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Western Australia Releases Shark Warning App

Western Australia Shark Warning App

The Government of Western Australia had recently added another safety initiative to the State’s comprehensive shark hazard mitigation strategy by releasing Western Australia’s first-ever official shark warning app.

According to a recent press release, the SharkSmart WA app works seamlessly alongside the popular SharkSmart website.

The SharkSmart WA App Features

  • It helps water users switch on their Sea Sense by providing near real-time information of shark activity including current alerts and warnings.
  • Fisheries Minister Dave Kelly explained that the SharkSmart WA app is designed to help ocean users make an informed decision about their water use and take personal responsibility for their safety.
  • The app has several features that could help Western Australians. These are:
  1. Explore shark activity information and beach safety features along the WA coast
  2. Discover the locations of shark monitoring receivers, beach enclosures, Surf Life Saving WA (SLSWA) patrols and Beach Emergency Numbers (BEN) signage
  3. Users can select their favourite locations to receive personalised notifications for shark activity as it happens
  4. Information on shark activity, including current alerts and warnings. Information is prioritised into Nearby, Your Favourites and Other Locations providing the most relevant information for the user
  5. User can use the location detail provided while at the beach to report shark sightings or whale carcasses to Water Police as soon as possible

Shark Mitigation Strategy

A new Sea Sense campaign was also launched alongside the app in order to inform the community about how they can use the Western Australian Government’s comprehensive shark hazard mitigation strategy to keep safe at the beach.

The campaign will feature across print, outdoor, television, radio and digital platforms and has a budget of AU$ 328,000.

The WA Government is committed to keeping the community as safe as possible when using the oceans.

There is no one simple solution. Shark encounters are rare and the shark safety initiatives, operational responses and shark safety tips, allow the community to keep informed and help reduce the risk of a shark encounter.

The State Government’s comprehensive shark hazard mitigation strategy also includes the following:

  1. Enhanced beach SLSWA patrols

There is AU$ 3.8 million funding each year to SLSWA to provide helicopter and beach patrols over metropolitan and South West beaches.

Drones are also used to monitor beaches and support events while jet skis and event support are provided to assist evacuations when a shark is sighted.

  1. A world-first personal shark deterrent subsidy for divers and surfers

The State Government has introduced a world-first shark deterrent rebate providing Western Australians with AU$ 200 subsidy on scientifically proven shark deterrent devices.

  1. An extended Shark Monitoring Network to Esperance and the Capes region and tagging operations

The world-class shark monitoring network provides near real-time alerts of tagged sharks when they swim within 400-500 metres of a shark monitoring receiver.

The new app can be downloaded free.

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