Following the success at Boucan Canot, where Reunion Island's first shark safety net was installed, Roches Noires has become the second location to be declared safe for swimming and surfing. On Friday, the green flags were raised along this beach, signaling to locals and visitors alike that the waters along this beach had been secured.
Swimmers, surfers and stand-up paddlers had lined up at the beaches, and the moment the green flags were hoisted, they took to the water in large numbers.
A press conference was held on the site of the Esplanade des Roches Noires with French Senator and President of the Region Reunion, Mr. Didier Robert, flanked by Mr. Patrick Flores, the District Deputy of Saint-Gilles-les-Bains and Saline-les-Bains, and the sub-prefect of St. Paul, Mrs. Chantal Ambroise. They officially announced the securing of the swimming area and water sports on the beach of Roches Noires where a net of 531 meters in length now secures a protected area of 57,000 m². The monitoring of swimmers and surfers is ensured by the MNS and reinforced by a permanent observation patrol which works hand in hand with monitors in the area.
Eight-times surfing World Champion, Ms. Johanne Defay, was also present for the event, and on the occasion received from Mr. Patrick Serveaux, President of Reunion Island Tourism (IRT), the title of Honorary Tourism Ambassador of Reunion Island. She became the 71st person to join the circle of tourism ambassadors of Reunion Island. Her mission: to help promote the island around the world and to help market Reunion Island to tourists.
Work is meanwhile continuing at two more beaches - Trois-Bassins and Aigrettes - to install shark safety nets, due to be launched in a few weeks’ time.