Hon Don Punch, WA Fisheries Minister, Media Release, 4 September 2021
Surf Life Saving WA’s (SLSWA) shark mitigation services begin for another season this weekend – with the McGowan Government providing longer term certainty for the program with funding in the State Budget until 2024-25.
The $12 million allocation in the State Budget will continue the State Government’s comprehensive program of beach and aerial patrols, integrated communications systems and jet ski response team.
The two SLSWA helicopters collectively spent more than 1,000 hours in flight last season patrolling the State’s coastline.
The SLSWA patrols form an important part of Western Australia’s world-first integrated shark notification and response system, expanded and extended over the past four years by the McGowan Government as part of the State’s comprehensive evidence-based shark hazard mitigation program.
Shark mitigation measures will be expanded further with an additional $5 million recently announced to increase white shark tagging, fund beach enclosures, and meet demand for subsidised shark deterrent devices.
Comments attributed to Fisheries Minister Don Punch:
“With sunny, warm days on the horizon, more Western Australians are expected to head to our world-class beaches for a surf or a swim.
“The State Government-funded SLSWA helicopter patrol service is relied on by many beachgoers when switching on their Sea Sense, and the $12 million budget allocation to continue this service will ensure people can continue to enjoy our beautiful beaches with confidence.
“The helicopter patrols form one component of the McGowan Government’s comprehensive $17 million shark hazard mitigation program, providing world-leading, evidence-based measures to help keep Western Australians safe.”