Great Ocean Road Coast Committee’s Coastal Reserves Manager Caleb Hurrell is urging the community and holiday beachgoers to be aware of their surroundings, particularly around beach access ramps on the coast.
“Pedestrians and swimmers are at risk when boats are being launched and retrieved from the beach access ramps along the coast.
“It is important beachgoers stays well clear of these facilities when in use to ensure everyone can safely enjoy the coast,” he said.
Maritime Safety Victoria Senior Project Officer Geoffrey Swanton said boat access ramps are installed to enable vessels to access a beach for launching and retrieval, which can result in conflict both in the water and on the beach.
“In Victoria, a person must not bathe within 50 metres of a boat ramp that is about or is being used for launching or retrieving vessels.
The Great Ocean Road Coast Committee manages 37km of Crown land reserves between Torquay and Lorne and are currently assessing user groups and usage of the beach access ramps in their management zone. This includes:
- Fishermans Beach, Torquay
- Anglesea Motor Yacht Club Ramp, Point Roadknight
- Port of Lorne Boat Ramp, Lorne
“We are seeking the communities feedback on how you currently enjoy this area of the coastline with a short-survey to help inform future management options,” Mr Hurrell said.
“We are looking into how we can improve current facilities that will work in with the environment and coastal movements, as well as be suitable for the majority of beach users,” he said.
“Due to the dynamic nature of the coast and sand movements near these beach access ramps, it is unsuitable to investigate larger launching structure options.
“The environmental impacts from implementing larger facilities could include damaging popular local surf breaks and increase rates of erosion.
Great Ocean Road Coast Committee staff will continue inspections of current ramp use to improve future management.