Take note of markers

By Country News

Visitors to Lake Eppalock are now safer in the event of a fire, accident or medical emergency with a network of emergency markers installed in strategic locations around the lake.

The emergency marker project has been completed in time for the influx of thousands of summer visitors who swim, boat and fish in one of Australia’s most popular inland lakes.

The markers, installed by Goulburn-Murray Water and funded by Transport for Victoria’s Boating Safety and Facilities Program, resemble large street signs with white text on a green background.

Each has a unique alphanumeric code made up of three letters and three numbers.

In an emergency situation, 000 callers can quote the code — which is linked to the Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority (ESTA) database — specifying the location of the incident, GPS co-ordinates, best road access route and navigational data, so that emergency services can respond as quickly as possible.

‘‘This will save lives,’’ Eppalock Fire Brigade’s group officer David Cleator said.

With a number of brigades backing onto the lake, Mr Cleator said knowing the exact location of an emergency was crucial to improving response times.

He said emergencies at Lake Eppalock could range from fires to accidents or someone suffering a heart attack while fishing.

G-MW recreation and land operations officer Chris Braden said the markers had been installed at 27 sites chosen for maximum coverage of the lake, particularly for those on a boat.

Locations include Lake Eppalock’s public boat ramps, commercial caravan park ramps and the lake perimeter and visitors are encouraged to take note of the nearest code while on or around the lake.