Issuu on Google+

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015 S U R F L I F E S AV I N G A U S T R A L I A


N AT I O N A L D R O W N I N G S N A P S H O T

COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

MALE

FEMALE Location

Contributing Factors

16% 27% 9% AT THE BEACH

AT LEAST 5KM FROM A LIFESAVING SERVICE

RIP CURRENTS

MEDICAL CONDITION OR INJURY

ALCOHOL/ DRUGS

Activity

33% SWIMMING

13% ROCK FISHING

19%

0

BOATING

14

9%

12 18

WATERCRAFT

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

19

02

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015

37 2


CONTENTS

IN T RO D U C T I O N

04

06

24

S EC TION ONE: COM MUNIT Y A ND C A PA B ILIT Y

S EC TION T WO: DROWNING A N A LYS IS

AUS T R A L I A N P O PU L AT I O N

08

N AT I O N A L OV ERV IE W

26

COA S TA L V I S I TAT I O N

09

NE W S O U T H WA L E S

32

S WI M M IN G A B IL I T Y

10

Q U EEN S L A ND

34

RI S K PERCEP T I O N

12

V I C TO RI A

36

C A PA B IL I T Y

14

WE S T ERN AUS T R A L I A

38

M EM B ER S HIP C A PACI T Y

18

S O U T H AUS T R A L I A

40

RE S CU E S

20

TA S M A NI A

42

N O RT HERN T ERRI TO RY

45

D ROWNIN G CH A IN

46

G LOS S A RY

48

REFEREN CE

50


INTRODUCTION

A

s the nation’s peak coastal water safety, drowning prevention and rescue authority, Surf Life Saving Australia’s vision is zero preventable deaths in Australian waters. The National Coastal Safety Report 2015 provides a detailed analysis for 2014–15 and helps identify the challenges ahead to improve water safety and lower Australia’s drowning rate. Our aim is to create great Australians, build better communities, and continue our primary mission of saving lives. Australians and visitors are drawn to our vast and beautiful coastline, with an estimated 100 million visitations each year. Surf Life Saving Australia (SLSA) has provided a reliable safety service to meet the community’s needs for more than 100 years. The National Coastal Safety Report 2015 details SLSA’s holistic approach to drowning prevention via the Total Service Plan and the National Safety Agenda. It recognises that drowning is only part of the analysis that informs sound decision-making regarding coastal safety. This report also features vital information about the Australian community and how they interact with the coast. Such evidence is crucial in understanding how Surf Life Saving may need to adapt to carry on meeting community needs, while also acting to increase people’s resilience to coastal hazards. Surf Life Saving’s existing capacity and capability, including lifesaving services and resources, prevention strategies and emergency response activities, are outlined in the report. Surf Life Saving uses detailed analysis to deliver evidence-based drowning prevention and resilience-building initiatives, including

our Beach Drowning Blackspot Reduction Program. We are committed to using our limited resources to achieve the greatest reduction in drowning and the best return on investment for government, corporate partners and donors across the community, including our dedicated fundraisers, the Guardians of the Surf. Despite the extensive national network of lifesaving services, 102 people drowned in 2014–15. Every one of these lives lost is one too many. Surf Life Saving is committed to the goal of Australian Water Safety Strategy 2012–2015: to reduce coastal drowning by 50% by 2020. It is an ambitious undertaking that will only be achievable with an evidence-based strategy delivered with commitment and collaboration. I commend this report to you as a vital element in the effort to reduce drowning deaths on Australia’s coast.

Melissa King Chief Executive Officer Surf Life Saving Australia

SURF LIFE SAVING USES DETAILED ANALYSIS TO DELIVER EVIDENCE-BASED DROWNING PREVENTION AND RESILIENCEBUILDING INITIATIVES.

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

04

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


T O TA L S E R V I C E P L A N

T

he Total Service Plan is Surf Life Saving Australia’s (SLSA) national drowning reduction strategy and service plan. It is created using an iterative process of analysis and review to identify coastal safety issues of national importance. This approach follows the public health model and is consistent with international risk management principles. In collaboration with stakeholders, SLSA identifies coastal safety risks using incident monitoring, coastal risk assessments and participation analysis. This information is analysed via trend and target identification, GIS plotting and critical incident analysis to identify the top national coastal safety issues, priorities and blackspot areas that require intervention or mitigation strategies.

The coastal safety needs of the Australian community reflected in the National Safety Agenda and the Surf Life Saving movement’s capacity and capability to meet these needs are explored in the ‘Community and Capability’ section of this report.

Context Drowning Statistics Non-fatal Drowning Data Operational Statistics Market Research Population Data Participation/Behaviour Data

Coastal Safety Hub

THE NATIONAL SAFETY AGENDA The issues and blackspots identified through the Total Service Plan process form the basis of SLSA’s National Safety Agenda. The agenda influences lifesaving operations, including Communication services and equipment allocation, and and Consultation drives public education, including Market Research evidence-based mitigation strategies, Stakeholder Consultation Councils, Committees communications campaigns and pilot and Groups projects, and informs SLSA’s research Conferences and Forums plan. Each component of the agenda is regularly reviewed, evaluated and revised as new evidence and data become available. The Total Service Plan takes a risk management approach, which allows SLSA to use the evidence to ensure we locate lifesaving services and assets in areas of need and have appropriate public education programs and mitigation strategies to address the coastal safety issues and known blackspots. Embedded in the process is continual monitoring and evaluation of evidence, policies, strategies and programs to ensure the treatments and interventions are effective in reducing drowning deaths along the Australian coast.

Risk Assessment

Risk Identification Incident Tracking Capability Statement Participation/Behaviour Analysis

National Risk Register Coastal Risk Assessments

Analysis Coastal Safety Briefs Trend Identification GIS Analysis

Critical Incident Analysis Target Identification Case Studies

Monitoring and Evaluation Monitor Trends Monitor and Evaluate Service/ Asset Deployment Evaluate Pilot Programs Evaluate Research

Evaluation National Coastal Safety Report Strategic Research Agenda

National Safety Agenda National Coastal Safety Issues Blackspot Identification

Treatment/Intervention Lifesaving and Support Services Blackspot Reduction Program Beach Safety Equipment Fund Communication Campaigns Public Education and Training Early Warning Systems

Figure 1

NATIONAL SAFETY AGENDA ISSUES 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Rip Currents Boating Rock Fishing Watercraft Toxicity and Health International Tourists

7. Snorkelling and Diving 8. Over 55 Years 9. Dangerous Marine Creatures 10. New Migrants

SECTION ONE

TOTAL SERVICE PLAN PROCESS OVERVIEW The Total Service Plan aligns with the International Standard ISO 31000:2009 framework, which provides principles and guidelines for risk management.

05

COMMUNIT Y AND CAPABILIT Y


COMMUNIT Y AND C A PA B I LI T Y SECTION ONE

12,690 49,336 RESCUES PROFICIENT MEMBERS

1,300,000 VOLUNTEER PATROL HOURS

1,499

313

1,035

IRBs

Clubs

Helicopter Missions


A U S T R A L I A N P O P U L AT I O N

Figure 2

AUSTRALIAN POPULATION DENSITY PER LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA (LGA) This map shows the estimated Australian population density per LGA at 30 June 2014. Most LGAs with a population density higher than 100 persons per square kilometre are located on Australia’s coastal fringe.

Key to Population Density per LGA < 0.1 persons per km2

Darwin

0.1-1 persons per km2 1-10 persons per km2 10-100 persons per km2 > 100 persons per km2

Brisbane

Perth

Sydney

Adelaide

Canberra 0

1,000km

Melbourne

SCALE

Hobart

Reference: Australian Bureau of Statistics (3218.0 Regional Population Growth, Australia)

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

08

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


C O A S TA L V I S I TAT I O N

Snorkelling or Scuba Diving

1% 1%

4%

Watercraft

2%

2%

2%

Surfing

2%

2%

2%

3%

2%

2%

2%

4%

Land-based or Rock Fishing Boating

1% 1%

Swimming or Wading

2% 1% Total -9%

3%

4%

5+ Times per Week 1-4 Times per Week 1-3 Times per Month 3-11 Times per Year Less Often

Total - 9%

3%

1% Total - 10% 2%

Total - 12%

7%

6%

6%

0

7%

Total - 18%

8%

10

4%

3%

2%

22%

20

9%

30

40

Total - 49% 50

Figure 3

2014â&#x20AC;&#x201C;15: COASTAL VISITATION BY ACTIVITY Question: Which of the following coastal activities have you participated in during the past 12 months? How often do you participate in these activities? Almost half of the Australian population visit the coast at least once per year to swim, making

it the most popular coastal activity. The second most popular activity is boating, with 18% of people participating in boating at least once a year.

Swimming

Surfing

8.1 million swimmers 2.9 million frequent swimmers (at least once a month) 7 swimming hours per occasional swimmer per year 48 swimming hours per frequent swimmer per year

1.7 million surfers 1 million frequent surfers (at least once a month) 8 surfing hours per occasional surfer per year 279 surfing hours per frequent surfer per year

Boating

Watercraft

3 million boaters 0.8 million frequent boaters (at least once a month) 17 boating hours per occasional boater per year 110 boating hours per frequent boater per year

1.4 million watercraft users 0.9 million frequent watercraft users (at least once a month) 8 watercraft hours per occasional watercraft user per year 379 watercraft hours per frequent watercraft user per year

Land-based or Rock Fishing

Snorkelling or Scuba Diving

1.9 million fishers 0.8 million frequent fishers (at least once a month) 15 fishing hours per occasional fisher per year 284 fishing hours per frequent fisher per year

1.4 million snorkellers or scuba divers 0.3 million frequent snorkellers or scuba divers (at least once a month) 8 snorkelling or diving hours per occasional snorkeller/ diver per year 261 snorkelling or diving hours per frequent snorkeller/ diver per year

Reference: SLSA National Coastal Safety Survey 2015

SECTION ONE

09

COMMUNIT Y AND CAPABILIT Y


SWIMMING ABILITY

Swimming Ability in General Swimming Ability in the Ocean

39% 33%

56%

31% 38%

23% 20% 14%

14% 9%

8% 4%

Unable To Swim

Weak Swimmer

Average Swimmer

Competent Swimmer

Highly Competent Swimmer

2% 3% Able to Swim 50m in a Pool without Stopping

Can't Say

Able to Swim 50m in the Ocean without Stopping

Figure 4

Figure 5

2014–15: SWIMMING ABILITY OF THE AUSTRALIAN PUBLIC

2014–15: ABILITY TO SWIM 50M WITHOUT STOPPING

Question: How would you rate your swimming ability? And how would you rate your swimming ability in the ocean? Australians rate themselves as less competent swimmers in the ocean than in other locations. While 28% of people say they are competent or highly competent swimmers in general, only 18% of people rate themselves similarly in the ocean.

