Help prevent drownings and injury
Over the past year, 55 people have tragically downed on Australia’s New South Wales coastline.
Surf Life Saving NSW (SLS NSW) and its lifeguards and lifesavers do an amazing job of managing the safety of members of the public that visit the 150 beaches throughout the state.
However, a combination of increased population growth – particularly around regional coastal areas – and increased use of the coastline as social media draws people to beautiful yet isolated locations, has increased the use of high risk sites.
For SLS NSW, it has raised the following questions – ‘How can we reduce the risk of drowning and injury?’, and ‘Are we providing services and support at the highest risk times of the year, and day?’.
The Coastal Insights: Safer Coasts for the Future project is working to answer these questions using GIS data. It aims to reduce the risk of drowning and injury at beaches, shore platforms, and coastal waterways throughout New South Wales through risk analysis models and frameworks and providing insights and recommendations to coastal safety stakeholders.
To do this, it leverages GIS data to identify exposure elements – namely the number of beach and water users; and the vulnerability element, the hazard awareness, behaviours and competence of those groups that use particular sites.