Surf Life Saving Australia’s thoughts are with the Barclay family today. We continue to, and always will remember Matthew.
This has been a difficult time for the Barclay family and the entire Surf Life Saving community.
Matthew was a champion junior athlete and the winner of the under-15 Ironman final at the Australian Championships now receives the Matthew Barclay Memorial Trophy, named in his honour.
Surf Life Saving Australia has received today’s findings and recommendations from the Coroner. We have reviewed these and will continue to analyse the recommendations.
The safety of Surf Life Saving members remains first and foremost, and continues to be an integral step in the planning and development of its national events.
A number of safety initiatives have been implemented at a national level in order to ensure the improved safety of our members. This includes new risk management and safety procedures at all surf sport events.
Together with Standards Australia we have undertaken research and developed a fit-for-purpose Level 25 lifejacket, designed for use in specific surf sport activities. Following the outcomes of this research, new rules mandating the use of lifejackets in conditions of heightened risk will come into effect on October 1, 2016.
The mandatory use of helmets for surfboat rowers under surf conditions of heightened risk has been introduced. A Surf Hazard rating has also been introduced for surfboat events, which in turn determines when helmets must be worn.
Surf Life Saving Australia has made a commitment to the ongoing continuous improvement of safety at surf sports events. However, today we remember a talented young man and offer our most sincere sympathy to the Barclay family. Matthew Barclay will forever be part of the Surf Life Saving family.