Question: Are you currently able to swim 50m without stopping or touching the bottom? Are you currently able to swim 50m in the ocean without stopping or touching the bottom? While 56% of people say they are able to swim 50m or more without stopping in a pool or other enclosed body of water, only 38% of people say they are able to swim 50m in the ocean. 47%

4%

3% 1%

21%

21% Unpatrolled Beach

36%

27%

26%

45%

25%

Patrolled Beach During Patrol Hours Only Patrolled Beach, but Not Always During Patrolled Hours Unpatrolled Beach Rock Pool Netted \ Enclosed Pool Can’t Say

25%

13%

Total

Highly Competent Swimmer

Competent Swimmer

Average Swimmer

Weak Swimmer

Unable to Swim

Figure 6

Figure 7

2014–15: USUAL SWIMMING LOCATION

2014–15: SWIMMERS’ ABILITY TO IDENTIFY RIP CURRENTS

Question: Where do you usually go swimming in the ocean? Less than half of the Australian population (45%) usually swim at patrolled beaches during patrol hours, while 25% swim at patrolled beaches outside of patrol hours. More than one in five Australians (21%) usually swim at unpatrolled locations.

Question: Please look at the picture below and identify the location of any rip currents. Only 26% of respondents were able to accurately identify rip currents when shown two images containing rip currents. While 47% of people who reported themselves as highly competent ocean swimmers correctly identified the rip currents, only 13% of people who reported they are unable to swim were able to identify the rip currents.

Reference: SLSA National Coastal Safety Survey 2015

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

10

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


RIP CURRENTS SNAPSHOT 2 0 0 4 –15

ANALYSIS On average, at least 19 people drown per year as a result of rip currents. It’s the highest number of deaths for an individual hazard or activity.

3

RANK

AVERAGE DEATHS PER YEAR

19

1st 0.10

43

16 17

AVERAGE FATALITY RATE

102

PER 100,000 POPULATION

21 8

ACTIVITIES

KEY DEMOGRAPHIC

FATALITIES

210 86%

MEN AGED

15–39

9% 1% Swimming/Wading Attempting a Rescue Watercraft Rock Fishing Rock/Cliff Related Diving Snorkelling Other

14%

fatalities 2004–15

YEARS

Australian residents, Australian-born and overseas-born

WERE MEN

AVERAGE AGE

CONTRIBUTING FACTORS 72%

36

Swimming at unpatrolled locations Attempting a rescue

YEARS

Alcohol/drug toxicity

Percentage of Population (%)

60 50

PARTICIPATION

2014–15: NATIONAL PARTICIPATION IN COASTAL SWIMMING 54%

54%

49%

49% 44%

40

Swimming/Wading

52% 47% 38%

40%

41%

• 2.9 million frequent swimmers (at least once a month)

30 20

• Occasional swimmers average 7 hours per year

10 0

• 8.1 million swimmers

Total

Male

Female

Reference: SLSA National Coastal Safety Survey 2015

NSW/ACT

QLD

VIC

WA

SA

TAS

NT

• Frequent swimmers average 48 hours per year


RISK PERCEPTION

7%

6%

8%

5%

5% 9%

10% 14%

16%

50%

41%

Somewhat Hazardous

Extremely Hazardous Very Hazardous Somewhat Hazardous Not Very Hazardous Not at All Hazardous Can't Say

50%

31%

Not Very or Not at All Hazardous 39%

Extremely Hazardous Very Hazardous Somewhat Hazardous Not Very Hazardous Not at All Hazardous Can't Say

Figure 8

Figure 9

2014–15: HAZARD PERCEPTION OF THE COAST

2014–15: HAZARD PERCEPTION OF THE BEACH

Question: How hazardous do you believe the coast (by coast we mean the ocean and surf zone and the adjacent rocky coast) to be? Half of the Australian population believe the coast to be somewhat hazardous, while 21% of people perceive it to be not very or not at all hazardous.

Question: How hazardous do you believe the beach (by beach we mean the ocean and surf zone and the adjacent sandy beach) to be? Four out of ten (41%) people say the beach is not very or not at all hazardous, while 14% of people believe it to be very or extremely hazardous.

RISK PERCEPTION AND BEHAVIOURAL INSIGHTS swimming and wading) is not seen to be hazardous. In general, occasional (and potentially less experienced) participants in coastal activities see the activity as less hazardous than frequent participants say they perceive the same activity. This lack of understanding about the coastal environment, together with people’s poor swimming ability in the ocean and their low level of adherence to safety procedures, form a dangerous combination that contributes to coastal drowning deaths. Surf Life Saving Australia is undertaking behavioural insights research into high-risk groups to better understand people’s perception of hazards and what motivates them to follow water safety procedures. The intelligence from the research will be used to inform water safety strategies and mitigations as well as communications plans to more effectively influence people’s behaviour. The research will provide a behaviour change framework that will ultimately be used to improve people’s resilience to coastal hazards and reduce drowning deaths among beachgoers and coastal users.

There is a lack of awareness among the public about the hazards posed by the Australian coast. Surf Life Saving Australia’s 2015 National Coastal Safety Survey revealed: • 50% of people say the coast is only somewhat hazardous, while 41% of people say the beach is not very or not at all hazardous. • 70% of people perceive rip currents to be very or extremely hazardous, but only 26% of people are able to correctly identify a rip current. • Only 38% of people say they are able to swim more than 50m in the ocean without stopping or touching the bottom. • Participants in coastal activities do not follow key safety procedures—only 45% of people usually swim at a patrolled beach during patrol hours, while 21% say they usually swim at unpatrolled locations; only 18% of fishers, 42% of watercraft users and 53% of boaters always wear a lifejacket. While certain coastal hazards, such as rip currents, are recognised as dangerous by people, participation in coastal activities where rip currents may be present (such as

Reference: SLSA National Coastal Safety Survey 2015

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

12

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


70%

Activities People Say are Very or Extremely Hazardous Coastal Hazards People Say are Very or Extremely Hazardous

53%

53%

54%

Sharks

Crocodiles

Marine Stinger Creatures

61%

63%

46%

27%

Surfing

Scuba Diving

35% 26%

Rip Currents

Sun Exposure

Tropical Marine Stinger Creatures

Rock Fishing

Waves

Watercraft

17%

Snorkelling

Wading

Boating

10%

Swimming

10%

Land-based Fishing

21% 15%

13%

Figure 10

2014â&#x20AC;&#x201C;15: PERCEPTION OF COASTAL ACTIVITIES Question: How hazardous do you think it is to participate in each of the following activities in Australian coastal areas? How would you rate the following hazards in Australian coastal areas? Rip currents are seen to be very or extremely hazardous by 70% of Australians,

while 35% of people think similarly about waves. Participating in popular coastal activities such as swimming (13%) and wading (10%) is not perceived to be very hazardous. Rock fishing is perceived to be very or extremely hazardous by 46% of people.

Frequent Participants Who Say the Activity is Very or Extremely Hazardous Occasional Participants Who Say the Activity is Very or Extremely Hazardous

56% 50%

49% 45%

46%

45% 37%

36% 30%

23%

20% 12%

11%

Scuba Diving

Snorkelling

Boating

Rock Fishing

6%

Land-based Fishing

Watercraft

7%

Surfing

Wading

5%

Swimming

11%

2%

Figure 11

2014â&#x20AC;&#x201C;15: PERCEPTION OF COASTAL ACTIVITIES BY PARTICIPANTS Question: How hazardous do you think it is to participate in each of the following activities in Australian coastal areas? In general, frequent participants in coastal activities (at least once per month) rate participation in the activity to be more hazardous

SECTION ONE

than occasional participants view the same activity. However, 49% of frequent rock fishers think the activity is very or extremely hazardous, while 56% of occasional participants rate it similarly.

13

COMMUNIT Y AND CAPABILIT Y


C A PA B I LIT Y

S

urf Life Saving (SLS) has significant capability to provide coastal surveillance patrols and aquatic search and rescue (SAR) operations, working in close partnership with police and emergency services. Our lifesavers are equipped with fit-forpurpose equipment designed to operate in hazardous and challenging conditions. Thousands of rescue boards and tubes are used around the flagged patrol areas of our 313 Surf Life Saving clubs. They are supported by 1,499 inflatable rescue boats (IRBs), allowing lifesavers to quickly navigate the surf zone and near-shore environment. Roving surveillance patrols that actively monitor a stretch of coastline near a primary patrolled area are vital to our drowning prevention strategy. Lifesavers undertake these patrols using 414 all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and 4WD vehicles. SLS support operations services extend further beyond the red and yellow flags to provide surveillance and emergency response in isolated and hazardous coastal areas. Agile craft such as 156 rescue water craft (RWC) and eight jet rescue boats (JRBs) allow lifesavers to access white-water areas such as coastal bars and rocky coastlines.

A national fleet of 15 offshore rescue boats (ORBs) and eight rigid-hull inflatable boats (RIBs) further expand the SLS response capability providing longer range surveillance and blue-water rescue services as well as supporting lifesaving in SAR operations. For rapid, isolated or complex rescues, 11 Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopters provide aerial support to lifesavers and further extend our surveillance and SAR capability. These important assets also support police and emergency services in a range of emergency and disaster situations. Critical radio communications support these services via a broad coastal radio network connected to communications and operations centres. The centres coordinate the SLS emergency response system and input data into our SurfCom data management system. These services are expertly delivered and managed through the 49,336 proficient lifesavers (Bronze Medallion and Surf Rescue Certificate holders) across the country. They receive specialised training to industry bestpractice standards under the Australian Qualifications Framework to ensure the community receives reliable service of the highest quality across the nation.

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

14

AUSTRALIAN LIFEGUARD SERVICE The Australian Lifeguard Service (ALS) is a national lifeguard provider of beach and pool lifeguard services to 69 local government councils and land managers all across Australia. It is the largest supplier of professional lifeguards in Australia. Annually, the ALS employs more than 700 full-time, seasonal and casual lifeguards and management staff. ALS patrols are fully integrated into and work alongside Surf Life Savingâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s volunteer beach patrol services, support operations services, 24-hour emergency response systems and strategically located Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter Services. ALS patrols vary from single-day patrols on peak periods and public holidays (e.g. Australia Day) to private providers to 365day services for large local governments. They are a crucial component in offering a seamless service to the community during peak periods. A number of local councils around Australia maintain lifeguard services. Statistics for those services have not been included in this report.

