Coastalwatch Surf Cam Captures Fatal Shark Incident At Ballina – Official Statement

10 Feb 2015 1 Share

Camera Location

Camera Location

At 7:50AEDT on February 9, 2015 the Coastalwatch.com Ballina Shelly Beach Surf Cam captured an incident of what appears to be a large marine animal coming into contact with a surfer sitting in the water.

The contact appears to last for approximately 5-10 seconds with a large amount of water, turbulence and splashing occurring. The Surf Cam, which is on an automatic panning tour of the beach area, then pans away from the scene and no other footage is captured of the incident. Nothing of a graphic nature can be seen from the Surf Cam footage other than the water disturbance.

Two other surfers are seen to be close to the surfer during the contact, one approximately 20-30 metres away to the north, and another 5-10 metres closer to shore. More surfers are seen to be in the water to the south of the incident.

This incident occurred approximately 50 metres from the shore to the south end of Shelly Beach directly in front of the Surf Life Saving Club where the Coastalwatch Surf Cam is located.

Within minutes the alarm had been raised and the Surf Cam control was switched to the control room at Surf Life Saving NSW State Command centre (Surfcom). At this time the surf camera live stream is automatically switched off from public broadcast on coastalwatch.com.

SLSNSW used the camera to assist in their rescue operations and to assist other emergency services involved. The recorded footage of the incident has been provided to NSW Police for their investigation of the incident.

Coastalwatch.com has recorded that possibly 5 people were logged onto the live streaming Surf Cam at the time of the incident via coastalwatch.com. Although as the incident was not graphic in appearance and at least 150 metres away from the camera, it is highly unlikely that someone watching live would have recognised the incident as it was occurring.

The Surf Cam system records all footage for 3-7 days depending on the location of the Surf Cam. These are made public to Coastalwatch Plus members (a subscription service of Coastalwatch.com). At the time of the incident the Ballina Shelly Beach Surf Cam replay system was out of service and no recordings of the incident have or were published on Coastalwatch.com.

Coastalwatch / CoastalCOMS will not be releasing any of the footage of the incident or discussing any further details of the incident out of respect to the victim and the victim’s family.

About Coastalwatch & CoastalCOMS Surf Cam services

Coastalwatch is the leading provider of coastal video monitoring solutions in the country, which started in 1998 in Burleigh Heads, Queensland.

The Ballina Shelly Beach Surf cam is 1 of 46 surf cams across the coast of NSW, which is apart of a network of over 100 surf cams across the country.

The Coastalwatch surf cams are administered by CoastalCOMS. Some of the cameras on the network and their footage are licensed to emergency service providers like Surf Life Saving NSW. 

The live network is used by number of coastal safety services providers (via CoastalCOMS platform) to monitor and assist in emergency operations. Some of the network is also used by the public for recreational purposes via Coastalwatch.com, this includes surfers, beach goers, boat owners and fisherman alike who use the cams and surf reports to check beach and water conditions for the day.

Coastalwatch is community-focused organization providing a free public information service and is privately funded.

Links:

Coastalwatch Ballina Shelly Beach Surf Cam

Coastalwatch Business Funding

CoastalCOMS video surveillance solutions

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