NSW Maritime conducted their first state-wide compliance check of the year ‘Operation Safe Skippers’, on Sunday.
The campaign focussed on the dangers of speeding, proper use of safety equipment and awareness of weather patterns and boat capabilities.
NSW Maritime has observed an increase in boating, including people to new boating.
There’s been a significant increase in new boaters – between May and December there was a 52% increase in new boat licences compared to the previous year (2019).
The campaign over the weekend was to support new boaters on NSW waterways.
Here in the Clarence Valley compliance checks were carried out on 70 vessels in the Clarence River, from Grafton through to Yamba.
The main offences related to: Vessels not keeping a safe distance from other vessels and swimmers, not wearing or service a lifejacket as required, missing the required safety equipment on a vessel, unregistered vessel and not carry boat driving licence.
Authorities noted a lot of people from Sydney and the Northern Tablelands were operating vessels on the Clarence River over the weekend.
A NSW Mairitme local Boating Safety Officer received a strange complaint on Sunday. There was a report of two Personal Watercraft (PWCs) (Queensland registered) conducting irregular riding near the Pacific Highway (north arm), spraying water on the passing cars.
The NSW Maritime Boating Safety Officer attended however, the PWCs had left the area.