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,” he said.
“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.”
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.