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Fishermen breaking the law by cutting fences and ignoring signs


More than twenty fishermen were witnessed by SunWater staff fishing in a restricted area at Kinchant Dam throughout the past week.

The fishermen cut fences and ignored various signs to fish near the dam’s spillway presumably in pursuit of a big catch.

Due to the recent rainfall in the area, SunWater commenced pumping water via a diversion channel from the Pioneer River into Kinchant Dam.

SunWater’s Northern Service Manager, Jim Mummery said there are very good reasons why some areas are restricted to public access at dams and this behaviour will not be tolerated.

“We take safety at our dams and weirs extremely seriously and as we are witnessing so many fishermen trespassing in this area, a Police presence has been required to move trespassers on.

“We are urging all fishermen and tackle shops in the Mackay area to not enter restricted areas for safety reasons and that it is illegal to ignore signs and cross fences to enter this site.

“There are plenty of areas where it is safe to fish and we ask people to observe our signs and the messages in our new safety campaign – taking risks around dams and weirs is dangerous, read the signs and stay safe.

“Our staff are closely monitoring this site and will continue to report trespassers to the local Police”, Jim said.

Senior Constable Christopher Tetley from Eton Police Station said the Police are concerned about members of the public who ignore signs, trespass on private property and put themselves in danger.

“Unfortunately we have visited this site at Kinchant Dam on a number of occasions now to escort fishermen from the site.

"It is illegal to enter private property for a range of reasons including public safety," Senior Constable Christopher Tetley said.

"It only takes common sense to read the signs, obey the law and avoid tragedy."

Further information regarding SunWater dam levels and camping regulations is also available on the SunWater website at:

Kinchant Dam is situated six kilometres southeast of Mirani and is used predominately for the irrigation of sugar cane in the area. Water is pumped from the Pioneer River during certain streamflow events.

Media Enquiries

SunWater Media Team
Phone: +61 7 3120 0047