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


Figure 12

2014â&#x20AC;&#x201C;15: SURF LIFE SAVING CLUBS There are 313 clubs around Australia: 129 in New South Wales, 59 in Queensland, 57 in Victoria, 30 in Western Australia, 21 in South Australia, 14 in Tasmania and 3 in Northern Territory.

Darwin

3 59 30 21

Brisbane

129

Perth Adelaide

57 0

1,000km

Canberra

Melbourne

SCALE

14 Hobart

SECTION ONE

15

COMMUNIT Y AND CAPABILIT Y

Sydney


C A PA B I LIT Y

Figure 13

2014â&#x20AC;&#x201C;15: AUSTRALIAN LIFEGUARD SERVICE The Australian Lifeguard Service provides 226 lifeguard services around Australia: 84 in New South Wales, 80 in Queensland, 39 in Victoria, 17 in Western Australia, 2 in South Australia, 1 in Tasmania and 3 in Northern Territory.

Darwin

3 80 17 2

Brisbane

84

Perth Adelaide

Canberra

39 0

1,000km

Melbourne

SCALE

1 Hobart

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

16

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015

Sydney


Figure 14

2014â&#x20AC;&#x201C;15: SLS MAJOR ASSET LOCATION AND SERVICE RANGE SLS maintains a fleet of 156 rescue water craft in 63 local government areas, as well as 8 jet rescue boats, 8 rigid-hull inflatable boats, 15 offshore rescue boats and 11 helicopters. Their locations and service ranges are depicted on this map.

Rescue Water Craft (RWC) Jet Rescue Boat (JRB) Darwin

Rigid-hull Inflatable Boat (RIB) Offshore Rescue Boat (ORB) Helicopter

Brisbane

Perth Adelaide Canberra

0

1,000km

Melbourne

SCALE

Hobart

SECTION ONE

17

COMMUNIT Y AND CAPABILIT Y

Sydney


M E M B E R S H I P C A PAC IT Y

19,403

Bronze Medallion Surf Rescue Certificate

17,973

8,844

7,996

6,260

5,471

4,889

4,187

4,115 2,431

1,784

1,601

2,600

2,365 482

NSW

QLD

VIC

WA

SA

656 154

100 21

TAS

NT

810 NSW

QLD

VIC

WA

SA

TAS

150 NT

Figure 15

Figure 16

2014–15: PROFICIENT LIFESAVERS

2014–15: PATROLLING LIFESAVERS

There were a total of 38,748 proficient Bronze Medallion holders and 10,588 proficient Surf Rescue Certification holders for the entire 2014–15 season.

There were a total of 42,956 members who performed a patrol during the 2014–15 season.

5,805

Proficient IRB Driver Proficient IRB Crew

Advanced Resuscitation Techniques Apply First Aid 6,250 5,145

3,305

3,077

1,681

3,349 2,757

1,960 877

1,067 478

NSW

QLD

VIC

WA

1,671 1,247

875 403

SA

140

301

TAS

16

937 877

798 778 309 104

26 NT

NSW

QLD

VIC

WA

SA

TAS

39

16

NT

Figure 17

Figure 18

2014–15: INFLATABLE RESCUE BOAT OPERATORS

2014–15: FIRST AID QUALIFICATIONS

There were 6,672 proficient inflatable rescue boat (IRB) drivers and 13,339 proficient IRB crew for the entire 2014–15 season.

There were a total of 11,516 Apply First Aid and 12,761 Advanced Resuscitation Techniques certificate holders who were proficient for the entire 2014–15 season.

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

18

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


B O AT I N G S N A P S H O T 2 0 0 4 –15

ANALYSIS On average, at least 16 people drown per year as a result of boating. It’s the second highest number of deaths for an individual activity.

4

RANK

2nd AVERAGE DEATHS PER YEAR

16

38

16 23

42

AVERAGE FATALITY RATE

0.07

33

PER 100,000 POPULATION

LOCATION

19

KEY DEMOGRAPHIC

FATALITIES

175

MEN AGED

40–69

WA

9%

NSW

24% 2%

11%

fatalities 2004–15

YEARS

NT

TAS

91%

Australian residents, Australian-born

WERE MEN

SA

13%

CONTRIBUTING FACTORS

QLD

22%

AVERAGE AGE

No lifejacket usage

50

Boating alone VIC

19%

Boating at night

YEARS

Percentage of Population (%)

Alcohol/drug toxicity

50 45 40 35 30 25 20 15 10 5 0

PARTICIPATION

2014–15: NATIONAL PARTICIPATION IN COASTAL BOATING 45%

• 3 million total boaters • 0.8 million frequent boaters (at least once a month) • Occasional boaters average 17 hours per year

23% 18%

19%

18%

19%

18% 13%

Total

Male

Female

Reference: SLSA National Coastal Safety Survey 2015

NSW/ACT

QLD

VIC

18% 12%

WA

SA

• Frequent boaters average 110 hours per year TAS

NT


RESCUES

Figure 19

2014–15: RESCUES PER LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA (LGA) SLS lifesavers, lifeguards and support service personnel performed rescues across 99 LGAs around Australia.

Key to Rescues per LGA 1 - 9 Rescues

Darwin

10 - 49 Rescues 50 - 149 Rescues 150 - 449 Rescues > 450 Rescues

302 3,644 1,205 244

Brisbane

6,741

Perth

Sydney

Adelaide

498 0

1,000km

Canberra Melbourne

SCALE

56

Hobart

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

20

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


6,741

648,831

425,106 3,644

1,205 498 NSW

QLD

VIC

113,442 244

WA

SA

56 TAS

44,503

302 NT

NSW

QLD

VIC

WA

19,003 SA

696

3,509

TAS

NT

Figure 20

Figure 21

2014–15: RESCUES PER STATE

2014–15: PREVENTATIVE ACTIONS PER STATE

SLS lifesavers, lifeguards and support service personnel performed 12,690 rescues during 2014–15.

SLS lifesavers, lifeguards and support service personnel performed 1,255,090 preventative actions during 2014–15.

SECTION ONE

21

COMMUNIT Y AND CAPABILIT Y


RESCUES

Figure 22

2014â&#x20AC;&#x201C;15: EMERGENCY RESPONSE PER LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA (LGA) SLS support service personnel responded to requests for assistance from emergency services across 95 LGAs around Australia.

Key to Emergency Responses per LGA 1- 2 Emergency Responses Darwin

3- 5 Emergency Responses 6- 13 Emergency Responses 14- 24 Emergency Responses >25 Emergency Responses

9 101 18 65

Brisbane

505

Perth

Sydney

Adelaide

Canberra

0

1,000km

270 Melbourne

SCALE

37 Hobart

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

22

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


Figure 23

2004â&#x20AC;&#x201C;15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS PER LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA (LGA) During 2004 to 2015, there were 1,031 drowning deaths in 144 LGAs throughout Australia.

Key to Coastal Drowning Deaths per LGA 1- 4 Drowning Deaths Darwin

5-9 Drowning Deaths 10-16 Drowning Deaths 17-30 Drowning Deaths > 31 Drowning Deaths

21 171

141 83

Brisbane

406

Perth

Sydney

Adelaide

Canberra

0

1,000km

157 Melbourne

SCALE

51

Hobart

SECTION ONE

23

COMMUNIT Y AND CAPABILIT Y


D R O W N I N G A N A LY S I S SECTION T WO

86%

102 COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

MALE

14%

FEMALE

CONTRIBUTING FACTORS

Rip Currents

16%

Medical Condition or Injury

27%

Alcohol/Drugs

9%


N AT I O N A L O V E R V I E W

0.6 No COD Listed

COD Listed 113

118 0.5

100

Number (n)

95

98 89

89

80

102

85

89

83

69

60

0.4 0.3

40

0.2

20

0.1

0

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

120

0

2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

2009-10

2010-11

2011-12

2012-13

2013-14

2014-15

Figure 24

2004–15: 11-YEAR TREND OF NATIONAL COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS National coastal drowning death numbers and crude drowning rates 2004–15. The 11-year average rate per 100,000 population is 0.43 and the number is 94, while the rate for 2014–15 is 0.43 and the number is 102.

0.20

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

0.18 0.16 0.14 0.12

Swimming/Wading Boating Rock Fishing Watercraft Attempting a Rescue Diving Snorkelling Rock/Cliff Related Other Unknown

0.10 0.08 0.06 0.04 0.02 0.00 2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

2009-10

2010-11

2011-12

2012-13

2013-14

2014-15

Figure 25

2004–15: 11-YEAR COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY The national rates of activity types being undertaken when coastal drowning deaths occur vary over time. The rates of rock fishing (0.05 vs. 0.06 average rate per 100,000 pop.) and attempting a rescue (0.004 vs. 0.02 average rate per 100,000 pop.) activities are below the 11-year average rate. Swimming and wading (0.14 rate per 100,000 pop.), snorkelling (0.02 rate per 100,000 pop.) and other activities (0.02 rate per 100,000 pop.)

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

have rates equal to the 11-year averages. Boating (0.08 vs. 0.07 average rate per 100,000 pop.), watercraft (0.04 vs. 0.03 rate per 100,000 pop.), diving (0.03 vs. 0.02 average rate per 100,000 pop.) and rock/cliff related (0.02 vs. 0.01 rate per 100,000 pop.) activities have a higher rate this year than the 11-year average. Other activities include vehicular events, plane crash, beach fishing and falls.

26

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


35

Number (n)

0.8

Crude Drowning Rate per 100,000

0.7

Crude Drowning Deaths (n)

30

0.6

25

0.5

20

0.4

15

0.3

10

0.2

5

0.1

0

NSW

QLD

VIC

WA

SA

TAS

NT

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

40

0.0

Figure 26

2014–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY STATE Of the 102 coastal drowning deaths, 37 (36%) occurred in NSW, 19 (19%) in Qld, 18 (18%) in Vic, 14 (14%) in WA, 12 (12%) in SA, 2 (2%) in Tas, and zero in NT.

