Close call at Far North Queensland waterway could have been tragic

13 Oct 2014

The school holidays could have ended in tragedy for a group of six, including five children, caught taking risks at Nardellos Lagoon near Walkamin on the Atherton Tableland.

SunWater Mareeba Service Manager Charlie Martens said the group was seen swimming and fishing near the outlet gate in the lagoon around 12.30pm on Thursday, 2 October and were immediately told to move on.

"It’s alarming to witness members of the public ignoring warning signs and being so reckless in and around our water infrastructure," Mr Martens said.

"Outlet gates can open and close suddenly to let water out of the lagoon into adjoining channels.

"Anyone swimming too close to the gates risks being caught in the gates or swept downstream as the water can move quickly and with force.

"A SunWater employee spotted the group venturing too close to the outlet gate at Nardellos Lagoon before it was too late, as the consequences could have been deadly.

"The public should take heed of the signage and not enter SunWater land, especially areas of higher risk such as this.

"It only takes a few moments to read the signs and play it safe on the water and around our infrastructure to avoid tragedy."


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