a wonderful example of local communities working together to improve outcomes for their communities,” said Mr Peck.

Lotterywest’s Chief Executive Officer Susan Hunt PSM said that the organisation was proud to support the addition of ten lifesaving observation towers throughout the State, commending Surf Life Saving WA for being at the forefront of beach safety.

“The observation towers will improve the delivery of vital lifesaving and patrol services across our beaches,” Ms Hunt said.

“This project is a great milestone in creating a safer coastal environment for the WA community.”

It is expected that all ten of the surveillance towers will be installed by the start of summer.

Tower locations are as follows;

Bunbury City Beach Coogee Mandurah Mullaloo
Port Bouvard Scarborough Secret Harbour Sorrento Yanchep