Please select your home edition
Edition
Auckland On Water Boat Show

Wear lifejackets for boating safety

by Kevin McManus on 27 Sep 2012
.
As thousands of boaters take to the water for the traditional start of the summer boating season this weekend, Marine Rescue New South Wales Commissioner Stacey Tannos has urged skippers to always ensure everyone on board wears a lifejacket.

Commissioner Tannos said this was the simplest safety measure to help protect lives in the unfortunate event of a boating emergency.

'Between mid-1999 and December 2011, 206 of the 221 people killed in boating accidents in NSW were not wearing lifejackets. This is a terrible waste of life,' he said.

'A lifejacket can only save your life if you are wearing it. Putting on your lifejacket should be the very first thing you do when you step on board your boat and you should not take it off till you’re back on land.

'The skipper is responsible for the safety of their boat and all passengers and should ensure everyone on board wears their lifejacket at all times.

'Many accidents and mishaps are not foreseeable and conditions can change rapidly on the water. It’s not worth risking your life or those of your family and friends. You don’t want to spend the rest of your life wishing you’d been safe, not sorry.

'A range of modern, light-weight jackets that are comfortable and allow for a full range of movement is now available on the market. If you find your old-model jacket bulky and cumbersome to wear for extended periods, it’s worth considering investing in a new model.'

Marine Rescue NSW units along the coastline from Point Danger to Eden and on the Alpine Lakes are standing by for a potential spike in boating breakdowns over the long weekend and coming weeks as many skippers launch their boats again after the winter layoff.

'The October long weekend is the traditional start to the boating season in NSW and no doubt some skippers will discover, to their dismay, that something on their boat or trailer doesn’t work as it should after spending the winter months idle,' Commissioner Tannos said.

'It can take as little as three months for fuel to become contaminated so old petrol in your tank is almost certainly off. Electrical connections can corrode and there is every chance the battery will be flat.

'Over the past three years, about 50 per cent of rescue calls to MRNSW have been the result of mechanical problems, often caused by contaminated fuel. Electrical or flat battery problems cause an average of 10 per cent of calls, followed by people running out of fuel in six per cent of cases.

'This means two-thirds of all breakdowns to which our volunteers respond are caused by problems that could possibly have been prevented by thorough maintenance checks and proper preparation.

'All skippers should check their boat’s mechanics, electrical systems and trailer and have any essential maintenance work carried out before heading out for another summer on the water.

'Most importantly, check all your safety equipment. Are the lifejackets due for servicing? Check your flares and EPIRBS if you’re carrying them and replace your torch batteries. This equipment could save your life.'

Skippers should always Log On with their nearest MRNSW unit whenever they head out on the water and Log Off when they return so someone responsible knows where they’re headed and when they’re safely back on shore. If a boater does not Log Out as scheduled, MRNSW volunteers can start work to locate Marine Rescue NSW website
InSunSport - NZKiwi Yachting - Lewmar 660 - 1Hella Marine - July 2016

Related Articles

New Zealand Maritime radio channels set to change on 1 October
Before you head out on the water next summer there are some important maritime radio changes you need to know about. Before you head out on the water next summer there are some important maritime radio changes you need to know about. On 1 October 2016, New Zealand is changing some maritime VHF repeater channels, and NowCasting weather services, to make space for new international ship tracking and data services, and to make sure our VHF radio services are compatible with the rest of the world.
Posted on 20 Sep
The sound of a healthy reef
A new study from WHOI help researchers understand ways that marine larvae use sound as cue to settle on coral reefs A new study from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) will help researchers understand the ways that marine animal larvae use sound as a cue to settle on coral reefs. The study, published on August 23rd in the online journal Scientific Reports, has determined that sounds created by adult fish and invertebrates may not travel far enough for larvae —which hatch in open ocean
Posted on 31 Aug
A slithery ocean mystery
One sentence in a New York Times article caught Larry Pratt’s eye and set the scientific investigation in motion. One sentence in a New York Times article caught Larry Pratt’s eye and set the scientific investigation in motion. The story was about fishermen harvesting juvenile eels in coastal waters of the Gulf of Maine and selling them for more than $2,500 a pound, mostly for unagi in Asian fish markets.
Posted on 30 Aug
TowBoatUS Ocean City removes harmful fishing nets
Earlier this summer, three miles of open water was all that separated two efforts to protect and nurture marine life Earlier this summer, three miles of open water was all that separated two efforts to protect and nurture marine life on the Atlantic Coast.
Posted on 12 Aug
WHO statement on Zika virus
The third meeting of the EC convened by the Director-General under IHR 2005 regarding microcephaly and Zika virus The third meeting of the Emergency Committee (EC) convened by the Director-General under the International Health Regulations (2005) (IHR 2005) regarding microcephaly, other neurological disorders and Zika virus was held by teleconference on 14 June 2016, from 13:00 to 17:15 Central European Time.
Posted on 16 Jun
Have your say at Hawkesbury Shelf Marine Bioregion assessment
Marine Estate Management Authority undertakes assessment to develop options to enhance marine biodiversity conservation. The Marine Estate Management Authority has developed eight suggested management initiatives to enhance marine biodiversity conservation and help reduce priority threats.
Posted on 14 Apr
Zika virus situation report
From 1 January 2007 to 16 March 2016, Zika virus transmission was documented in a total of 59 countries and territories. From 1 January 2007 to 16 March 2016, Zika virus transmission was documented in a total of 59 countries and territories. Cuba and Dominica are the latest to report autochthonous (local) transmission of Zika virus on 14 and 15 March, respectively. Five of these countries and territories reported a Zika virus outbreak that is now over.
Posted on 2 Apr
Reef sharks take small bites
Coral reef sharks eat prey that are smaller than a cheeseburger Sharks have a reputation for having voracious appetites, but a new study shows that most coral reef sharks eat prey that are smaller than a cheeseburger
Posted on 20 Mar
What kind of damage can micro-plastics do?
We look into plastics escape from our household drains and what kind of damage they can do to marine life Although microbeads from rinse off cosmetics have received a lot of attention lately, the tiny plastics most often being found in our seafood are a different kind of synthetic. We look into marine life in the US and Australia, to find out what plastics escape our household drains and what kind of damage they can do.
Posted on 18 Mar
Suburbs to Sea - Stopping litter at the source
Over sixty people gathered at Point Cook Community Centre for a special ‘Movies and Muffins’ night to learn about litter Over sixty people gathered at Point Cook Community Centre recently for a special ‘Movies and Muffins’ night to learn about litter and its impact on the environment as part of Wyndham City’s Green Living Series.
Posted on 18 Mar