SLSA says helmets will be worn in some circumstances
SURF Life Saving Australia says competitors at its events will only be required to wear helmets during certain situations.
The organisation ran the 2012 Gold Coast competition where 14-year-old Maroochydore resident Matthew Barclay drowned.
Late today it said surf craft users would wear helmets under "conditions of heightened risk".
Matthew's father Stephen Barclay backed Queensland State Coroner Terry Ryan's recommendation earlier today that young surf craft users be required to wear helmets while competing in SLSA events.
"A surf hazard rating has also been introduced for surfboat events, which in turn determines when helmets must be worn," the SLSA said
"Surf Life Saving Australia has received today's findings and recommendations from the coroner."
Matthew was one of three teenagers to lose his life while competing in the Australian Surf Life Saving Championships over the past 20 years.
Robert Gatenby, 15, drowned in 1996 after a surfboat collision in rough seas.
In 2010 a surf ski hit Saxon Bird, 19, in the head and knocked him out.
SLSA president Graham Ford said after the inquest the organisation rolled out some coronial safety suggestions following Saxon Bird's death.
"We're committed to (safety) and we've already implemented a number of recommendations of the original coronial inquest into the death of Saxon Bird," he said.
EARLIER: SLSA to further analyse recommendations of Barclay inquest
IT REMAINS to be seen whether the nation's surf life saving governing body will adopt recommendations made following an inquest into the death of Coast teen Matthew Barclay.
Barclay died after an incident in the surf during the 2012 national titles at Kurrawa.
The Maroochydore clubman's death- the third at Kurrawa- sparked a coronial inquest with Queensland State Coroner Terry Ryan handing down his findings earlier today.
Five recommendations were made as part of the findings, among them, that Surf Life Saving Australia implement mandatory use of helmets and life jackets for all competitors aged 17 and under in all surf craft events and no surf events can begin without rescue boats ready on the water to be called into action.
While the SLSA were unable to confirm whether the recommendations would be adopted, the sport's peak governing body said research was ongoing into a fit-for-purpose life jacket, as the SLSA would continue to analyse Coroner Ryan's recommendations.
"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 SLSA statement issued tonight read.
"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 statement went on to add that mandatory use of helmets had already been introduced in certain conditions.
"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," the statement read.
How do you think safety measures should be introduced into surf life saving?
This poll ended on 17 January 2016.
Helmets and life jackets for both juniors and seniors in all conditions
Juniors only, helmets and life jackets but only when conditions are dangerous
No safety equipment, but organisers cancelling events when conditions become dangerous
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
"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."
Former ironwoman champ and prominent junior coach Kerri Thomas said she believed the safest approach was to make decisions based on conditions, and be prepared to relocate or cancel events to ensure safety.
"If conditions are getting extreme you have to take that element away form them (juniors)," she said.
She said she believed helmets and life jackets could work for ski and paddle events, but could hinder athletes in swim events.
"You don't want to be restricted in big surf," she said.
Current Noosa Heads ironwoman Kirsty Higgison said equipment would have to be race-tested, but believed the helmet and life jackets could be useful for juniors competing in ski and board events in heavier conditions.