ROCK fishing can be a dangerous sport, with new safety measures being considered in Sanremo.
Tragically, several rock fishermen have died after being washed away by the coastal rock plateaus, according to the Victorian Fisheries Authority (VFA).
VFA is now seeking comments on a proposal to require fishermen to wear life jackets when fishing in certain high-risk locations during a two-year trial.
VFA CEO Travis Dowling said the evidence was compelling that wearing a life jacket significantly reduced the risk of drowning in the unfortunate event that a rock fisherman found himself in the water.
“The requirement to wear life jackets may be necessary to ensure the safety of more people and to prevent avoidable loss of life,” said Mr. Dowling.
“The proposal is to require fishermen to wear a life jacket when fishing in nine hazardous locations, which were selected on the basis of previous rock-fishing related fatalities and near-fatal incidents.
“We are keen to understand the community’s views on this proposal and have published a discussion paper for public comment. “
Trial sites include:
* Punchbowl Rocks (San Remo).
* Rocks of the Cape Schanck lighthouse.
* Rocks at the south end of Potters Hill Road (San Remo).
* Rock platform near the blowhole parking lot at Cape Bridgewater.
* Dragon head on Rye’s back deck.
* Rocks of Bush Rangers Bay, east of Cape Schanck.
* Rocks of the rear beach of Sorrento.
* Artillery Rocks, west of Lorne.
* Rock platform in front of Sheoak Falls, south of Lorne.
The discussion paper is available at vfa.vic.gov.au/rockfishing and comments can be sent to [email protected] before 5 p.m. on November 19, 2021.
If the proposal is accepted, the VFA will work with major recreational fishing groups on an education program with the aim of having new arrangements in place by December 2021.