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Lifejackets save lives, learn how to look after yours for free at Port Stephens

by Leigh Wannan 25 Mar 23:37 UTC 31 March 2019
Lifejacket clinic © rms.nsw.gov.au

Free lifejacket clinics will be held at Port Stephens this Sunday, as part of a new phase of the successful NSW Government wear a lifejacket program.

The clinic will be held on Sunday 31 March at Little Beach Boat Ramp, between 12pm and 3pm.

Acting Executive Director NSW Maritime Mark Hutchings said the clinic will see Roads and Maritime staff teaching boaters how to carry out a simple pre-wear check before use and how to service inflatable lifejackets.

"We know that lifejackets save lives but they can only do so when they are maintained correctly and in good working order," Mr Hutchings said.

"Inflatable lifejackets are easy to wear, comfortable and affordable, but they require extra care and attention to ensure they will inflate in an emergency.

"It's a legal requirement in NSW to service inflatable lifejackets every year or in accordance with manufacturers' instructions. Penalties apply if a lifejacket is found not have been serviced as required.

"Some manufacturers allow self-service of inflatable lifejackets and at these clinics Roads and Maritime Services will provide you with advice on how to do this.

"For lifejackets that can't be self-serviced, Roads and Maritime Services will provide you with advice on how to find an accredited lifejacket service agent.

"More than 300 people attended the trial clinics throughout February, and we are happy to be rolling out the program with more clinics scheduled throughout the year.

"Boaters who come along to the Port Stephens clinic will be eligible to receive free lifejacket parts kits or $15 vouchers which can be used towards the purchase of a new lifejacket or parts at participating marine retailers.

Mr Hutchings said all boaters are encouraged to wear lifejackets at all times on the water.

"NSW has some of the best waterways in the country and we want people to enjoy their time on the water, but we want to make sure people do so safely.

"Everyone needs to know how to conduct a simple pre-wear check every time they use an inflatable lifejacket. It only takes a minute to check the basics like cartridges good to go and screwed in hand tight and emergency pull cord is out and ready to go.

"Remember; wear a lifejacket... don't risk your life.

"We are encouraging anyone who is interested in the event to register ahead of time."

To register to attend a free clinic, please visit rms.nsw.gov.au/lifejacketclinics.

This program supports the NSW Government's Towards Zero campaign to reduce fatalities on the waterways.

For more information on lifejackets, visit maritimemanagement.transport.nsw.gov.au

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