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Lifejackets and boat I/D the focus on the water this summer

5 November 2012

Lifejackets and boat I/D the focus on the water this summer

Boaties are being reminded the single most important thing they can do this summer is ensure everyone on their vessel is wearing a life jacket, according to Hawke’s Bay Regional Council Harbourmaster Phil Norman.

He says with the weather warming up more people will be hitting the water and his team will be out and about ensuring people are making the right choice by wearing a life jacket.

New bylaws introduced in Hawke’s Bay early this year mean it is now compulsory for those going out on the water in a vessel six metres or less and all paddle craft to wear a life jacket, including canoes, kayaks and waka ama. On all vessels there must enough life jackets for everyone on board.

Previously those in small craft were only required to carry life jackets, however HBRC Harbourmaster Captain Phil Norman says evidence shows there is an increased risk to people in boats less than six metres and paddle craft.

“Our main focus this summer will be on ensuring people wear life jackets when they’re out on the water,” says Captain Norman.

He says another focus will be the a second new bylaw introduced at the beginning of this year which requires all vessels to be marked with a name or similar identifying marks on each side of the vessel.

“This bylaw means wherever they are all vessels are easily identified.”

Captain Norman says harbourmaster staff will be out and about around Hawke’s Bay waterways throughout summer answering any queries people may have about the bylaws and ensuring people are being safe in the water. HBRC has also developed a promotional poster highlighting how important it is to wear a life jacket. These posters will be put up at various locations around the region. If people want more information on the new bylaws through can visit www.hbrc.govt.nz

ENDS

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