‘Do not swim’: Blunt government warning for Fraser visitors

A WARNING from the Queensland government is offering blunt advice for visitors to Fraser Island.

"Do not swim in the ocean as it is not patrolled and there may be rips and sharks," the Department of Environment and Science website reads.

"Stay away from rocks. Surf and swell can quickly wash you away."

The Chronicle contacted the department following the Indian Head shark attack which claimed the life of Sunshine Coast spear fisherman Matthew Tratt yesterday.

A spokesman from the department directed the Chronicle to the website when asked whether tourists were adequately warned about the dangers of the island upon arriving.

Warnings for both sharks and crocodiles can be found on the Fraser Island section of the website.

It warns parents to stay with children near the water and to never dive as serious injuries have occurred.

A lengthy part of the website is devoted to warnings about dingo dangers on the island.

The website also mentions confirmed sightings of saltwater crocodiles in the Mary River and credible sightings in the Great Sandy Strait and the western coastline of the island.

"Crocodiles are a native animal and protected in Queensland," the website read.

"The accepted habitat range of the estuarine crocodile in Queensland extends from Torres Strait south to the Boyne River, just south of Gladstone.

"However there have been records of estuarine crocodiles as far south as the Logan River, Brisbane."

Visitors are warned to avoid entering the water and to stay alert when launching or retrieving boats or moving fishing gear.


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