0.08

16

Female 0.07 Male

12

0.06

10

0.05

8

0.04

6

0.03

4

0.02

2

0.01

0

0

0-4

5-9

10-14

15-19

20-24

25-29

30-34

35-39

40-44

45-49

50-54

55-59

60-64

65-69

Figure 27

2014–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY AGE GROUP AND SEX The age group representing the highest rate of fatalities is 45–49 years (n=15, 0.06 rate per 100,000 pop.). Eighty-eight fatalities (86%) were male.

SECTION T WO

27

DROWNING ANALYSIS

70-74

75-79

80-84

85+ unknown

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

Number (n)

14


N AT I O N A L O V E R V I E W

4% 5%

4% 3%

5% 1%

16%

33%

5%

33%

7%

Swimming/ Wading

9%

13%

19%

56%

Swimming/Wading Boating Rock Fishing Watercraft Diving Snorkelling Rock/Cliff Related Other Attempting a Rescue Unknown

Beach

56%

22%

Beach Rock/Cliff Offshore Bay Marina/Jetty

Figure 28

Figure 29

2014–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY (N=102)

2014–15: LOCATION OF COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS (N=102)

The majority of coastal drowning deaths occurred when an individual was participating in swimming or wading (n=34, 33%), boating (n=19, 19%), rock fishing (n=13, 13%), using non-powered watercraft (n=9, 9%) or scuba diving (n=7, 7%).

The majority of coastal drowning deaths occurred at a beach (n=57), at a rock/cliff location (n=22) and offshore (n=16). When compared to last year (2013–14), the percentages illustrate a decrease in offshore (16% from 33%) and rock/cliff locations (22% from 25%) and an increase in drowning deaths in beach (56% from 38%) and bay (4% from 0%) locations. There were, again, no drowning deaths between the flags.

BLACKSPOTS A blackspot is an area with a high concentration of coastal/ ocean incidents and a high probability/risk of ongoing reoccurrence. SLSA has identified the local government areas (LGAs) listed below as blackspots. These LGAs are priorities for conducting coastal risk assessments and implementing drowning prevention activities via the Beach Drowning Blackspot Reduction Program.

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

New South Wales: Bega Valley Shire, Byron Shire, City of Coffs Harbour, City of Gosford, City of Randwick, City of Shoalhaven, City of Wollongong, Pittwater, Sutherland Shire, Warringah, Waverley, Wyong Shire Northern Territory: City of Darwin Queensland: Cairns Region, City of Gold Coast, Noosa Shire, Redland City, Sunshine Coast South Australia: City of Victor Harbor Tasmania: City of Clarence Victoria: City of Greater Geelong, Mornington Peninsula Shire, Bass Coast Shire, Surf Coast Shire Western Australia: City of Stirling

28

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


15

16 14 12 Percentage (%)

Percentage (%)

12 9 6

10 8 6 4

3

11:01pm-12am

10:01pm-11pm

8:01pm-9pm

9:01pm-10pm

7:01pm-8pm

6:01pm-7pm

5:01pm-6pm

4:01pm-5pm

3:01pm-4pm

2:01pm-3pm

1:01pm-2pm

12:01pm-1pm

10:01am-11am

11:01am-12pm

8:01am-9am

9:01am-10am

7:01am-8am

6:01am-7am

5:01am-6am

4:01am-5am

3:01am-4am

2:01am-3am

1:01am-2am

12:01am-1 am

0

June

May

April

March

February

January

December

November

October

September

August

July

2 0

Figure 30

Figure 31

2014–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY MONTH (N=102)

2014–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY TIME (N=84)*

The highest number of coastal drownings occurred in the month of January (n=14); this is followed by December, February and March (n=10). Sixty-eight occurred outside of the summer months. Shading denotes season.

There are currently 84 coastal drowning deaths (82% of the total) with known times. Approximately one third of these fatalities occurred between 1:01pm and 3pm (n=22). * Only incidents with known times are represented.

7%

4%

28%

32%

41%

28%

Greater than 5km 30%

32%

41%

Greater than 50km

Greater than 5km 1km to 5km Less than 1km

28%

Greater than 50km Less than 10km 10km to 50km International Unknown

Figure 32

Figure 33

2014–15: DISTANCE FROM DROWNING LOCATION TO A LIFESAVING SERVICE (N=102)

2014–15: DISTANCE FROM RESIDENCE TO DROWNING LOCATION (N=102)

Forty-two individuals (41%) drowned further than 5km from the nearest lifesaving club. No coastal drowning deaths occurred between the red and yellow flags.

Thirty-three individuals (32%) lived further than 50km from the drowning location, and 7 coastal drowning deaths (7%) involved international tourists.

SECTION T WO

29

DROWNING ANALYSIS


3 2 2 2

D R O W N I N G L O C AT I O N M A P

2

2 0 0 4 –15

2

2 2

4

141

2

2

2

2

2

3

3

2

PERTH 2 2 3

2

2

2 2

2 2 2

4

Attempting a Rescue Boating Diving Rock Fishing Rock/Cliff Related Snorkelling Swimming/Wading Watercraft Other Unknown Multiple instances per activity at the same location

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

3

2

3

KEY TO DROWNING ACTIVITY

3

3

0

1,000km

SCALE

30

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015

DARWIN


6 2

2 2

21

4 2

171 2

2 2

7

2 2

3 3 2

BRISBANE

83

2 5 2 7

4 2 2 6

2

406

2 2

2

2 2

ADELAIDE

3

5

2 2 2

CANBERRA

MELBOURNE

5

2 4 2 5 2

3 2

2

2 4 9 4 2

5

2 2

8 3 2 5 3 4 2 4

4 2 4 2 2

2

3 2 2 4 2 3 2

2 3 3

2

HOBART 2 2

8 3 2

2

2 2

10 2 3 2 4 3 7 2 12 9 6 7 3 3 19 5 4 4 2 2 9 8 4

SYDNEY

157

2 3

3 2 2

2 2 2 2 3 2 2 8 2 2 2 2 2 3 4

8 2

2

2

3 2 3 3

2

2 3 3

2

51

3

4

4

2 2 3

3

2

2 5

3

3 2

2 8 3 4

8 15 2


NEW SOUTH WALE S

0.7

50

0.6 45 39 35

46

0.5

40

37 0.4

35 29

29

0.3

23

20

0.2

2014-15

2013-14

2012-13

2011-12

2010-11

2009-10

2008-09

0.0

2007-08

0

2006-07

0.1 2005-06

10

2004-05

Number (n)

40 30

48

3%

3%

5%

3% 5%

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

60

38%

38%

8%

Swimming/Wading Rock Fishing Boating Watercraft Diving Other Rock/Cliff Related Snorkelling Unknown

Swimming/ Wading

16%

19%

Figure 34

Figure 35

2004–15: 11-YEAR TREND OF NEW SOUTH WALES COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

2014–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY (N=37)

In 2014–15, there were 37 coastal drowning deaths or a rate of 0.49 per 100,000 population in New South Wales (NSW). From 2004 to 2015, there has been an average number of 37 coastal drowning deaths per year, which is an 11-year average rate of 0.52 per 100,000 pop.

The majority of coastal drowning deaths in NSW occurred when an individual was participating in swimming and wading (n=14, 38%), rock fishing (n=7, 19%), boating (n=6, 16%) or watercraft (n=3, 8%).

0.30

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

0.25 0.20 Swimming/Wading Rock Fishing Boating Watercraft Attempting a Rescue Diving Rock/Cliff Related Other Snorkelling Unknown

0.15 0.10 0.05 0.00 2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

2009-10

2010-11

2011-12

2012-13

2013-14

2014-15

Figure 36

2004–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY cliff related activities other than fishing (0.01 per 100,000 pop.) and snorkelling (0.01 per 100,000 pop.). Activities that have a rate greater than the 11-year average are boating (0.08 vs. 0.05 average rate per 100,000 pop.) and diving (0.03 vs. 0.02 average rate per 100,000 pop.). There were no incidents related to attempting a rescue in 2014–15.

The rates of activity types being undertaken when coastal drowning deaths occur vary over time in NSW. The rock fishing activity rate is less than the 11-year average (0.09 vs. 0.11 average rate per 100,000 pop.) this year. Activities that have a rate equal to the 11-year average are swimming and wading (0.18 per 100,000 pop.), watercraft (0.04 per 100,000 pop.), rock/

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

32

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


CASE STUDY: ROCK FISHING

Figure 37

2004–15: NEW SOUTH WALES COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS 4

2 6 2 3 2 2

2 2 2 2 3 2 2 8 2 2 2 2 2 3 4

10 2 3 2 4 3 7 2 12 9 6 7 3 3 19 5 4 4 2 2 9 8 4

SYDNEY CANBERRA

2 4 9 4 2

8 3 2

2 4 2 4

3

2 2

2

Attempting a Rescue Boating Diving Rock Fishing Rock/Cliff Related Snorkelling Swimming/Wading Watercraft Other Unknown Multiple instances per activity at the same location

14 12

12 11

10 9

8

Rip currents

Surf education programs

Watercraft

Enhancing triple zero (000) awareness Improve effective emergency response

2

Boating

Dangerous surf warnings

0

6

8

8

7

7

6

4

2005-06

2004-05

4

4

2008-09

INTERVENTION

2007-08

ISSUE

9

2006-07

Number (n)

OTHER NEW SOUTH WALES COASTAL SAFETY ISSUES

2014-15

2

3 2 3 3

2013-14

2

2012-13

4 2

2 3

2011-12

2

2 8 3 4

2010-11

4

2009-10

2 5

Fishing is one of the most popular sports in New South Wales (NSW). About 656,000 people in NSW/ACT fish at least once a year (SLSA NCSS, 2015). Rock fishers make up a small, but passionate, sector of the fishing community. While rock fishing is an enjoyable pastime, unfortunately, it also poses many dangers. Surf Life Saving Australia (SLSA) partnered with the University of New South Wales in the development of the Research Review of Rock Fishing in New South Wales. Three recommendations were presented as a result of the research. 1. Develop a state-wide strategic plan for rock fishing safety in NSW, including the delegation of responsibilities to key agencies, stakeholders and non-government organisations, and the development of clear objectives and key performance indicators. 2. Develop, implement and assess a public education and communication campaign, incorporated into the state-wide strategy to promote safe rock fishing practices and support the introduction of legislation. 3. Legislate the mandatory wearing of lifejackets while rock fishing at coastal locations in NSW. In July 2015, the NSW coroner made the same recommendations after an inquest into nine NSW rockfishing deaths that have occurred since 2012.

