Police are warning tourists in search of the ultimate selfie

An example of a dangerous selfie posted to popular social media site Instagram.
An example of a dangerous selfie posted to popular social media site Instagram.

NORTHERN Grampians police have issued a warning against endangering themselves for the ultimate ‘selfie’.

Police posted the warning on social media Wednesday.

It stated ‘one of the issues that is constantly tying up our resources is individuals risking life and limb in a bid to get the "ultimate selfie"’ in the Grampians National Park.

Sergeant Russell Brown, of Halls Gap, said it was “absolutely ludicrous” to see posts on social media of people standing on ledges and other dangerous places in the Grampians to get a photo of themselves.

“From an emergency services point of view it’s quite frustrating when you see that irresponsible action that can lead to serious injury or death,” he said.

Sergeant Brown said he recently saw a video online of a young man performing a back-flip on Boroka Ridge. 

“If you fall, you die,” he said.

Sergeant Brown said people then posting the images on social media only served to exacerbate the issue.

The Grampians attracts plenty of tourists, many of whom police say take risks for a photo. Picture: LACHIE WILLIAMS.

The Grampians attracts plenty of tourists, many of whom police say take risks for a photo. Picture: LACHIE WILLIAMS.

“It encourages bad behaviour,” he said. 

“Some people have got onto that site and disagreed with his actions but others are encouraging it, thinking it’s wonderful.”

Sergeant Brown said the behaviour came down to decision making skills.

“If this turns bad you’ve got to be thinking of your family, friends and other people who have to become involved,” he said.

A global study was released in mid-2018 that there had been 259 ‘selfie’ deaths between October 2011 to November 2017.

An example of risky behaviour taken for the ultimate selfie.

An example of risky behaviour taken for the ultimate selfie.

Three quarters of those were in males, with those dying most frequently in their early to mid-20s.

The report concluded ‘“no selfie zones” areas should be declared across tourist areas, especially places such as water bodies, mountain peaks, and over tall buildings to decrease the incidence of selfie-related deaths.

Signs may not be enough.

Ambulance Victoria Wimmera Regional Manager Tim Maywald said people often ignored them, to their own detriment.

“Mackenzie Falls – that’s been our most tragic thing that we’ve had to attend out there and again, it was clearly signed not to swim and people do,” he said.

“You get people out there who are inexperienced in that sort of environment and because it is so accessible, I think people underestimate the potential (danger).

“It’s not to say they shouldn’t go there and have a good time and take plenty of photos, they just need to have a real increase of awareness levels and the safety of themselves and others.”