Pre-Easter Marine Safety Check
Officers from the Northern Territory Water Police Section (WPS) and Marine Safety Branch will be conducting a free pre–Easter Marine Safety Education morning at the Dinah Beach boat ramp on Saturday 13 April 2019.
This initiative has been established in the lead up to Easter to remind Territorians to be conscious of their safety when out on the water this holiday season.
Every year many Top End residents and visitors to the Territory spend Easter out in the NT’s amazing waterways fishing, and every year police are tasked with a high number of search and rescue operations. Most incidents that occur on the water are avoidable with careful planning and preparation.
WPS members will be on-hand this Saturday morning to help fishos and boaties understand what they need to do to ensure an adventure doesn’t end in disaster. Boat owners launching at the ramp will have the opportunity to have their boat inspected and be educated about compliance and safety requirements.
They will be joined by partner marine rescue agencies in Surf Lifesaving NT and the Darwin branch of the Australian Volunteer Coastguard. The Department of Tourism, Sport and Culture’s Crocodile Management Team will also be on hand to promote the ‘Be Crocwise’ message, with a little help from a snappy friend.
The event is also an opportunity to raise funds for those volunteer organisations which are crucial to the success of search and rescue operations coordinated by police. A sausage sizzle will be cooking with plenty of free giveaways, as well as a raffle with great prizes, and all proceeds going towards volunteer organisations.
Some of the safety messages people can expect include:
- Check your boat, service your engine, and beware of old fuel. If it’s old fuel, in the Top End’s humid tropical climate you can be assured it will now have plenty of water mixed in. Don’t take the risk!
- Check you have all the minimum safety gear required for the waters you will be in. Check flares are in date, and that everything works including your torch and EPIRB. Carry plenty of water.
- Keep alcohol consumption to a minimum. Be responsible, stay sober.
- Check the condition of lifejackets. Each person on board must have one and they should be the appropriate size and design.
Plan your voyage. Tell someone where you’ll be and when you intend to return.
- If you have a VHF radio, turn it on and monitor Channel 16 and 67 for distress calls and weather updates.
- Observe the “rules of the road” when navigating in the harbour. Never anchor in shipping channels and give large vessels a clear path. They cannot and will not alter course to avoid you.