During summer we all get many water safety messages, particularly along the coast. They are a good reminder for visitors, but the message is there for all of us: we cannot take water safety for granted, even the most experienced water users.
This morning I would like to praise the actions of Glenn Smith, Stephen Dawes and Jim Barrow, who rescued a very experienced sailor, Brett Thomas. No-one could have predicted the accident that forced Mr Thomas into the water with serious injuries. These three men were on the scene within minutes and were able to get the seriously injured man out of the water. The police, the ambulance staff and air ambulance personnel who took Mr Thomas to the Royal Melbourne Hospital are to be congratulated on their professionalism and coordination. The St Leonards yacht club safety system came through with flying colours.
We had a timely recovery by members on the bay, but we also had quick action in the clubhouse. The bravery that was demonstrated on the day was enormous, and I am pleased that the club has seen fit to recognise this by presenting bravery recognition awards to Glenn Smith, Stephen Dawes and Jim Barrow.