Figure 38

2004–15: ROCK FISHING RELATED DROWNING DEATHS IN NSW There have been 85 rock fishing drowning deaths in NSW since 2004, an average of 7.7 per year. Males make up 94% of the deaths, and the average age of individuals is 46 years.

SECTION T WO

33

DROWNING ANALYSIS


QUEENSLAND

30

0.6

25

0.5

11% 5%

Number (n)

20

0.4 19

18

17

15 10

16

17

12

11

0.3

15 13

0.2 9

5

0.1

0

0.0

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

24

5%

37%

37%

11%

Swimming/Wading Boating Diving Snorkelling Watercraft Attempting a Rescue Unknown

Swimming/ Wading

2014-15

2013-14

2012-13

2011-12

2010-11

2009-10

2008-09

2007-08

2006-07

2004-05

2005-06

11% 21%

Figure 39

Figure 40

2004–15: 11-YEAR TREND OF QUEENSLAND COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

2014–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY (N=19)

In 2014–15, there were 19 coastal drowning deaths or a rate of 0.40 per 100,000 population in Queensland (Qld). From 2004 to 2015, there has been an average number of 16 coastal drowning deaths per year, which is an average rate of 0.36 per 100,000 pop.

The majority of coastal drowning deaths in Qld occurred when an individual was swimming and wading (n=7, 37%), boating (n=4, 21%), and diving or snorkelling (each n=2, 11%).

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

0.25

0.20

0.15

Swimming/Wading Boating Snorkelling Watercraft Attempting a Rescue Diving Rock Fishing Other Rock/Cliff Related Unknown

0.10

0.05

0.00 2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

2009-10

2010-11

2011-12

2012-13

2013-14

2014-15

Figure 41

2004–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY The rates of activity types being undertaken when coastal drowning deaths occur vary over time in Qld. The watercraft activity rate is less than the 11-year average (0.02 vs. 0.04 average rate per 100,000 pop.) this year. Activities that have a rate equal to the 11-year average are snorkelling (0.04 per 100,000 pop.) and attempting a rescue (0.02 per 100,000 pop.). Activities that

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

have a rate greater than the 11-year average are swimming and wading (0.15 vs. 0.13 average rate per 100,00 pop.), boating (0.08 vs. 0.07 average rate per 100,000 pop.) and diving (0.04 vs. 0.01 average rate per 100,000 pop.). There were no incidents related to rock fishing or other rock/cliff-related activities in 2014–15.

34

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


Figure 42

CASE STUDY: SWIMMING AND WADING

2004–15: QUEENSLAND COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

2

During 2014–15, drowning while swimming and wading represented 37% of all coastal drowning deaths in Queensland. The rip current hazard is the top national safety agenda issue and rip currents were known to be contributory factors in at least 53% of all swimming and wading coastal drowning deaths in Queensland in 2004–15. To address this issue, Surf Life Saving Queensland (SLSQ) has identified the need to undertake risk assessments in drowning blackspot local government areas (LGA). The assessments include identifying coastal risks and signage requirements and providing recommendations for mitigation strategies for threats to public safety, lifesaving services, rescue equipment, training, communications, emergency response and community education. Following recommendations from coastal risk assessments, SLSQ has implemented increased lifesaving services at locations identified as areas of need, for example Green Island on the Great Barrier Reef. SLSQ also works closely with the accommodation providers in known blackspot locations to provide visitors with water safety information.

Attempting a Rescue Boating Diving Rock Fishing Rock/Cliff Related Snorkelling Swimming/Wading Watercraft Other Unknown Multiple instances per activity at the same location

6 2

2 2 4 2

18 Swimming/Wading

16

Known Rip Currents

Number (n)

14

2

12 10 8 6 4

2

2014-15

2013-14

2012-13

2011-12

2010-11

2009-10

2008-09

3 3 2

2007-08

2 2

BRISBANE 2 5 2 7

0

7

2006-07

2

2005-06

3 2

2004-05

2

2

3 8 15 2

Figure 43

2004–15: SWIMMING AND WADING RELATED DROWNING DEATHS IN QUEENSLAND

OTHER QUEENSLAND COASTAL SAFETY ISSUES

Issue

Intervention

Diving/Snorkelling

Charter boat awareness program Coastal risk assessments

Unpatrolled locations

Emergency response beacons

Inter-state and international tourists

Airport greeting programs

SECTION T WO

There have been 60 swimming and wading related drowning deaths in Queensland since 2004, which is an average of 5.5 per year. Rip currents were known to be contributory factors in at least 32 (53%) of these deaths.

35

DROWNING ANALYSIS


VICTORIA

25

0.45 23

20

0.35 16

15

14

11

10

11

18 0.30 0.25

12

0.20 10

10

0.15 0.10

5

33%

11%

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

17

15 Number (n)

6% 6%

0.40

33%

11%

Boating Swimming/Wading Diving Rock Fishing Watercraft Other Unknown

Boating

2014-15

2013-14

2012-13

2011-12

2010-11

2009-10

2008-09

2007-08

2006-07

2004-05

0

2005-06

0.05

17%

17%

0.00

Figure 44

Figure 45

2004–15: 11-YEAR TREND OF VICTORIAN COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

2014–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY (N=18)

In 2014–15, there were 18 coastal drowning deaths or a rate of 0.30 per 100,000 population in Victoria (Vic). From 2004 to 2015, there has been an average number of 14 coastal drowning deaths per year, which is an average rate of 0.26 per 100,000 pop.

The majority of coastal drowning deaths in Vic occurred when an individual was boating (n=6, 33%), swimming and wading (n=3, 17%), and diving (n=3, 17%).

0.16

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

0.14 0.12 0.10

Swimming/Wading Boating Watercraft Rock Fishing Diving Other Attempting a Rescue Rock/Cliff Related Snorkelling Unknown

0.08 0.06 0.04 0.02 0.00 2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

2009-10

2010-11

2011-12

2012-13

2013-14

2014-15

Figure 46

2004–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY The rates of activity types undertaken when coastal drowning deaths occur vary over time in Vic. The swimming and wading activity rate is less than the 11-year average (0.05 vs. 0.08 average rate per 100,000 pop.) this year. Activities that have a rate greater than the 11-year average are boating (0.10 vs. 0.05 average rate per 100,000 pop.), watercraft (0.03 vs. 0.02 average

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

rate per 100,000 pop.), rock fishing (0.03 vs. 0.02 average rate per 100,000 pop.) and diving (0.05 vs. 0.02 average rate per 100,000 pop.). There were no incidents related to attempting a rescue, rock/cliff related activities other than rock fishing, or snorkelling activities in 2014–15.

36

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


Figure 47

CASE STUDY: LIFEJACKETS AND BOATING

2004–15: VICTORIAN COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

2

MELBOURNE 2 4 2 5 3 2

2

5

2 2

2

Drowning while participating in boating represented 33% of all coastal drowning deaths in Victoria in 2014–15, and boating is the second highest number of coastal deaths for an activity in Australia. In most instances, the victim was not wearing a lifejacket. In 2005, regulation was introduced in Victoria to make wearing lifejackets compulsory, and a study by Bugeja et al (2014) reported a significant reduction in drowning deaths following its introduction. However, the lack of lifejacket use continues to be a contributing factor in coastal boating drowning deaths. Surf Life Saving Australia is a signatory to the International Lifejacket Principles, which ‘recognise the importance of promoting the wearing of lifejackets when boating’. Through the Play it Safe by the Water program and other initiatives, Life Saving Victoria (LSV) works collaboratively with Maritime Safety Victoria to promote lifejacket usage to Victorians. In addition, LSV members provide role modelling for the community—it is compulsory for lifesavers and lifeguards to wear lifejackets while operating inflatable rescue boats or rescue watercraft.

Attempting a Rescue Boating Diving Rock Fishing Rock/Cliff Related Snorkelling Swimming/Wading Watercraft Other Unknown Multiple instances per activity at the same location

8 3 2 5 3 4 2 4

2

3 2 2 2 3 3

4 2 3 2

OTHER VICTORIAN COASTAL SAFETY ISSUES 7

Issue

Intervention

Rip currents

Open Water Learning Experience

Watercraft

Promoting lifejacket usage

Inconsistent or incomplete coastal safety signage

Coastal risk assessments, including recommendations about signage

Rock fishing

Promoting lifejacket usage and key safety messages

6

3

2

4

3 2

2014-15

2010-11

2009-10

2008-09

1 2006-07

2005-06

1

2011-12

1

Play it Safe by the Water program Grey Medallion

4

2013-14

4

3

2012-13

5

4

2007-08

Number (n)

5

2004-05

60+ year olds

6

Figure 48

2004–15: BOATING RELATED DROWNING DEATHS IN VICTORIA There have been 33 boating related drowning deaths in Victoria since 2004, which is an average of three per year. Males make up 97% of the deaths, and the average age of individuals is 53 years.

SECTION T WO

37

DROWNING ANALYSIS


WESTERN AUSTR ALIA

30

1.0

14%

0.9 25

0.8 0.7

20 Number (n)

0.6 15

15

0.5 14 0.4

15 13

10

12

11

10

11

0.3

8

8

0.2

5

36%

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

24

36%

21%

Swimming/ Wading

2014-15

2013-14

2012-13

2011-12

2010-11

2009-10

2008-09

2007-08

2006-07

2004-05

0

2005-06

0.1

Swimming/Wading Rock Fishing Watercraft Rock/Cliff Related

0.0

29%

Figure 49

Figure 50

2004–15: 11-YEAR TREND OF WESTERN AUSTRALIAN COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

2014–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY (N=14)

In 2014–15, there were 14 coastal drowning deaths or a rate of 0.54 per 100,000 population in Western Australia (WA). From 2004 to 2015, there has been an average number of 13 coastal drowning deaths per year, which is an average rate of 0.40 per 100,000 pop.

The majority of coastal drowning deaths in WA occurred when an individual was swimming and wading (n=5, 36%), rock fishing (n=4, 29%), or using non-powered watercraft (n=3, 21%).

0.40

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

0.35 0.30 0.25

Swimming/Wading Rock Fishing Boating Snorkelling Watercraft Rock/Cliff Related Diving Other Attempting a Rescue Unknown

0.20 0.15 0.10 0.05 0.00 2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

2009-10

2010-11

2011-12

2012-13

2013-14

2014-15

Figure 51

2004–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY The rates of activity types being undertaken when coastal drowning deaths occur vary over time in WA. Activities that have a rate greater than the 11-year average are swimming and wading (0.19 vs. 0.15 average rate per 100,000 pop.), rock fishing (0.15 vs. 0.12 average rate per 100,000 pop.), watercraft (0.12 vs. 0.06

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

average rate per 100,000 pop.) and rock/cliff related activities other than rock fishing (0.08 vs. 0.04 average rate per 100,000 pop.). There were no incidents related to boating, snorkelling, diving or attempting a rescue activities in 2014–15.

