Lakes Entrance and Mallacoota Surf Life Saving Clubs will benefit from having access to state-of-the art life saving drones, which will be delivered under a Liberal Nationals Government.
Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, said this summer had been a horror one on Victorian beaches with 21 recorded drowning deaths – the highest in over a decade.
"In recent years we have also seen fatalities here in East Gippsland. Our life saving clubs do an amazing job in our communities, and this is about giving them the latest safety tools available," Mr Bull said.
"Initially, 15 drones will be purchased and Life Saving Victoria will determine the best locations for these drones from a safety perspective at any point in time.
"The $400,000 investment will not only purchase the drones, but also provide operator training for up to 100 lifesavers," Mr Bull said.
Drones currently operate in New South Wales and Queensland to save lives and give lifesavers eyes in the sky, providing a birds-eye view of rips and other hazards and dropping floatation aids to swimmers in distress.
Using cutting-edge computer software, these drones can automatically distinguish between swimmers, boats, sharks and even stingrays.
Shadow Minister for Emergency Services, Brad Battin, who is no stranger to East Gippsland's beaches, said this was about keeping swimmers safe on our beaches and mitigating risks posed to volunteer lifesavers.
“Giving swimmers in trouble something to hold on to while they wait for help to arrive could be the difference between a successful rescue and another tragic statistic.
“Our hardworking volunteer lifesavers patrol our beaches and risk their own lives to save others," he said.
Sunday, March 18, 2018