BREAKING NEWS: Mike Baird Announces Shark Nets To Be Installed On NSW North Coast

12 Oct 2016 34

COASTALWATCH | LATEST NEWS

The NSW State Government has just announced that the installation of nets across far NSW North Coast beaches will now take place after today's attack at Sharpes Beach, north of Ballina.

The 25-year-old was surfing with friends when he was bitten by a shark and suffered lacerations to his lower leg.

Premier Mike Baird told Parliament that the extraordinary circumstances of the shark crisis on the NSW North Coast and repeated shark attacks required a critical response that was being followed up with pleas of desperation from the local member, local mayor and residents.

SEE ALSO: The NSW DPI Answer Coastalwatch's Questions About Failed Shark Barriers

“We have to prioritise human life over everything." Baird said. "The sentiment in that North Coast community has shifted. They were against nets. The recent attacks have started to shift that. There is a mood and a change within that community.”

Richard Beckers from Ballina Surf who's business and sales has been directly affected by the shark crisis has said "It's about time. I think we need everything that we can get. There are so many sharks out there everyone's seeing them! I think we need the drumlines too but this is a good start."

Lennox surfer/shaper and Coastalwatch panellist Phil Myers says he’s “a little bit stunned. And a bit of relief I suppose. I’m happy that they’ve listened to us though I do think they listened to the shark attack a bit.

“People were getting really frustrated. But when the nets go up it’ll give people confidence — I wouldn’t be surprised if (business) takes off again around the place.” He says “the only thing I’d ask now is when (the nets will go in). I just hope it’s soon. I wanna go surfing!"

SEE ALSO: Coastalwatch Shark Discussion Replay

He said he would be writing to the Federal Government requesting a six-month trial of the nets, which the government has previously resisted installing despite criticism that it valued marine life over human life.

Aside from this new development, the government has said they will continue to investigate options to get the best possible method of ensuring the safety. “But there are extraordinary circumstances. We have to respond. We will be responding..” Said Baird.

This is the 16th shark attack in NSW since September 2015. 

*SEE THE BALLINA COMMUNITY'S LIVE SHARK DISCUSSION WITH THE NSW DPI, BELOW - Hosted by Nick Carroll.

Tags: sharks , ballina (create Alert from these tags)

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