Changes will improve safety on the water at Geraldton
News for the Department of Transport
Changes will be made to water ski areas and boating prohibited zones to protect swimmers and improve boating safety at Geraldton after support from the local community.
In March the Department of Transport (DoT) released seven proposals for public comment as part of the Geraldton Aquatic Use Review, to improve the management of aquatic use in the waters off Geraldton and at Drummond Cove.
DoT's Operations Manager Joyce Newnham said there had been a high level of public participation in the review with 175 submissions received - mostly in response to an online survey.
"After considering the feedback from the community, undertaking further discussions with local authorities, clubs and interest groups some minor amendments were made to the seven proposals and today have been formally gazetted as law," Ms Newnham said.
The changes include:
- Creation of a new water ski and parasail area to the north of the Batavia Coast Marina to reduce congestion at Town Beach ski area and provide a location for the safe operation of parasailing vessels.
- Extension of the existing closed waters to motorised vessel area along Beresford foreshore northward approximately 240 metres to the southern side of the rock groyne to improve safety of swimmers.
- Extension of the western edge of the Town Beach closed waters to motorised vessels area approximately 70 metres seaward to improve the safety of swimmers.
- Increase the size of the current water ski area at Town Beach to reduce congestion.
- Creation of a new water ski area at Pages Beach to provide an alternative area mostly for small vessels launched locally including the formal marking of the existing closed waters area.
- Removal of the commercial parasailing area at Greys Beach.
- Creation of a new water ski area at Drummond Cove.
Ms Newnham said the new arrangements would have many safety benefits and would not limit access as water ski areas are not exclusive use areas.
"All current users of these areas will retain access," Ms Newnham said.
DoT's free boating guide for the area and local signage will be updated to reflect the changes.