38

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


Figure 52

CASE STUDY: SURFING AND OTHER WATERCRAFT

2004–15: WESTERN AUSTRALIAN COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

Surfing and using other watercraft are popular activities in Western Australia (WA), The Surf Life Saving Australia National Coastal Safety Survey 2015 reported that 12% of the WA population surf and 7% use other watercraft. The Cape Regions on the state’s south-western coast is a popular tourist and surfing destination. However, there have been seven fatalities while surfing or using watercraft in that region between 2004 and 2015. Some of the preferred surfing locations are remote or very remote, which can be an influencing factor in the success of any rescue or medical emergency. Three off-duty Australian Lifeguard Service WA lifeguards were awarded the Surf Life Saving Australia Rescue of the Month for December 2014. In 1.8 m swell, they rescued a body boarder at Cape Naturaliste who required spinal management and was transported via ambulance to hospital. This incident highlights the importance of having trained personnel on site to provide appropriate emergency care. Surf Life Saving Western Australia (SLSWA) is focused on enhancing lifesaving services to meet changing community needs. SLSWA support services and lifeguard services are key to providing effective emergency response in remote areas.

Attempting a Rescue Boating Diving Rock Fishing Rock/Cliff Related Snorkelling Swimming/Wading Watercraft Other Unknown Multiple instances per activity at the same location

2

2 2

4

2

2

2

2

2

3

2

15% 3

3

PERTH 2 2 3

3

2

3

46%

2

2

2 2 2

Surfing

2

38%

4

Body boarding Kite/Wind surfing

3

OTHER WESTERN AUSTRALIAN COASTAL SAFETY ISSUES

Issue

Intervention

Swimming and wading

BeachSAFE education and capacity building programs

Rock fishing

Promoting the Emergency Preparedness Principle of BeachSAFE Maintaining capability to provide emergency response

SECTION T WO

Figure 53

2004–2015: WATERCRAFT RELATED DROWNING DEATHS IN WA (N=13) There have been 13 watercraft related drowning deaths in WA since 2004, which is an average of 1.2 per year. Most of the watercraft related deaths are a result of surfing (n=6, 46%).

39

DROWNING ANALYSIS


SOUTH AUSTR ALIA

14

0.9 13 12 11 9

0.5 7

6

7

0.4

6

0.3

4

4

0.2

3

2

2014-15

2013-14

2012-13

2011-12

2010-11

2008-09

2007-08

2006-07

2005-06

17%

33%

33% Swimming/ Wading

17%

0.1

2 2004-05

0

0.7 0.6

9

2009-10

Number (n)

10 8

8%

0.8

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

12

0.0

Swimming/Wading Boating Snorkelling Other Rock/Cliff Related

25%

Figure 54

Figure 55

2004–15: 11-YEAR TREND OF SOUTH AUSTRALIAN COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

2014–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY (N=12)

In 2014–15, there were 12 coastal drowning deaths or a rate of 0.70 per 100,000 population in South Australia (SA). From 2004 to 2015, there has been an average number of 8 coastal drowning deaths per year, which is an average rate of 0.47 per 100,000 pop.

The majority of coastal drowning deaths in SA occurred when an individual was swimming and wading (n=4, 33%), boating (n=3, 25%), or snorkelling (n=2, 17%).

0.45

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

0.40 0.35 0.30 Swimming/Wading Boating Watercraft Rock/Cliff Related Other Diving Snorkelling Attempting a Rescue Rock Fishing Unknown

0.25 0.20 0.15 0.10 0.05 0.00 2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

2009-10

2010-11

2011-12

2012-13

2013-14

2014-15

Figure 56

2004–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY The rates of activity types being undertaken when coastal drowning deaths occur vary over time in SA. Activities that have a rate greater than the 11-year average are swimming and wading (0.24 vs. 0.17 average rate per 100,000 pop.), boating (0.18 vs. 0.12 average rate per 100,000 pop.), rock/cliff related activities

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

other than rock fishing (0.06 vs. 0.03 average rate per 100,000 pop.) and snorkelling (0.12 vs. 0.06 average rate per 100,000 pop.). There were no incidents related to watercraft, diving, attempting a rescue, or rock fishing activities in 2014–15.

40

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


Figure 57

CASE STUDY: BOATING

2004–15: SOUTH AUSTRALIAN COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

During 2014–15, drowning while boating represented 25% of all coastal drowning deaths in South Australia, and boating is the second highest number of deaths for an individual activity in South Australia. In most instances the victim was not wearing a lifejacket. Currently, South Australia does not have legislation mandating the use of lifejackets while boating, although using lifejackets is encouraged. Surf Life Saving Australia (SLSA) is a signatory to the International Lifejacket Wear Principles, which report that ‘the single greatest challenge facing the recreational boating safety community today is increasing the lifejacket wear rate among the boating public’. SLSA recommends that boaters always wear lifejackets when travelling in small open boats and promotes this message to the public. SLSA’s National Coastal Safety Survey 2015 revealed that only 53% of boaters always wear a lifejacket. SLSA has identified the need for a national campaign to raise awareness about lifejacket usage among boaters. A current research project investigating coastal boaters’ behaviour and attitudes will provide key behavioural insights to inform the campaign and other public education initiatives.

2 2 8 2 2 2

ADELAIDE 5

2

2 3 2 2

2

5

2 2

OTHER SOUTH AUSTRALIAN COASTAL SAFETY ISSUES

5

Intervention

Swimming and wading

Community education programs Vacation swimming programs

Drowning in regional locations

Extend lifesaving services

Number (n)

Issue

6 5

4

4

4

3 2

2011-12

2010-11

2009-10

2008-09

2007-08

1 2006-07

1 2005-06

0

3

2

2004-05

1

3

2014-15

3

2013-14

2

2012-13

2

Attempting a Rescue Boating Diving Rock Fishing Rock/Cliff Related Snorkelling Swimming/Wading Watercraft Other Unknown Multiple instances per activity at the same location

Figure 58

2004–15: BOATING RELATED DROWNING DEATHS IN SOUTH AUSTRALIA There have been 23 boating related drowning deaths in SA since 2004, which is an average of two per year. Males make up 91% of the deaths, and the average age of individuals is 48 years.

SECTION T WO

41

DROWNING ANALYSIS


TA S M A N I A

9

1.8 8

1.6

8

7

1.4

6

1.2

5

5

5

5

1.0

5

4

4

3

0.8

4

0.6

3

2

2

2

0.4 0.2

1 0

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

Number (n)

8

2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

2009-10

2010-11

2011-12

2012-13

2013-14

2014-15

0.0

Figure 59

2004–15: 11-YEAR TREND OF TASMANIAN COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS In 2014–15, there were 2 coastal drowning deaths or a rate of 0.39 per 100,000 population in Tasmania (Tas). From 2004 to 2015, there has been an average number of 5 coastal drowning deaths per year, which is an average rate of 0.92 per 100,000 pop.

1.2

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

1.0 0.8 Boating Swimming/Wading Rock Fishing Diving Watercraft Other Rock/Cliff Related Snorkelling Attempting a Rescue Unknown

0.6 0.4 0.2 0.0 2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

2009-10

2010-11

2011-12

2012-13

2013-14

2014-15

Figure 60

2004–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY The rates of activity types being undertaken when coastal drowning deaths occur vary over time in Tas. Activities that have a rate greater than the 11-year average are swimming and wading (0.19 vs. 0.15 average rate per 100,000 pop.) and rock/cliff related activities other than rock fishing (0.19 vs.

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

0.04 average rate per 100,000 pop.). There were no incidents related to boating, rock fishing, diving, watercraft, snorkelling or attempting a rescue activities in 2014–15.

42

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


Figure 61

CASE STUDY: PADDLE SAFE

2004–15: TASMANIAN COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

2

HOBART 2 2

2 2

3 2 3 3

The use of paddlecraft, such as kayaks, canoes and ocean skis, is popular in Tasmania. Retailers have seen sales increase—in 2014–15, more than 4,000 paddlecraft were sold. The SLSA National Coastal Safety Survey 2015 reported that at least 55,000 Tasmanians use a paddlecraft in coastal waters. The proliferation of paddlecraft in Tasmania combined with increased numbers of lightweight-craft-related rescues during 2014–15 has been identified as an area requiring attention. Surf Life Saving Tasmania (SLST), in partnership with Marine and Safety Tasmania (MaST), have produced a three-year strategy focusing on lightweight craft. A cornerstone of the strategy is the Paddle Safe program, which has a multi-faceted approach to strengthen community resilience. The program is a consolidated intervention, education and practical skills program aimed at encouraging and increasing safe participation and recreation. It promotes paddle safety messages (including lifejacket usage) via traditional media as well as social media channels. It includes a holistic safety program for paddlecraft users, supervisors and teachers, including skills development sessions for the general public and school groups. Additionally, retailers, school staff, outdoor educators and tourism staff were engaged and provided professional development to improve their understanding of aquatic safety. The program began in 2014–15 and will continue into the following years.

Attempting a Rescue Boating Diving Rock Fishing Rock/Cliff Related Snorkelling Swimming/Wading Watercraft Other Unknown Multiple instances per activity at the same location

OTHER TASMANIAN COASTAL SAFETY ISSUES

Issue

Intervention

Rip currents

Community education programs

Boating

Boatwise app (collaboration with MaST) Promoting awareness about inflatable lifejacket usage (collaboration with MaST)

Cold water immersion

Public awareness campaigns and on-water education (collaboration with MaST)

SECTION T WO

43

DROWNING ANALYSIS


ROCK FISHING SNAPSHOT 2 0 0 4 –15

ANALYSIS On average, at least 13 people drown per year as a result of rock fishing. It’s the third highest number of deaths for an individual activity.

