Somerset Regional Council Mayor, Graeme Lehmann with Surf Lifesavers (from left) Morgan Forbes, Jacob Compton, Mitch Pearce, Arthur Hanley, Brigitte Seymour, Carly Flood and Samantha Fien.
Somerset Regional Council Mayor, Graeme Lehmann with Surf Lifesavers (from left) Morgan Forbes, Jacob Compton, Mitch Pearce, Arthur Hanley, Brigitte Seymour, Carly Flood and Samantha Fien. Contributed

City kids get taste of dam dangers

NEARLY 500 Brisbane students were told to be "dam smart" these summer holidays at Lake Wivenhoe.

The Somerset Regional Council hosted a "Be DAM smart, not DAM stupid" session in conjunction with the Water Grid, Queensland Police Service and Maritime Safety Queensland.

Somerset Mayor Graeme Lehmann said water safety in the region was important during the tourist season.

"We want to educate people about safe behaviour on the region's dams this summer," he said. "The Somerset region is home to Lake Wivenhoe and Lake Somerset and we welcome our many visitors from Brisbane to enjoy these natural assets this summer.

"Record numbers of people are expected to visit these areas over the holiday period, so it is important to be safe on the water."

Lowood SES and members of Surf Lifesaving Queensland were in attendance, with the lifesavers demonstrating a rescue from the surf rescue helicopter.

Cr Lehmann said the presence of lifesavers was a one-off for the lake.

"Unlike beaches, dams are not patrolled and do not have lifeguards on duty to assist should dangerous situations arise," he said.

"The responsibility is on each individual to take control of their own, and their children's, safety."

To enforce safe and responsible behaviour, SEQwater rangers, Queensland Maritime Safety officers and Queensland Police will be conducting patrols around major dams over summer.

These patrols will involve random breath-testing of boat operators and drivers, as well as monitoring dangerous or anti-social behaviour.



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