Boaties face lock-out

Boaties face lock-out

The proposal by Cr Josh Wilson would reduce the danger to swimmers from passing boats and other watercraft, like jet skis.

At last month’s council meeting, residents said the danger to swimmers was real and pointed out that the safety of people taking swimming lessons at South Beach should be a priority.

After the meeting Cr Wilson said the issue was raised by beach users and members of the Save Freo Beaches group.

‘I know people who have been involved in collisions between swimmers and water craft, and there are circumstances quite regularly where swimmers have to take evasive action or curtail their swim because they can’t rely on water craft keeping a safe distance,’ he said.

He said current regulations were unclear and ineffective.

However, Fremantle Sailing Club said in a submission that the club’s lease extended into the beach area.

The submissions said the club’s opinion was that the land just to the south of the club should be available for use by beachgoers, off-the-beach sailors and by people seeking to land at the beach in small powered craft.

‘Clear separation between powered vessels and beachgoers is critical and the extensive length of the beach is such that this can be achieved without infringing on the use and enjoyment of multiple users of the beach,’ Commodore Terry Baker wrote.

Speaking on behalf of the Fremantle Residents Beach Users Association, Georgie Adeane said the proposal should be supported because it was a community safety issue and swimmers vastly outnumbered boat users.