0

RANK

3rd AVERAGE DEATHS PER YEAR

13

4

30 1

85

AVERAGE FATALITY RATE

0.06

11

PER 100,000 POPULATION

LOCATION

6

KEY DEMOGRAPHIC

FATALITIES

137

MEN AGED

25–64

TAS

4%

VIC

8% QLD

3%

fatalities 2004–15

YEARS

SA

1%

94%

Australian residents, Australian-born and overseas-born WA

WERE MEN

22% NSW

62%

CONTRIBUTING FACTORS

AVERAGE AGE

45

No lifejacket usage Dangerous conditions

YEARS

Fishing alone

Percentage of Population (%)

16

PARTICIPATION

2014–15: NATIONAL PARTICIPATION IN COASTAL ROCK FISHING

14

• 1.3 million rock fishers

14%

12 10 8

11%

10%

9%

8%

11% 9%

6 5%

4

5%

5%

QLD

VIC

• Occasional rock fishers average 9 hours per year

2 0

TOTAL

Male

Female

NSW/ACT

• 0.6 million frequent rock fishers (at least once a month)

WA

SA

TAS

NT

• Frequent rock fishers average 309 hours per year

Reference: SLSA National Coastal Safety Survey 2015

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


NORTHERN TERRITORY

3.0

7

Figure 63 2.0

4

4

4

1.5

3 1.0 2

3 2 2 2

1

DARWIN

2014-15

2013-14

2012-13

2

2011-12

2010-11

2008-09

1 2007-08

2004-05

2005-06

1

2009-10

1 0

2 0.5

2006-07

Number (n)

5

2

2004–15: NORTHERN TERRITORY COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

2.5

6

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

6

0

2

Attempting a Rescue Boating Diving Rock Fishing Rock/Cliff Related Snorkelling Swimming/Wading Watercraft Other Unknown Multiple instances per activity at the same location

Figure 62

2004–15: 11-YEAR TREND OF NORTHERN TERRITORY COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS In 2014–15, there were no coastal drowning deaths in the Northern Territory (NT). From 2004 to 2015, there has been an average number of 2 coastal drowning deaths per year, which is an average rate of 0.84 per 100,000 pop.

NORTHERN TERRITORY COASTAL SAFETY ISSUES Issue

Intervention

Boating

Promoting safe boating practices Providing emergency response

Dangerous marine creatures

Wet season patrols

1.6

Rate (per 100,000 pop.)

1.4 1.2 1.0

Boating Swimming/Wading Attempting a Rescue Other Rock/Cliff Related Diving Rock Fishing Snorkelling Watercraft Unknown

0.8 0.6 0.4 0.2 0.0 2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

2009-10

2010-11

2011-12

2012-13

Figure 64

2004–15: COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS BY ACTIVITY The rates of activity types being undertaken when coastal drowning deaths occur vary over time in NT. There were no coastal drowning deaths to report in 2014–15.

SECTION T WO

45

DROWNING ANALYSIS

2013-14

2014-15


DROWNING CHAIN

Breaking the Drowning Chain Understanding why people drown is vital to developing drowning prevention strategies. Four key factors have been identified that may lead to accidental drowning, known as the ‘Drowning Chain’. Any of these factors alone, or in combination, could lead to death by drowning (George, 2011). Mitigation Strategy: Educate and Inform

TO P

RO M EN OT VI E RO N

N IO IS E RV NC PE LA IL

S SE ILL E A SK L

TO

ES IC

PR O OF MOT SU E RV TH IV

SU IN RV CR IV A

RI SK

T

AS S

T EN

ITY AL ES QU IC E ERV S

SM ES

LA C OR K O S FS U RV U E

AS S

AS S

IN ON AB C ILI E I N TY D

Mitigation Strategy: Survival Skills

RI SK

PE Y CO ULT TO FIC IF

L IF

E S AV EXT IN G

TO LIF PR ES OM AV O IN T G

N TIO ISI QU LS AC KIL E S AL

REDUCE DROWNING

EN SM ES

TO INC RE PUBL ASE IC E KN DU OW CA L TI ED O N

TY UALI HQ UG NESS RO ARE H W T A E G ND A

T EN

ED U IN CA FO

SM ES

D AN E M T R

AS PR S AN OVI D DE DE W NY

S NG NI ESS AR CC A

IS K

SK

EN SM ES

TED RIC ST RD RE AZA UN E H H

UN INF AC ORM CE E SS D O TO R T RI

• Provide warnings • Coastal risk assessments • Improve infrastructure

TI C UA AQ FE NTS SA M E

L AC OR M K OF ISU KN ND O W ER ST LED AN G D R

OR D F ARD R A Z EG H A SR THE I D F E, G O IN T

D RV EN SE

• Increase community awareness of hazards • Provide education and training • Undertake advocacy

Mitigation Strategy: Warnings and Access

Mitigation Strategy: Lifesaving Services

• Develop people’s aquatic skills • Improve community resilience to the hazard

• Provide lifesaving services • Emergency response

Figure 65

THE DROWNING CHAIN AND DROWNING PREVENTION STRATEGIES The key factors that lead to drowning deaths are lack of knowledge, disregard for or misunderstanding of the hazard; uninformed or unrestricted access to the hazard; lack of supervision or surveillance; and inability to cope once in

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

difficulty. Each of these factors can be mitigated using drowning prevention strategies. Examples of types of strategies to address the factors are show adjacent to the factors in this visualisation of the Drowning Chain.

46

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


W AT E R C R A F T S N A P S H O T 2 0 0 4 –15

ANALYSIS On average, at least eight people drown per year as a result of using non-powered watercraft. It’s the fourth highest number of drowning deaths for an individual activity. RANK

AVERAGE DEATHS PER YEAR

8

0

4th 0.03

18

13 4

AVERAGE FATALITY RATE

32

PER 100,000 POPULATION

12 3

TYPE OF CRAFT

KEY DEMOGRAPHIC

FATALITIES

MEN AGED

25–49

5%

4% 5%

YEARS

Australian residents, surfers and body boarders Surfboard Body board Kayak/Canoe Kite surfing/Wind surfing Wave ski/Surf ski Other

16%

fatalities 2004–15

MEN AGED

25–49

YEARS

Australian residents, paddlecraft users

54%

CONTRIBUTING FACTORS Unpatrolled locations No lifejacket use (paddlers and other watercraft) Rip currents Surfing/paddling alone

17%

Percentage of Population (%)

25

Surfing/Body Boarding Other Watercraft

21% 21%

16%

15 14% 10

10%

12%

11% 9% 7%

5

12% 8% 8%

6%

6%

7%

7% 5% 5% 3%

0

Total

Male

Female

Reference: SLSA National Coastal Safety Survey 2015

NSW/ACT

QLD

VIC

WA

SA

WERE  MEN

AVERAGE AGE

41 YEARS

PARTICIPATION

2014–15: NATIONAL PARTICIPATION IN COASTAL WATERCRAFT USE

20

82 92%

4%

TAS

NT

• 1.7 million surfers • 1 million frequent surfers (at least once a month) • Occasional surfers average 8 hours per year • Frequent surfers average 279 hours per year • 1.4 million total watercraft users • 0.9 million frequent watercraft users (at least once a month) • Occasional watercraft users average 8 hours per year • Frequent watercraft users average 379 hours per year


GLOSSARY

Diving - Engaging in recreational or commercial scuba diving. Drowning - The process of experiencing respiratory impairment from submersion/immersion in liquid. Drowning death - A fatality arising from the process of respiratory impairment as a result of submersion/immersion in liquid. Emergency response - An action taken by an SLS entity in response to a call for assistance from an emergency management organisation. First Aid - Immediate or emergency assistance given on the spot to people suffering from illness or injury. Fishing - The act of catching fish. Foreign ethnicity - Individuals who identify with a cultural group other than Australian based on heritage, language or shared customs. This identification is extrapolated from reported data such as the individualsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; country of birth and the main language spoken at home. Hazard - The potential origin of danger, injury or difficulty. HRS - Helicopter rescue service. ILS - International Life Saving Federation. Inland - An area that is beyond the line of mean high water or beyond a landward distance of five times the width of the coastal inlet/river mouth. Inland Drowning Death - A fatality arising from the impairment of respiratory function as a result of immersion in liquid, where the location of the drowning is not considered coastal but occurs in an inland body of water such as a river, lake, creek or dam. International - An individual who is confirmed to reside overseas and/or is a temporary visitor to Australia. IRB - Inflatable rescue boat. JRB - Jet rescue boat. Lake - An inland body of water surrounded by land. Leisure Activity - An activity commenced on land such as play, walking, jogging or cycling. Lifeguard - Typically a paid employee at a beach or another aquatic environment whose role is to rescue people in danger of drowning or prevent them getting into that situation. Lifejacket - A buoyant or inflatable garment or device designed to keep a person afloat in water and increase their likelihood of survival.

Advanced Resuscitation Techniques - A certification providing the skills and knowledge required to use specialised equipment in the provision of resuscitation in line with the Australian Resuscitation Council (ARC) guidelines. ALS - Australian Lifeguard Service. Apply First Aid - A certification providing the skills and knowledge required to provide a first aid response to a casualty. Attempting a rescue - An individual who makes an effort to remove someone from a dangerous situation. AWSC - Australian Water Safety Councilâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;also Australian Water Safety Conference. AWSS - Australian Water Safety Strategy. Bay - A body of water partially enclosed by land but with a wide mouth, affording access to the sea. Beach - An expanse of sand or pebbles along a shoreline. Blackspot - An area with a high concentration of coastal/ocean incidents and a high probability/risk of ongoing reoccurrence. Boating - Individuals using either a powered vessel or sailing boat for pleasure and/or fishing. Coastal - The foreshore, seabed, coastal water and air space above a large body of water (harbour/bay/inlet), including areas up to 2NM offshore and of which the landward boundary is the line of mean high water, except that where that line crosses a river/inlet, the landward boundary at that point shall be the point upstream that is calculated by multiplying the width of the river/inlet mouth by 5. (Adopted from the Resource Management Amendment Act 1993-New Zealand). Coastal death - A fatality arising from various circumstances occurring (e.g. heart attack, boat collision, fall, shark attack) where the location of the death is coastal. Coastal drowning death - Where the location of the drowning is on the coast, in the ocean up to 2NM offshore or inland up to five times the width of the inlet/river. COD - Cause of death Crude drowning rate - The crude drowning rate is a comparative rate of drowning to the size of the population in that area. Dangerous surf warning - An alert issued by the Bureau of Meteorology indicating that surf conditions in an area are unsafe for coastal activities. The warnings are calculated based on wave height, swell direction and swell period.

