Bob Wiese

Bob Wiese


    Increased funding for volunteer sea, search and rescue groups

    21/11/1995 12:00 AM



    Emergency Services Minister Bob Wiese said funding for Western Australia's volunteer sea, search and rescue groups had been increased by $100,000 from last year.


    Mr Wiese said the 50 per cent increase in funding was essential for the 33 groups stationed along the State's coast to maintain their high standard of surveillance and offshore assistance.


    "This Government recognises the vital role these volunteer groups play in providing a rescue service to boat owners throughout the State," he said.


    "Members of these groups devote countless hours and personal finances in their efforts to assist the boating public and it is important that their endeavours are supported by Government.


    "The Premier has also acknowledged the magnificent job these organisations do - in some cases for 24 hours a day, seven days a week - and he has been a major supporter for this increase."


    Mr Wiese said a primary area for the extra funding had been to increase the base grant to the groups by $1,000 with a further increase in the funds allocated for `activity grants'.


    Activity grants are assessed through the amount of rescue work, personnel training and public education programs being conducted by each group.


    "It is vital to ensure that lives are not compromised through a lack of resources and training for the volunteer groups," Mr Wiese said.


    "These sea, search and rescue groups must be able to perform their duties to the best of their abilities and this is recognised by Government with this significant financial increase.


    "In addition, a contingency fund of $5,000 will be set up to assist groups with fuel costs for extended searches."


    Mr Wiese said the extra funds would also provide additional insurance coverage of up to $400,000 for any one vessel, a proposal which had been requested by the Volunteer Sea Search and Rescue Association of WA.


    He said the rescue groups would receive their grants by post this week.


    Media contact:  Mark Thompson 222 9595 or 322 2311