Mandurah’s BEN signs lead the way in beach safety

The BEN signs.
The BEN signs.

THE City of Mandurah is a finalist in the Government Award category in the WA Resilient Australia Awards.

The awards recognise innovative practices and achievements across Australia that are making communities safer, stronger, more resilient and better prepared to manage any emergency situation.

The City’s contribution has been the Beach Emergency Number (BEN) signs that have made beaches safer with emergency services knowing exactly where to go.

It is particularly important for surf spots that are often called by their colloquial name or nick name and are unfamiliar to emergency service staff.

With the BEN number there is no confusion.

The need for the signs was originally raised with the City of Mandurah by local man Rick Gerring after the tragic death of his brother Ben after he was bitten by a shark in 2016.

From this the BEN signage was born.

Since then the City has installed 81 signs with the State Government and other local governments also embracing the idea.

More than 1000 BEN signs are planned for the coast from Geraldton to Esperance.