ROCK fishing can be a dangerous sport, with new safety measures being considered at San Remo.
Tragically, several rock fishers have died after being swept off coastal rock shelves, according to the Victorian Fisheries Authority (VFA).
VFA is now seeking feedback on a proposal to require fishers to wear lifejackets when fishing at certain high-risk locations during a two-year trial.
VFA CEO Travis Dowling said the evidence was irrefutable that wearing a life jacket substantially reduced the risk of drowning in the unfortunate event that a rock fisher ends up in the water.
“Mandating the wearing of life jackets may be necessary to keep more people safe and avoid the preventable loss of life,” Mr Dowling said.
“The proposal is to require fishers wear a lifejacket when fishing at nine dangerous locations, which have been selected based on previous rock fishing-related deaths and near-fatal incidents.
“We are keen to understand community views on this proposal and have released a discussion paper for public comment.”
Sites in the trial include:
* Punchbowl Rocks (San Remo).
* Cape Schanck Lighthouse rocks.
* Rocks at the southern end of Potters Hill Road (San Remo).
* Rock platform near the blow holes carpark at Cape Bridgewater.
* Dragon’s Head at Rye back beach.
* Bush Rangers Bay rocks, east of Cape Schanck.
* Sorrento back beach rocks.
* Artillery Rocks, west of Lorne.
* Rock platform opposite Sheoak Falls, south of Lorne.
The discussion paper is available at vfa.vic.gov.au/rockfishing and feedback can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org by 5pm on November 19, 2021.
Should the proposal proceed, the VFA will work with key recreational fishing groups on an education program with the aim of having any new arrangements in place by December 2021.
Life jackets could be mandatory for San Remo rock fishers