STAFF REPORTER

ARTA
IN order to reduce the number of accidents occurring in bays around the island which are harder to reach and to make evacuation easier from small coves which don't have the same accessibility in terms of infrastructure, the Balearic government is setting in motion a new “lookout” system.

In a campaign to heighten security, some 25 kilometres of coastline and 14 remote beaches lying between Cap Ferrutx and the far boundary of Capdepera in the northeastern district of Arta will be under constant watch by sea-based lifeguard units.

Regional interior minister, Maria Angeles Leciñena accompanied by Emergency director Cristina Ferrer and Arta's mayor Rafel Gili, presented the new operation yesterday in the wake of serious accidents that happen in more isolated parts of the Island's coastline on an annual basis. The mayor said he was “very happy” about the fact that isolated beach safety is being tackled. “Rescue for people in these more remote areas had been troubling us a great deal,” he confirmed. “There were fourteen beaches for which we received no financing for individual lifeguard systems, so we took the problem to the ministry and they've given us an answer.” The material now at the town council's disposal includes a motor launch, first aid kits and rescue equipment as well as communication facilities. This pilot scheme is to be extended to other districts such as Campos, Estellencs, Banyalbufar, Valldemossa, Deya, Fornalutx and Escorca. Accidents, reports reveal, frequently occur in particularly attractive stretches of remote beach or inlets - because they are hard to reach, tourists who wish to “get away from it all” are drawn to such remote spots in spite of their not possessing the lifeguard facilities available in well-used tourist resorts. Such “hideaways” may well conceal treachorous hidden currents.

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