Council widens its net
COTTESLOE Council will widen its latest investigation into shark attack prevention measures to include detection buoys and underwater electromagnetic fields.
Mayor Phil Angers would like the net-like barriers that made Coogee and Sorrento beaches popular.
“I look at Coogee and you can see so many people there and people say, ‘I know I’m safe and the kids are safe’,” Mr Angers said at last week’s meeting.
He successfully asked councillors for the investigation after ongoing reports from lifesavers, residents and businesses of less swimmers and fewer customers in recent years.
Mr Angers said that a barrier would give people “peace of mind”, restore parents’ confidence in surf lifesaving and swimming classes, and could be removed for winter surfing.
“You don’t have to ask many people to know that the perception of shark attack is high,” Cr Lorraine Young said.
Cr Rod Thomas said the new investigation should include the latest available devices or products.
Chief executive Mat Humfrey said it would include the clever buoys detection system that relied on a text message warning sent to beachgoers.
Mr Humfrey will also seek government planning and environmental permits for a barrier so any potential installation is not delayed next summer.
A barrier has Cottesloe Surf Life Saving Club support, and proponents say it could be an interim measure before any proposed sea pool is built.
I don’t really fear sharks when I come to the beach. It’s the risk you take.”Jake Wood, Gidgegannup They put in a barrier at our Lighthouse Beach, but the problem at Ballina was the storm surges pushed it off the beach and it wasn’t effective, so they had to sort that out there,”Mick Wilson, Ballina, NSW Everything is trying to kills us here – snakes, spiders and sharks – so you’ve just got to be aware of your environment.”Katie Schmitz, Michigan, USA