Surfers may soon be banned from North Bondi under a new plan proposed by Waverley Council to provide safer conditions for swimmers.
“Residential concerns” have caused the council to create the Lifeguard Service Risk Review, which proposes a “buffer zone” preventing surfers from using the northern end of one of Australia’s most famous beaches.
Bondi Beach was named a National Surfing Reserve in 2017.
Boards with fins, including soft boards which are used by those learning to surf, would not be allowed in the water at North Bondi, even though research shows that most people using the beach are surfers.
Independent counts found that 84% of people in the water are using the beach outside the flags — a patrolled area dedicated for swimmers only.
A survey to determine whether the proposed plan goes ahead has been sent to stakeholders including surf clubs, board-riders groups, and surf training schools.
On the survey page, it even says the proposed plan could create an increased risk of injury to the 84% of beach users due to surfcraft congestion.
Dean Dunstan, a Bondi boardrider says that the north end is better for beginner surfers, as the swell is a bit smaller and more protected by the headland, and the south end is better for more advanced surfers as there’s more swell and movement.
A council spokesperson said that no action will be taken until survey results are collected on Friday, August 10.
This area is notoriously dangerous for both surfers and swimmers.
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