The importance of Emergency Response Beacons (ERB) to reduce the risk of drownings has been highlighted by a number of drownings since the beginning of 2023.
In early November 2022 two men were saved from drowning at Dreamtime Beach, Fingal Head when a woman activated the Emergency Response Beacon (ERB), alerting the Surf Life Saving NSW (SLSNSW) State Operations Centre that the men were drowning.
Lennox Head is currently waiting for an ERB to be installed as are sites at Brunswick Heads breakwall, Belongil Beach, and Tallows Beach with the ERBs having been available since mid-2022.
Cheyne Willebrands, Ballina Shire Council’s Manager Open Spaces told The Echo that, ‘Ballina Shire Council is working with NSW Surf Life Saving to install a new Emergency Response Beacon (ERB) at Lennox Head beach. This work is expected to be completed as part of the Lennox Village Vision upgrade works at Lennox Park.’
Ballina Council said that they are expecting to complete the works, including the installation of the ERB in early 2023.
There are no other ERBs currently planned for Ballina Shire, however, a spokesperson for the BSC said that, ‘Council would be open to working with Surf Life Saving NSW to install more ERBs in the future’.
The are currently 20 ERBs positioned at blackspots around the state, the initiative is managed by Surf Life Saving NSW and funded through the NSW government. There is also another ERB at North Kingscliff.
For more information on ERBs see Surf Lifesaving NSW.