The Fisheries Minister says he is confident a new Fisheries boat, with an inflatable hull, will be safe, despite operating in waters frequented by great white sharks.
Norman Moore officially launched the vessel in Busselton on Friday – the boat will be used to carry out compliance checks at the newly created Ngari Capes Marine Park.
Mr Moore says the boat will not be used to hunt dangerous sharks because it has an inflatable hull but is perfectly safe for the job it is designed to do.
“It’s not as if there’s millions of sharks out there wanting to chomp into somebody’s boat, just in the event that we need to catch a large great white and once you catch it, the thing will be brought alongside the boat to be then shot, we don’t think it’s safe for a boat of that sort to be engaged in that activity,” he said.
Mr Moore says the new boat will enable added surveillance of sharks but will not be used to catch them.
“Probably not. It’s an inflatable hull and we don’t think that Fisheries officers should be on board a boat of that sort when you may have a five-metre great white shark which wants to put a hole in the hull,” he said.