This summer, every water user is being urged to not fall back on excuses, know how to keep themselves safe and know the rules.
This year again, Maritime NZ and local harbourmaster have been holding a series of ‘No Excuess’ days across the summer, which started at Labour Weekend, and they have been handing out infringement notices for anyone on the on the water not following the local bylaws.
In particular for the carriage and wearing of lifejackets on crafts under six metres – which includes canoes, surf boards, surf skis and paddle boards if outside of the surf zone.
Fines up $300 can be issued for not following these rules.
In terms of boaties, you can help by modelling good safety behaviour around the water and talking with boaties about it – encouraging them where they’ve got it right, and supporting those who need more guidance.
Maritime NZ deputy director Sharyn Forsyth says SLSNZ is an important part of the safer boating group and they ‘support the great work surf life savers do’.
“You are an important part of the safer boating community. As well as the work you do helping boaties in trouble near the coast, you can also help by spreading the word: ‘Wear your lifejacket’ and ‘take two waterproof ways to call for help’ are the key messages to help keep boaties safer.”
“Above all, keep up the great work you do helping keep us safer on the water,” she says.
Don’t paddle alone.
Always wear a lifejacket/PFD, but don’t assume this alone will save you.
Wear clothing in anticipation of being in the water for an extended period.
Make sure your two forms of communication are attached to your body, not your craft. Don’t rely on bystanders to raise the alarm.
Make sure you are leashed to your craft.
Make sure you are capable of remounting in all conditions.
Call for rescue early!