Coogee: beachgoers warned about complacency after surf patrols end for season


Coogee Beach Surf Life Saving volunteers Cath Spencer, Budda McDonald and Coogee Beach SLSC lifesaving director Sarah McDonald.
Coogee Beach Surf Life Saving volunteers Cath Spencer, Budda McDonald and Coogee Beach SLSC lifesaving director Sarah McDonald.

BEACHGOERS have been warned against complacency with volunteer surf lifesavers across Western Australia having wrapped up their 2016-17 patrol season.

Surf Life Saving WA’s (SLSWA) rescue helicopter has also conducted its final aerial patrols for the season.

Despite the colder weather through autumn and winter, SLSWA general manager Chris Peck said beaches would remain popular.

“While you will not see the iconic red and yellow flags designating patrolled areas, you can still make informed choices to increase your safety and that of your friends and family before deciding to go in the water,” he said.

Information about conditions could be gathered by visiting SLSWA’s twitter feed or checking out the mybeach. com.au and Sharksmart websites to check for hazards.

“During this time of year we do not have services immediately on hand to provide assistance should people get into trouble,” Mr Peck said.

“We urge people to assess the conditions before heading into the water and to not overestimate their abilities.

“We continue to use the age old mantra of ‘if in doubt, don’t go out’.”

Coogee Beach Surf Life Saving Club, which patrols Cockburn’s coast between Port Coogee and Woodman Point, wrapped up a mammoth season last month.

Chief patrol officer Patrick Rivers said 220 volunteers put in more than 6700 hours to keep more than 102,000 visitors to the coast safe.

He too warned about the dangers with lifesavers no longer monitoring local beaches.

“Water conditions can be a bit rougher during the off-period.

“So be extra careful if you swim near fixed objects including jetties, the swimming enclosure and the marine trail,” he said.

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