Canal Rocks Boat Ramp to Remain Open

Update March 21, 2019

Recfishwest are pleased to report that Environment Minister Stephen Dawson has announced that the Canal Rocks boat ramp will remain open for all users!

A fantastic outcome for fishers in the South West

This is a fantastic win for the South West fishing and boating community who worked hard to ensure that an independent risk assessment was undertaken following concerns of the ramps closure in 2017. The report from this assessment recommended the Canal Rocks boat ramp remain open for public use, with ongoing works to improve its safety.

This comes as great news on the eve of some of the best fishing and boating weather in the South West. Fishers spend $2.4 billion on fishing annually, and decisions such as this support access to high quality fishing experiences.

Recfishwest were proud to work alongside the community in their endeavour to ensure this important piece of infrastructure remained open for all.

We look forward to seeing some great catches taken out from Canal Rocks this Autumn.

Read the Ministers announcement here.

Update 31 August 2018:

Recfishwest attended a risk assessment workshop in Busselton today along with members of local fishing clubs and sea rescue groups to provide advice on Canal Rocks boat ramp.

The community advocating against the proposed boat ramp closure

December 14, 2017

Avid followers of our communications would have seen the article published in the November edition of Recfishwest Broadcast outlining the Environment Minister’s plans to close the Canal Rocks boat ramp, located near Yallingup in the states South West.

Although no decision has been made, Recfishwest can report that the following actions have taken place since our last update:

  •  Recfishwest wrote to the Minister in October. We received a response to this letter on December 13.
  •  The Minister has met with representatives from the City of Busselton and has agreed to await a review of the original engineering report that is being conducted by the City.
  •  Recfishwest has lodged a request to obtain the advice the Minister received from Risk Cover which was cited as the reason for closing the ramp.
  • In early December we sent the Minister another letter accompanied with a petition filled out by over 4,000 people.
  • Local member of parliament Libby Mettam presented a grievance in the upper house of parliament.
  • Recfishwest has presented the Minister for Environment and the City of Busselton with an alternative Australian Standard which we believe is more appropriate for open ocean boat ramps.
  • There have been two editorials in the West Australian about this ramp and several letters to the editor proving this is an important issue and with the West Coast Demersal closure finishing on Saturday, December 16 the Minister likely to see what an important asset this ramp is for the community.

Recfishwest will continue to advocate that the boat ramp remains open and will keep our readers informed of any new developments, watch this space.

The South West fishing and boating community worked hard to get their voices heard
Recfishwest were proud to work alongside the community in their endeavour to ensure this important piece of infrastructure remained open for all users

 

Sign the Petition to Save Canal Rocks Boat Ramp

Click HERE to sign the petition to save Canal Rocks Boat Ramp!

The recreational fishing community has been angered over the past few weeks as plans to close an important boat ramp in the South-West region became apparent. 

Canal Rocks Boat Ramp, near Yallingup, has provided fishers access to important local fishing spots for decades. Recently, however, the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) is considering closing the ramp, citing safety concerns.

This has been met with anger and frustration from both local and visiting fishers who are set to lose access to one of the South-West’s most loved aquatic playgrounds.

Recfishwest Operations Manager Leyland Campbell who spoke at the rally to hundreds of concerned locals , said the peak body is disappointed not to have been consulted and that all options to keep the ramp open are not being considered.

”We will advocate for the ramp to remain open as it is actually one of the safest ramps in the region and DBCA claims about safety simply don’t add up.”

“The Department of Biodiversity, Conservations and Attractions claim this ramp doesn’t meet Australian Standards (exposure to waves greater than 20cm) however, the standards they are choosing to apply are for boat ramps within marinas, not oceanic ramps. If the government applied this standard to all oceanic boat ramps in Western Australia then over 90% of these ramps would be closed. This is simply not acceptable and cannot go unchallenged.”

“While Recfishwest has a strong track record in advocating for fishing safety, we recognise people must take personal responsibility. It is not the Government’s role to protect the community from every conceivable risk, but it is the Governement’s role to provide the basic community infrastructure required to support our culture and lifestyle.” Mr Campbell said.

“The fishing public of Western Australia accept the risks associated with operating a vessel anywhere in our state, including using discretion to assess any ramp for a safe launch and retrieve.”

Recfishwest believe access to high-quality experiences, including fishing, are paramount to the West Australian lifestyle and must be maintained.

Local fisher Glenn Wakelam can’t believe the ramp is being considered for closure.

“This is such a popular ramp during the summer months. On a nice day, it is not unusual to find over 20 trailers in the carpark.”

“Canal Rocks Boat Ramp has been used by the public for decades and the wave height has not changed over that time.”

“People aren’t stupid if the swell is too big, they don’t use the ramp.” Mr Wakelan said

Recfishwest has written to the Environment Minister urging him to reconsider this decision but we need your help to ensure the message is heard loud and clear.

What can you do to help?

1. Sign the petition, HERE.
2. Contact your local MP, and tell them how important it is that we have recreational boating facilities around our great state. Whilst you may not launch at Canal Rocks, your local ramp could be next on the list.
3. Tell everyone you know. The more we can let decision makers know how important access to great fishing experiences is to us, the better our chances of a decision in our favour.