Scarborough business community pushes for shark alert system at Scarborough Beach


Smart Marine Systems founder Craig Anderson has made a presentation to the Scarborough Beach Association about its Clever Buoys system, which was trialled at City Beach last year, and wants it to be installed at Scarborough. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d480435
Smart Marine Systems founder Craig Anderson has made a presentation to the Scarborough Beach Association about its Clever Buoys system, which was trialled at City Beach last year, and wants it to be installed at Scarborough. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d480435

SCARBOROUGH’S business community is pushing for a shark alert system to be installed at Scarborough Beach.

Smart Marine Systems, formerly Shark Mitigation Systems, made a presentation to the Scarborough Beach Association (SBA) on Wednesday about its Clever Buoy marine monitoring system.

The system was part of a State Government trial at City Beach last year, with results expected to be released soon.

Founder Craig Anderson said it created a “virtual net” using sonar and specially designed software to identify sharks nearby and send alerts to lifeguards or first responders.

He and business partner Hamish Jolly started the Fremantle-based company in 2011 after a spate of deaths from shark attacks in WA.

“We started a journey of trying to find solutions that were non-invasive and eco-friendly,” Mr Anderson said.

“We’d love to have it in our waters here.

“It’s not a matter of if, it’s just when.”

Association chairman Wayne Bowen said the presentation was “enthusiastically received” by businesses and local residents.

“The redevelopment investment in Scarborough specifically and the tourism push for WA in general needs to be protected, by completing the final touches to Perth’s most famous and iconic beach, by way of this virtual barrier, ensuring that all this investment and promotion is not undone by failing to finish and offer comfort and confidence to tourists wanting to sample our wonderful beach,” he said.

“The SBA sees this as an opportunity for the joint forces of State Government, local government and private business to come together and make this happen, both financially and operationally.

“The SBA is willing to be the conduit of this ‘coming together’ to ensure a way forward.”

Mr Anderson said the association recognised the benefits of the system in ensuring Scarborough became a “destination beach”.

“They really understand the importance of having a safe beach,” he said.

“It’s the place I go to surf and the place I take my son surfing.”

The system was trialled at Sydney’s Bondi Beach and is set to launch at Newport Beach in California for their summer.

Mr Anderson described it as a “fantastic accolade” that the local community had sought them out and said discussions also involved US Congress.

The City of Stirling has been contacted for comment.

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