Sea life not adversely affected by superboats, official says

FEARS that Fraser Coast sea life might have been adversely affected during last years' Superboats Championships were unfounded, according to a race official.

Race director Russell Embleton said he and other race officials were working with the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service to ensure dolphins, turtles and dugongs would be unaffected by the race this year as well.

Mr Embleton said there had been no sightings of any wildlife last year and this year's course would be similar to the one designed last year.

He said it was satisfying there had been no reports of injuries to animals at last year's event.

If sea life was spotted during a race, the race could be stopped, Mr Embleton said.

"We are pretty content with the methods and plans we've put in place," he said.

Fraser Coast Mayor Gerard O'Connell said the event would bring millions of dollars to the economy of the Fraser Coast, as well as showcasing the region on a large scale.

He said race organisers were taking necessary precautions to protect sea life.

Reefworld owner Greg Wolff, who has cared for turtles struck by vessels in the past, said there could be some substance to wildlife concerns expressed by some people, but he felt the advantages of having the event outweighed the risks.

"It's good for the Bay," he said of the superboat event, which will be held in waters off Hervey Bay on November 10.

Mr Wolff said animals would hear the noise created by the boats and would swim away from the area.



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