WITH the summer school holidays now upon us, the Queensland Government is urging people to take care when swimming at the beach and follow the simple safety tips below to reduce the risk of a shark attack.
Queensland Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries, Bill Byrne said while shark control equipment was in place to reduce the possibility of an attack, it was not an impenetrable barrier.
Mr Byrne said sharks were most active after dusk, at night or just before dawn and warned bull shark populations would increase in our canals during summer.
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“It’s important that swimmers remain aware of the risk of sharks and take care in any open body of water, wherever they swim,” the Minister said.
“You should always swim at patrolled beaches and between the flags so you can be alerted, or assisted, if a shark is spotted.
“Swimmers also should consider where and when they swim.
“Sharks are known to be most active after dusk, at night or before dawn. Bull sharks tend to move to the upper reaches of natural waterways to breed at the start of each year.
“Therefore it is likely bull shark populations will increase in canals and lakes during the summer period.”
Advice to public
- Swim or surf only at patrolled beaches and between the flags
- Obey lifesavers’ and lifeguards’ advice, and heed all sign and safety warnings
- Leave the water immediately if a shark is sighted
- Do not swim or surf after dusk, at night or before dawn when sharks are most active
- Do not swim or surf in murky waters
- Do not swim in or near mouths of estuaries, artificial canals and lakes
- Never swim alone
- Never swim when bleeding
- Do not swim near schools of fish or where fish are being cleaned
- Do not swim near or interfere with shark control equipment
- Do not swim with animals.
- For more information on shark control in Queensland, visit www.fisheries.qld.gov.au or call 13 25 23.