Kitesurfing and windsurfing access could be restricted if Cottesloe council adopts new policiy

Kitesurfing and windsurfing could only be allowed at Dutch Inn, Cottesloe. Picture: Jon Bassett.
Kitesurfing and windsurfing could only be allowed at Dutch Inn, Cottesloe. Picture: Jon Bassett.

KITESURFING and windsurfing access to beaches will be banned except at a new official zone about 1km south of Cottesloe Beach if Cottesloe Council adopts a new local law next month.

“If the local law goes through as advertised, that’s the only place that they will be able to launch and land,” chief executive Mat Humfrey said.

A recent council letter to those who commented on the proposal said rigging, launching and landing would be allowed in a new official zone between the Rosendo and Beach streets’ intersections with Marine Parade, on 300m of beach north of the Dutch Inn groyne.

“But not permitted to use all other beach foreshores,” the letter said.

Nearby Fremantle and Cambridge councils have designated areas at their beaches.

Mr Humfrey said Cottesloe’s official zone could still be used to kite or windsurf offshore along the town’s 4km coast, and those concerned about no access at other beaches should contact the council.

Council-proposed improvements in any official zone include showers, moving a foreshore playground at Dutch Inn, while submissions suggested repairing beach paths and more off-road parking.

The proposed official zone currently hosts an unofficial site for kiters near Salvado Street, windsurfers have used nearby Dutch Inn since the late-1970s, and other occasional sites include the dog beaches at the south and north ends of Cottesloe.

The new law was proposed after an incorrect public complaint about a kitesurfing equipment hitting a person near the Dutch Inn groyne last year.

Repeated near-misses between kite surfers and the public have also been reported at Telephone Box surf break, 100m past the official zone, where kitesurfer Marc Sprod was killed in 2013.

West Australian Kitesurfing Association (WAKSA) president Drew Norton said Cottesloe was a high-profile location so every persons’ safety was foremost in considering any local law, and WAKSA would work to get another official zone near Swanbourne Beach.

WindsurfingWA (WWA) president Tim Brazier said WWA was satisfied any new local law was equitable, but windsurfers wanted the Dutch Inn improvements completed and any new rules “phased-in” during a summer.

The proposal is due at the council’s May 17 agenda briefing, before consideration at the May 24 meeting.