As crowds in the water increase at all well-known surfing breaks, Noosa World Surfing Reserve aims to create a welcoming surf culture in Noosa in which both visitors and locals share the waves and respect the rights of others to enjoy them.
There are growing concerns around safety in the NWSR for surfers and swimmers with several incidents reported every busy summer period. These can be attributed to Noosa’s high visitation figures and increasing numbers of people wanting to enjoy the sport of surfing coupled with a lack of understanding of basic safety and etiquette.
You may have noticed the temporary Corflute Surf Code signs at several locations between the river mouth and the walking track to Tea Tree Bay with colourful cartoon illustrations depicting examples of correct and respectful behaviour in the surf. NWSR has been working over the past couple of years to have permanent surf safety signage installed in their place.
The first stage of this process has been to refine the message and design a sign that is both instructive and fits into the unique Noosa character. Noosa Council approved our submission for a Community and Environment grant that enabled NWSR to work with local signage and graphic studio, Sunrise Creative to develop an appropriate design.
Concurrently, consultation with representatives from all disciplines, including short boards, longboards, SUPs, foils, skis, body surfers and ocean swimmers, has enable the surfing community to work together on messaging that will mitigate/manage threats/risks by changing behaviours through self -regulation. The signage is an integral part of this program. The QR code on these signs, which portray the Overarching Code, will link viewers to the tailored Surf Codes of each individual discipline that will be included on the NWSR website.
Ideally, we are aiming to have the permanent signs produced and installed before the start of the next busy Summer season. Again, Noosa Council has been supportive in helping NWSR to procure funding for this next stage of the project. Watch this space.