A larger, more prominent warning sign with a QR code enabling beachgoers to read the warning in multiple languages on their cell phones is planned at Conimicut Point Park, Warwick Mayor Frank Picozzi said Tuesday. Picozzi received numerous suggestions on
A larger, more prominent warning sign with a QR code enabling beachgoers to read the warning in multiple languages on their cell phones is planned at Conimicut Point Park, Warwick Mayor Frank Picozzi said Tuesday.
Picozzi received numerous suggestions on how to improve safety at the point where a 10-year old girl and a 35-year old man seeking to save her were swept off the shoal reaching toward Conimicut Point Light by the incoming tide on Father’s Day. Both drowned. Two men seeking to save the pair were pulled from the waters and admitted to Kent Hospital.
In the wake of the tragedy the mayor received suggestions to fence off the point; build a pier and remove the point. Other proposals included more signage, a sign naming those who have lost their lives at the point, offshore buoys with warning signs and a tidal warning system with alarm.
Picozzi met with the city’s police and fire chiefs, concluding that improved signage is an important step. As it would be difficult to include the warning in many languages, Picozzi said his wife, Kim, came up with the suggestion of a QR code that could be scanned for additional information.
The mayor couldn’t imagine how the point could be physically altered to improve safety. Apart from the cost of dredging to remove the shoal, Picozzi reasoned that Mother Nature would inevitably restore what was removed. A fence, he said, would violate state law guaranteeing access to the shore and could prove to be a hazard to those ignoring the barrier and getting caught by an incoming tide after wading or swimming around it.
Building a pier would require driving piles for an extensive distance and at an untold cost. In addition, a pier could become an attraction to boaters and those on shore, bringing more people to the area and increasing the chances of an accident.