Yanchep beaches aerial patrols resume

The Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter will start weekend patrols including of Yanchep beaches from today.

YANCHEP beaches will again be patrolled on weekends by Surf Life Saving WA’s Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter starting from today, Saturday, September 3.

Meanwhile, the City of Wanneroo has accepted a tender submitted by Surf Life Saving WA to provide a beach safety service for the City of Wanneroo, including for Yanchep, for a period of three years starting on Tuesday, November 1.

Surf Life Saving WA lifesaving services manager Peter Scott said aerial patrols would cover metropolitan beaches as far north as Yanchep, to the Dawesville cut in the south and west to Rottnest Island.

Mr Scott said the service had a range of responsibilities including looking for people in distress, incidents on beaches, rip currents and marine life, including the presence of sharks.

In the absence of weekend volunteer beach patrols, which do not commence until October, he also wanted to remind beachgoers of actions to take on the occasion that a beach is closed by the service.

He said that most beach goers understood that if the helicopter hovered overhead and sounded the siren they should exit the water, but in the absence of further instruction they were often unsure of what to do once the helicopter had moved on.

“Correct action can include staying out of the water for up to 60 mins from the siren sounding when, subject to other activity, the helicopter service will return to the site to complete a further sweep of the area to assess the hazard level,” he said.

Surf Life Saving WA also encouraged beachgoers to check coastal conditions and warnings via the SLSWA Twitter account (@slswa) or the free BeachSAFE App prior to heading to the beach.

The helicopter service will move to daily patrols from Saturday, October 1.