SAFETY MESSAGE: Minister for Natural Resources Dr Anthony Lynham urges families to stay safe around water these holidays.
SAFETY MESSAGE: Minister for Natural Resources Dr Anthony Lynham urges families to stay safe around water these holidays. Erica Murree

Safety first for dams and lakes

FISHING at Paradise Dam, water skiing at Lake Cania and camping at Boondooma Dam - as the school holidays arrive, warm days outside with the family spring to mind for many Burnett locals.

But while they might have unwinding on their mind, they are being reminded to stay aware of the hazards that days by the water can bring.

"Stay vigilant and stay safe” is the message for the thousands expected to take advantage of Queensland's dams and lakes during the September school holidays.

"Our dams, lakes and weirs are a hive of activity for family recreational pursuits, such as swimming, fishing, water skiing and camping,'' Minister for Natural Resources Dr Anthony Lynham said.

"There's nothing better than dropping a line for barramundi at Peter Faust Dam, enjoying the raft of water sports on offer at Tinaroo Falls Dam or having a barbie with friends at Wuruma Dam but visitors need to be aware that dams, weirs and channels might look calm but can be dangerous and unpredictable.

"Risky behaviour, underwater hazards, changing water levels and ignorance of warning signs can combine to create serious risks.”

Mr Lynham said at all times he asked people to watch their mates to be aware of their surroundings when entering the water, including submerged hazards, and to refrain from trespassing on private property adjoining the water way.

"This safety message is especially pertinent with the September school break almost upon us,'' he said.

Visitors should:

  • Keep at least 200 metres away from dam and weir walls or outside the buoy line upstream of the wall;
  • Read the signs - they contain important information about water, recreational activities, potential hazards, blue-green algae levels and no-go zones and
  • Stay aware of the surroundings - fast flowing water can be released suddenly from a dam, or weir and can knock you off your feet and pin you underwater.

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