New emergency phone at Salmon Holes courtesy of $13,530 grant
13 people have died while rock fishing at Salmon Holes in the past three decades
An emergency telephone installed at a dangerous rock fishing spot near Albany is expected to improve emergency response times and potentially save lives.
Racing and Gaming Minister Colin Holt today inspected the new emergency phone at Salmon Holes, which was funded by a $13,530 grant from the Liberal National Government's Gaming Community Trust.
Mr Holt dedicated the device to the people who had died after slipping or being washed off the rocks and also those who risked their lives to save others, such as the Albany Sea Rescue Squad.
Mr Holt said the phone would counter poor mobile phone reception at Salmon Holes and came on the back of a separate State and Australian government commitment to upgrade mobile coverage in the area.
"The new phone works on a 3G network with a push button that calls triple zero directly," he said.
"Fast communication with emergency services can sometimes be the difference between life and death."
Grant recipient Recfishwest worked with the Department of Parks and Wildlife to determine the installation site for the phone.
Environment Minister Albert Jacob said it was important people fishing at Salmon Holes put their safety first.
"Should there be an incident, the emergency telephone will be a vital aid for rescuers, however people need to be aware that fishing from the rocks in this location is dangerous," Mr Jacob said.
"Fish from sandy beaches where possible and remember that the weather can change quickly in this region and large, unpredictable swells commonly occur, even on calm days."
Money from the Gaming Community Trust is derived from unclaimed winnings in WA, as well as gaming operations at Crown Casino
The trust was established in 2002 to provide advice and make recommendations to the Minister for Racing and Gaming on the distribution of funds and grants for the general benefit of the community
Racing and Gaming Minister's office - 6552 6100
Environment Minister's office - 6552 5800