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

48

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


RWC - Rescue water craft - sometimes called a personal water craft. Service season and hours - Vary between states due to climatic factors, but in the context of this report, the season is for the period July 2014 to June 2015. Snorkelling - Swimming with a snorkel and face mask. Support operations - Rapid response rescue units, not affiliated to any specific surf life saving club. Surf Life Saving Club - A not-for-profit organisation that provides coastal safety services. Surf lifesaver - Typically a volunteer at a beach or another aquatic environment whose role is to rescue people in danger of drowning or prevent them getting into that situation. Surfcom - SLS radio communications centre which assists in managing the communications of lifesaving operations and data collection. Swimming - Being active while immersed in water. Total Service Plan - An assessment of current and future lifesaving resources, trends, national blackspots and coastal safety issues combined with evidenced-based mitigation strategies to address these issues. Undetermined - Cases that are not associated with a closed coroner’s report on NCIS are often left ‘undetermined’ until an official cause of death has been determined. Some examples are cases where bodies have been found washed up on the beach, reports of individuals struggling in coastal environments are made and the bodies are not found/missing persons reports are not made, or a suspected heart attack in a coastal environment rather than death due to immersion. These deaths will all be followed up on and the incident category updated once coroner determinations are made accessible. Wading - A person who is partially immersed in water while standing. Watercraft - A piece of non-powered recreational equipment used in the water. Examples include surfboards, boogie boards, windsurfers or kayaks.

Lifesaving service - A service that exists to provide aquatic safety services to the public. Local Government Area (LGA) - Also known as local councils, LGAs include cities, towns, shires, municipalities or boroughs. Marina/jetty - A boat basin offering dockage and other service for small craft, or a pier/wharf. NCIS - National Coronial Information System. Ocean drowning death - Where the location of the drowning is in the ocean further than 2NM offshore, but no further than 12NM. Open ocean - The seabed, water and air space above the water between 2NM and 12NM (the Australian territorial waters limit) offshore. ORB - Offshore rescue boat. Other - An uncommon known activity not otherwise listed (e.g. paragliding, aircraft crash, fall from pier). Patrol - Surf lifesavers or lifeguards actively supervising a coastal location. Patrolled location - A location supervised constantly or periodically by a lifesaving service. Prevention - Where intervention by a lifesaving resource averts a person/s from getting into a potentially life-threatening situation. Rescue - Where intervention by a lifesaving resource removes a person/s from a life-threatening or potentially life-threatening situation. Resuscitation - Preservation or restoration of life by establishing and maintaining a person’s airway, breathing and circulation. RIB - Rigid-hull inflatable boat. Rip current - A narrow seaward flowing current of water moving through a surf zone (Short, 2003). River - A natural stream of water flowing into an ocean or bay. Rock/cliff - A rocky shoreline that may or may not have a high steep face. Rock/cliff related - An activity besides fishing that is performed on a rocky shoreline or off a groyne. Rock-fishing death - A fatality arising from various circumstances occurring (e.g. wave motion, loss of footing) where the victim was participating in fishing activities on a rocky coast immediately prior to or during the incident.

49

GLOSSARY GLOSSARY


REFERENCE

DROWNING DATA ANALYSIS SLSA collects incident data from SurfGuard, the IRD, SurfCom, the National Coronial Information System (NCIS) and by monitoring media reports for drowning incidents. The information is verified with the assistance of each state/ territory SLS entity and complied for analysis by SLSA’s Coastal Safety Department. The following variables are used to match drowning cases from more than one data source: incident date; location; age; gender; and incident description. The NCIS is considered the ‘gold standard’ when there is a discrepancy in the detail collected from different data sources. Deaths are excluded if they are reported as ‘intentional deaths’, they are inland/ocean locations drowning, or drowning/immersion is not a primary cause of death.

METHODOLOGY The 2015 National Coastal Safety Report contains information on Australian community behaviours and attitudes to the coast; SLS capability and membership capacity; rescues and emergency response; and coastal drowning deaths for the period of 1 July 2014 to 30 June 2015. This information is correct as of 9 October 2015. All care is taken to ensure the statistical information included within this report is correct. However, pending the outcome of ongoing coronial investigations and as SLS state/territory entities update their operational information, this data may be amended. Data illustrated in figures may not always add up to 100% due to rounding. THE AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITY ANALYSIS Information about community swimming ability, behaviours and attitudes to coastal safety was gathered from the National Coastal Safety Survey. Conducted by Newspoll Market Research, the survey was run online over the period 9–12 April 2015 among a national sample of 1,463 respondents aged 16 to 69. The study was carried out in compliance with ISO 20252 - Market, Social and Opinion Research. To reflect the population distribution, results were post-weighted (on age, gender, geographic strata and education) and projected to Australian Bureau of Statistics data. The Australian population aged 16 to 69 (the reference population for this survey) is 16,444,000.

DROWNING DATA LIMITATIONS Over years of investigation as part of the NCIS process, some cases are amended prior to their closure, resulting in changes to the classification of cases in our datasets. Therefore, the number of coastal drowning deaths published in this report may be different from annual totals previously reported. In an effort to produce a timely report on our current year’s data we acknowledge that these figures will change. Each year, the changes that occur in the previous year’s report will be made transparent. The data in this current report are not the final figures as 63% of 2014–15 coastal drowning deaths reported remain open cases and 13% of cases do not have a cause of death (COD) listed yet. Once a closure occurs to NCIS cases we can modify undetermined cases, those with unknown intent, and those where the cause of death is not drowning. All deaths known to have occurred in coastal waters have been included as coastal drowning deaths, unless the COD is listed as otherwise. Bars of two different colours are used to illustrate the incidents where a COD has not been listed on NCIS in Figure 24. The incidents are included in our annual totals and analysis, and they will remain so until a COD is listed other than drowning/immersion.

CAPABILITY AND RESCUE ANALYSIS Data Sources SurfGuard, the Incident Report database (IRD) and SurfCom management system (SurfCom) are web-based applications and are part of a suite of applications that enables members, clubs, branches, state offices and SLSA to enter and access SLS operational (including rescues and first aids), capability (including assets and services), educational and administrative data. Information was extracted from SurfGuard to identify how many rescues were performed by volunteers, lifeguards and support services during 2014–15; and how many active lifesavers and new award holders there were during 2014–15. The data was verified by SLS state/territory entities. Information about assets, services and the number of responses to requests from emergency services was gathered from each SLS state/ territory entity.

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

CHANGES FROM PREVIOUS REPORTS Over years of investigation as part of the NCIS process, some cases are amended prior to their closure and have resulted in changes to our data sets. The new numbers of coastal drowning deaths are different from the annual totals that have been previously reported as cases have closed.

50

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015


• Short, AD (2003). Australia Beach Systems—The morphodynamics of wave through tide-dominated beachdune systems. Journal of Coastal Research SI 35, 7–20. • Surf Life Saving Australia National Coastal Safety Survey (2015). Newspoll Online Omnibus April 2015.

Table 1

CHANGES IN THE NUMBER OF COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS PER YEAR AS PREVIOUSLY REPORTED 2011 NCSR

2012 NCSR

2013 NCSR

2014 NCSR

2015 NCSR

2004–05

92

89

89

89

89

2005–06

103

95

95

95

95

2006–07

103

98

98

98

98

2007–08

92

89

89

89

89

2008–09

91

89

89

89

89

2009–10

84

83

85

85

85

2010–11

61

70

72

69

69

119

115

113

113

121

118

118

84

83

2011–12 2012–13 2013–14 2014–15

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Surf Life Saving Australia wishes to thank the following people and organisations for their contribution to the National Coastal Safety Report 2015: • The Australian Government, principally the Department of Health • SLSA major national corporate partners, including DHL, Telstra and Westpac • Surf Life Saving state centres, branches, clubs and support operations • The SLSA Research Advisory Committee • Royal Life Saving Society Australia, Amy Peden • The Australian Lifeguard Service • National Coronial Information System, Leanne Daking

102

SUGGESTED CITATION Surf Life Saving Australia (2015) National Coastal Safety Report 2015. SLSA: Sydney. REFERENCES • Australian Water Safety Council (2012). Australian Water Safety Strategy 2012–15. Australian Water Safety Council: Sydney. • Bugeja L, Cassell E, Brodie LR, Walter SJ (2014). Effectiveness of the 2005 Compulsory Personal Flotation Device (PFD) Wearing Regulations in Reducing Drowning Deaths among Recreational Boaters in Victoria, Australia. Injury Prevention. Published Online First: 26 June 2014 doi:10.1136/ injuryprev-2014-041169. • George, P (2011). Drowning Prevention Strategies 2011. World Conference on Drowning Prevention. International Life Saving Federation, Danang, Vietnam. • International Lifejacket Wear Principles (2015). Retrieved from http://www.lifejacketwear.com/en/ on 30/10/2015 • New Zealand, Ministry for the Environment (1991). Resource Management Act 1991. Retrieved from http://www.legislation. govt.nz/act/public/1991/0069/latest/DLM230265. html?search=ts_act_Resource+Management+Act_ resel&p=1&sr=1 on 30/10/2015

REFERENCE

CONTACT INFORMATION Surf Life Saving receives Government funding to commence valuable initiatives and programs. However, we rely on the generosity of the community and corporate support to ensure they continue. To help Surf Life Saving please donate to: Surf Life Saving Foundation­—slsfoundation.com.au For more information: Surf Life Saving Australia—sls.com.au Surf Life Saving New South Wales—surflifesaving.com.au Surf Life Saving Northern Territory—lifesavingnt.com.au Surf Life Saving Queensland—lifesaving.com.au Surf Life Saving South Australia—surflifesavingsa.com.au Surf Life Saving Tasmania—slst.asn.au Life Saving Victoria—lifesavingvictoria.com.au Surf Life Saving Western Australia—surflifesavingwa.com.au

51

METHODOLOGY


P ADGREOH WENAIDNIGN G P A G ES N SU AB P SHHEOATD I N G

COASTAL DROWNING DEATHS

MALE

FEMALE Location

Contributing Factors

16% 27% 9% AT THE BEACH

AT LEAST 5KM FROM A LIFESAVING SERVICE

RIP CURRENTS

MEDICAL CONDITION OR INJURY

ALCOHOL/ DRUGS

Activity

33% SWIMMING

13% ROCK FISHING

19% BOATING

9%

WATERCRAFT

SURF LIFE SAVING AUSTR ALIA

0 14

19

12 18

NATIONAL COASTAL SAFET Y REPORT 2015

37 2


National Coastal Safety Report 2015