Beach driving tourism ad causes concern on Kangaroo Island

SCREEN GRAB: The promotional video included sped-up footage of a Landcruiser driving down Emu Bay beach.
SCREEN GRAB: The promotional video included sped-up footage of a Landcruiser driving down Emu Bay beach.

The South Australian Tourism Commission will edit an advertisement to remove footage of a four-wheel-drive vehicle appearing to speed down Emu Bay beach.

Concerns about the ad were raised by members of BirdLife Australia on KI, the KI Council and the KI Brand Alliance, who wrote to the SATC stating beach access is limited by KI Council regulation to a small number of beaches where minimal access is encouraged and speed signs encourage safe driving to protect other beach users and wildlife, particularly beach-nesting birds.

"We respectfully request that this ad be withdrawn and re-made to better reflect our brand values," the correspondence read.

Greens MP Mark Parnell MLC, a regular visitor and admirer of the Island's shorebirds, pledged to address the issue in parliament.

A SATC spokesperson said the ad in question was part of a series of national advertisements, designed to promote SA and its 11 tourism regions.

The vision captured at KI included a brief shot of a 4WD on Emu Bay beach, a destination that is iconic for its long, clear shoreline and well-known for its direct vehicle access. SATC acknowledges the video was sped up for dramatic effect.

"We understand there are concerns among some locals about the native plover population and because of this, we made the decision to edit the ad to remove the shot," the spokesperson said.

"The shot was filmed legally, within the speed limit and on the stretch of beach which is accessible to vehicles throughout the year. The vehicle also sticks to the waterline, well away from the sand dunes."

This story Beach driving tourism ad causes concern on Kangaroo Island first appeared on The Islander.

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