Media Release

Newcastle City Council

16. January 2015

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Alert – All Newcastle beaches to remain closed over the weekend

All Newcastle beaches will remain closed this weekend, Saturday and Sunday 17 and 18 January, in the interest of community safety with continued sightings of two sharks in Newcastle waters today. We have also been informed that Lake Macquarie Council will keep Redhead Beach closed over the weekend.

Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes asks everyone in the community to observe the closings and stay out of the water this weekend.

“We have a serious risk to public safety right now,” said the Lord Mayor, “ and Council lifeguards are working long hours trying to make sure everyone is aware of the warning and keep them safe. We know that we have at least two sharks currently inhabiting the waters right off our beaches, a very large 5 metre Great White, and another shark that is about three and a half metres. These sharks have been sighted as recently as Friday morning and were sighted on Thursday afternoon just beyond the surf line at Burwood and Merewether beaches, which is just too close to take the risk of swimming or surfing at this time.”

“We know for certain that everyone will stay safe if we all stay out of the water until the sharks decide to move on. We continue to monitor the situation and will make everyone aware when there is any change or any updates to report.”

“We know it’s hard for people to stay away from the beaches—it’s the weekend, it’s hot, it’s still the school holidays and we all want something fun and cool to do. I want to remind everyone that we still have a variety of ways to have fun and cool off. If you want a salt water swim, head down to Newcastle or Merewether Ocean Baths, or you can choose to take a dip at one of our inland pools. There’s also indoor fun to be had at Newcastle Museum and Newcastle Art Gallery, and at night head down to our summer of sport live site at Honeysuckle for a cool drink and some AFC Asian Cup action on the big screen. Come down tonight for two matches, Palestine vs Jordan at 6pm and Iraq vs Japan at 8pm, and Saturday night for China PR vs DPR Korea at 8pm.”

The next Council update is scheduled for Monday morning.

Source: The City of Newcastle