Funding barrier to shark plan: City of Wanneroo

Quinns Beach.
Quinns Beach.

THE City of Wanneroo may push for State Government funding to install a shark barrier in the southern section of Quinns Beach.

The council will tonight consider findings from a shark barrier feasibility study that named the beach as the preferred site for the structure.

It follows an incident in Dawesville on Wednesday in which an 18-year-old surfer was taken to hospital for treatment after he was bitten on the foot by a shark.

A report on the study said despite a low risk, with no fatal attacks occurring within the City to date, a barrier would provide a safe swimming enclosure and offer peace of mind for beach users given an increase in shark sightings along WA’s coastline.

A 300m barrier parallel to the coast and 75m barrier perpendicular to the coast has been recommended.

It is expected to cost about $300,000 for planning, approval and design services and capital and installation costs, and about $10,000-$20,000 for annual inspection fees.

A report to the council said funds would need to be listed in the City’s 20-year capital works program if the barrier was supported and that State Government funding opportunities would also be pursued.

At last week’s briefing, Mayor Tracey Roberts foreshadowed an amendment to contact the government requesting financial support that other councils had received for barriers.

The report said the enclosure could boost the profile of the beach, visitor numbers, customers of local businesses and memberships at the nearby Quinns Mindarie Surf Life Saving Club.

Preliminary discussions have been held with two possible suppliers, Global Marine Enclosures and Eco Shark Barrier, with others to be identified through the tender process.

The report encouraged the City to investigate other shark barrier locations. It said more barriers could be considered depending on the success of the Quinns Beach structure.