Cameras set to watch over Airlie Beach CBD
THE Airlie Beach main street and lagoon are set to become a safer place thanks to more than $725,000 in federal funding.
The move will see 84 highdefinition CCTV cameras installed in strategic locations around town, with Whitsunday Police able to keep an eye on things from their station.
Minister for Justice Michael Keenan visited the region on Friday to make the announcement.
“We know that CCTV is very useful infrastructure to deter crime,” he said.
“It can deter people from doing the wrong thing in the first place when they know they are being watched on CCTV, but it also helps police to do their job if someone actually has committed a crime.”
Once installed, 52 cameras will keep watch on the main street, while 32 will cover the lagoon area.
Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen gave an example of a recent incident in which CCTV could have been vital.
“Last month we had a tourist unfortunately stabbed in the face,” he said.
“We’ve had calls from police and from council over a long time for any level of government to act.”
Mr Keenan said the high number of tourists in Airlie Beach had made it a priority area.
“Obviously tourism is a the primary economic driver for this area,” he said.
“Deploying this CCTV does give people a sense of safety and of course it does stop them being victims of the sorts of behaviours and antisocial behaviour that we don’t want to see.”
The funding comes under the Safer Streets Programme.
BIG BROTHER: Media gather around Federal Minister for Justice Michael Keenan and Dawson MP George Christensen as they announce funding for 84 CCTV cameras in Airlie Beach.
Photo: Sharon Smallwood