National 11.8.2016 11:29 am

South Coast ‘decked out’ over Blue Flag status

Blue Flag South Africa has been assured that the clearing of the dune at the Trafalgar Blue Flag beach is being investigated. Picture: South Coast Herald

Blue Flag South Africa has been assured that the clearing of the dune at the Trafalgar Blue Flag beach is being investigated. Picture: South Coast Herald

The Hibiscus Coast already complies with the Blue Flag requirements for disabled people.

Blue Flag South Africa has confirmed that it did not require or request the development of a wooden deck at Trafalgar beach in order for the beach to comply with the Blue Flag criteria, reports the South Coast Herald.

As stated on the Blue Flag South Africa website, a Blue Flag is an international award given to “beaches, boats and marinas that meet excellence in the areas of safety, amenities, cleanliness and environmental standards”.

In a letter to the South Coast Herald, Ronel Kotze, a member of the Trafalgar Sector Police, said the Trafalgar Safety Committee had arranged a potjiekos competition with the intention of “clearing the dense bush at the beach (as per the rules of the Blue Flag Beach governing body)” and to build a viewing deck for disabled residents and tourists.

However, regarding the recent clearing and levelling of a primary dune at the Blue Flag beach, she said her organisation did not know who had been responsible for “the felling of the trees” at Trafalgar. She said the potjiekos proceeds had not yet been used to “better Trafalgar’s Blue Flag status”.

“The Sector Police, in accordance with Criteria 33 of the rules of the Blue Flag Beach, intends to erect facilities for disabled people,” she added.

In response to this, Blue Flag South Africa spokesman, Vincent Shacks, said it was not necessary to erect a viewing platform to conform with Blue Flag requirements.

“The Hibiscus Coast Municipality has already adhered to the requirement of having at least one of their Blue Flag beaches accessible to disabled persons,” he said.

Regarding the clearing of the dune at Trafalgar, Shacks said his organisation was in regular contact with the beach manager regarding this issue. Blue Flag South Africa had been assured that the required investigations were taking place.

The Blue Flag South Africa programme would continue to monitor this process and to ensure that adequate rehabilitation of this damaged area would take place before the start of the new Blue Flag season in November 2016.

Caxton News Service

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