Ben’s legacy an emergency lifesaver

Saskia AdystiAlbany Advertiser

New beach emergency number signs will now be available on Great Southern Beaches to provide people with vital location information during emergency situations.

The idea for the BEN signs was put forward by Rick Gerring after his brother Ben died in a great white shark attack in Mandurah.

The incident inspired Rick Gerring to introduce the signage on WA beaches to minimise delays from emergency services when trying to locate the closest beach point during an incident.

“Our coastline is vast and sometimes there can be numerous access points,” Mr Gerring said.

“The BEN signage will direct services to that exact location.

“For Ben’s legacy to be saving lives is a proud and humble moment.”

Each sign will have a unique code, a street address and the nearest cross street — vital information during an emergency situation such as a shark attack.

The State Government encouraged regional councils including Albany, Denmark and Esperance to apply for funding to install the BEN sign system.

Fisheries Minister Dave Kelly introduced the signs to Albany on Wednesday and encouraged the City of Albany to use the signs around local beaches.

“By installing these signs, the councils are helping emergency services locate the site of an incident faster, which could ultimately save a life,” he said.

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