Wi-Fi alerts to keep Queensland beachgoers safe this summer
A Wi-Fi system that will allow surf life savers to send alerts to mobile phones to keep beachgoers safe will be rolled out across all Queensland beaches in time for summer.
In the past 10 years there have been 75 drownings recorded on Queensland beaches and, of these, 31 victims (41%) were international tourists or recent migrants. Meanwhile, of the 5,000+ rescues performed by Queensland’s surf lifesavers and lifeguards since January 2017, almost 80% have occurred outside of the red and yellow flags.
In response, Surf Life Saving Queensland (SLSQ) has worked with Actify Live and Romeo to develop mobile Wi-Fi technology between the red and yellow flags, capable of pushing out real-time surf safety alerts in seven different languages. The new technology, called Life-Fi, will allow beachgoers to access unlimited free Wi-Fi between the flags along with a live feed of multilingual information on conditions, closures, and other safety tips.
Initially Life-Fi will communicate safety information in English, Arabic, Hindi, Simplified and Traditional Chinese, Japanese, and Thai, with opportunities to expand on the number of languages moving forward.
Assistant Tourism Industry Development Minister Meaghan Scanlon said Life-Fi, a portable self-contained wireless network, was a game changing product that equipped lifesavers with the tools they needed to communicate directly with beachgoers.
“This is a great win for the Gold Coast,” she said.
“By funding this initiative through our $34 million Connecting with Asia strategy we’re bringing this tool to life just in time for the tourism industry’s busiest season.”
Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones said Life-Fi would make Queensland beaches appeal to more tourists.
“The research shows that two of Queensland tourism’s biggest selling points are its beaches and its reputation as a safe place to visit,” she said.
“There is no doubt this system will save lives.
“If we can make people feel safe, we know we’ll lure more people to the beach – this is a great outcome for our tourism industry.”
Ms Jones said Life-Fi had already been trialled at Mooloolaba Surf Life Saving Club, with great effect.
“We want to give Queensland lifesavers the cutting-edge technology they need to make our beaches the safest in the world,” she said.
“That’s why 10 surf lifesaving clubs will receive Life-Fi later this year, with a further four mobile devices moving along the coast as needed.”
SLSQ Chief Executive John Brennan OAM thanked the Queensland Government for its vital support, saying Life-Fi would play a key role in protecting both international and domestic beachgoers this summer.
“For us, the benefits of Life-Fi are two-fold; it’s a great way to encourage all swimmers to stay between the flags, but it’s also a wonderful platform to provide live information on conditions and safety tips, particularly to international tourists in their own language,” he said.
“It’s not uncommon to see international beachgoers who don’t speak English and who don’t have a lot of experience in the surf, and it can be a really challenging situation for our lifesavers and lifeguards.
“Even trying to communicate simple messages such as ‘swim between the flags’ or ‘watch out for that rip’ can be almost impossible at times when you don’t speak the same language.
“We can use Life-Fi to educate and engage with all beachgoers, be it international or domestic, and that could literally mean the difference between a drowning and a positive outcome in the right circumstances.”
29th September 2013 - Surf Life Saving Australia smart phone app translates into saving lives
7th January 2016 - Surf Life Saving Australia asks beachgoers to play a role in safety
29th December 2014 - Surf Life Saving Australia launches biggest ever national fundraising campaign
14th December 2017 - Surf Life Saving Australia reveals 116 coastal drowning deaths in 2016/17
Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?
The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.
However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.
Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.
Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.
Click here to subscribe.
The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.
SeatGeek is a search engine and mobile-focused ticket marketplace that allows fans to buy and sell tickets for live events. As of August 2018, SeatGeek has exited the Australian, New…read more
Turnstile Entry Systems and Access Control Centaman Entrance Controls’ Award Winning Range of Access Control Systems includes tripod & triarm turnstiles, speedgates, full height…read more
Tim Batt Water Solutions are at the very forefront of the commercial aquatic business in Australia, with over 30 years specific experience supplying and installing chemical control and dosing…read more
Rhinoplay offers playground equipment in Australia that is safe, durable, and most importantly fun! We specialise in creating unique indoor playgrounds for play centres and outdoor playgrounds for…read more
Talk To Us For Independent Advice & Specialised Services We're business people, not sales reps IP HUB is one of Australia’s leading advisors on telecoms for both small businesses and…read more
We are Aussie Strength. The ultimate supplier for Commercial Gym Equipment that's built to deliver in the toughest environments. From USA-Built hardcore weight training equipment from Arsenal…read more
get listed with our suppliers directory
Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!