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Government of Western Australia - Department of Fisheries

The new alarms use lights, sirens and audio broadcasts to alert beachgoers to closures.

Monday 18 February 2019

New technology tracks shark movements

​New alarms and seabed receivers will be deployed to track shark activity and alert beachgoers complementing the SMART drumline trial in the Gracetown area.

Nine Western Australian-built shark alarms will be installed adjacent to main surf breaks in the trial area, to alert beachgoers when the beach is being closed due to a shark in the area. The alarms use lights, sirens and audio broadcasts to inform beachgoers about beach closures.

The new alarms will be installed this week at surf breaks - Gallows, Guillotines, Cobblestones, The Womb, Ellensbrook, South Point and North Point - and two alarms will be installed at Lefthanders.

In addition, 240 seabed monitors are now being deployed off the South-West coast that will gather detailed scientific data on tagged shark movements.

The seabed monitors, known as VR2 receivers, collect fine-scale movement data from tagged sharks, and are being placed around the trial zone and along surf breaks from Cape Naturaliste to Margaret River.

The layout of these seabed monitors has been designed to gather data to determine if sharks relocated during the trial come back close to the beach or remain offshore.

The data from these receivers will be retrieved every four months by our officers to build a more comprehensive picture of white shark movements off the South-West coast.

This information will be used by Chief Scientist Peter Klinken for his independent scientific assessment of the effectiveness of the SMART drumline technology in reducing the risk of a shark attack.

For more information, visit Sharksmart.

Last modified: 19/02/2019 9:32 AM

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