The Hawkesbury City Council (HCC) has recently installed safety signs at Macquarie Park in Windsor as part of its “high-visibility and multi-lingual safety campaign.”
According to the Council, the new signs “were developed in consultation with Royal Life Saving NSW using best practice design and internationally recognized safety symbols.”
In addition, the signs come with the five most common non-English languages visitors use (all of which can be accessed by a QR code), namely Hindi, Punjabi, Simplified Chinese, Arabic and Filipino.
Before Christmas last year, the Council approached neighbouring councils and Western Sydney Regional Organisations of Councils (WSROC) to promote safety on the Hawkesbury River, as Local Government Areas are a significant source of tourism throughout the year.
The HCC is also running a social media campaign in multiple languages to raise awareness among visitors, encouraging tourists to explore alternative activities such as walking, camping, boating, fishing, and picnicking instead of swimming in local waterways.
Meanwhile, the Council encourages locals to visit local pools over the summer.
Mayor of Hawkesbury and Councillor Sarah McMahon is also encouraging Councils near Hawkesbury to help visitors be aware of the many waterways, especially the Hawkesbury River, in the region.
“This campaign is about raising awareness to save lives so that we can all have a wonderful summer without seeing tragedies like we have seen in the past,” Mayor McMahon added.
“The water in the river can be unexpectedly cold, there are submerged trees and rocks and deceptively strong currents. Sometimes people may overestimate their swimming ability, or may have consumed alcohol before swimming, or may be unfamiliar with local conditions or recent changes to the river.
“Local rivers and other waterways can be dangerous places to swim, even for experienced swimmers. Unfortunately, drownings have occurred in local waterways over the years.”
The 24-hectare Macquarie Park is located in Windsor.