Northern Territory Police are reminding recreational boaters to ensure that they not only have the necessary safety equipment on board their vessels, but that they check all of their equipment is working properly.
Senior Sergeant Sandi Mellon said, “Maintenance and testing of the equipment in the boat should go beyond getting your motor serviced at the appropriate times, but also extends to checking whether all important equipment is working every single time you go out on the water.”
Over the weekend, a skipper activated an emergency beacon (EPIRB) when his vessel capsized in high winds off Dundee Beach. The stricken vessel had experienced a bilge pump failure.
“The beacon provided the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre in Canberra with the vessel’s location, and Water Police section deployed the PV Chambers Bay to attend. Two private yachts in the vicinity were tasked to attend the location as well.
“One of the yachts was first to the scene, where the crew on board located a 4.5m vessel upturned and two people clinging to the hull. They were taken on board and conveyed back toward Dundee. Water Police met the yacht and conveyed the rescued pair back to the boat ramp.
“Incidents like this demonstrate how important it is to have the right safety equipment on board. The skipper was well-prepared and could quickly raise the alarm with a location. Our thanks too, to the skippers of the two private vessels that responded to assist and enabled everyone to get home safely.
Before heading out on the water, always remember to:
- Check your safety gear
- Check the weather reports
- Check your equipment is in working order.