Free daily loan of lifejackets for fishers in State-wide initiative to improve safety
Fishers encouraged to fish from beaches rather than rocks
An estimated 740,000 recreational fishers in WA
Fishers throughout the State can collect a free lifejacket for loan as the State Government and its partners ramp up efforts to increase safety for all recreational anglers this Easter.
Speaking in Albany, Fisheries Minister Ken Baston said thousands of keen fishers descended on the South Coast every year for the famous salmon run.
"Albany is geared up, ready for the influx, with numerous measures to make fishers safer in their fishing environment," Mr Baston said.
"The message is 'don't put your life on the line. Don't become a statistic. No fish is worth dying for'."
There are 22 lifejacket loan locations throughout the State, including Albany and Katanning migrant resource centres. Six rock anchor points have been installed at Salmon Holes in Albany, allowing fishers to tether themselves using their own rope and harness. Twelve orange life rings have been provided in high-risk fishing locations.
"There's no real need to fish from the rocks when you can catch as many salmon from the beach," the Minister said.
"We want people returning home safe this Easter."
Reports from recreational fishers indicate there are only small numbers of salmon off the South Coast at present. Fishers must heed a bag limit of four salmon a day, over 30 centimetres long.
Anglers are encouraged to use appropriate safety gear, with information available on the Recfishwest website at http://www.fishandsurvive.com.au
Since 2002, about 25 people have died while rock fishing in WA
Recfishwest leads WA's rock fishing safety strategy, after a 2013 State Government commitment to fund education and install safety equipment at high-risk locations
This is a partnership between local land managers, government agencies, local communities and volunteers
Every year, recreational fishing licence revenue is allocated to the Recreational Fishing Initiatives Fund
This has funded more than 20 projects and seen more than $6.5 million invested into projects to enhance recreational fishing in WA
Minister's office - 6552 5400