Authorities are warning to take care on the water this Australia Day
Authorities are warning to take care on the water this Australia Day

WARNING: Big waves mean take care on water

With big seas already causing havoc throughout the area, it’s time to think about taking care on the water.

Marine Rescue NSW volunteers on the North Coast are ready for a surge of boaters heading on to local waterways for an extra-long Australia Day weekend and the last days of the school holidays.

Regional Operations Manager John Murray appealed to all boaters to make safety their highest priority and take extra care among the increased traffic from Wooli to the Queensland border.

“It’s already been a busy start to the year and our volunteers are well prepared for a huge influx of boaters on the water from sunrise today through to sunset on Australia Day,” he said.

“Our teams on the North Coast have launched 46 rescue missions, including 22 in response to life-endangering emergencies since the start of summer. They have returned 78 people, including 5 children, safely to shore.

“The forecast is for days of hot, fine weather and many people are no doubt taking Monday off to enjoy a four-day weekend for Australia Day. We know boaters will be flocking to the spectacular North Coast one last time before the return to school and work next week.”

Mr Murray said MRNSW wanted everyone to have a great time on the water – but most importantly, to return home safely.

Authorities are warning to take care on the water this Australia Day
Authorities are warning to take care on the water this Australia Day

“It’s vital to make sure everyone on board is wearing a lifejacket and that you Log On with Marine Rescue NSW on VHF Channel 16 or the free Marine Rescue App,” he said.

“This free service gives you the peace of mind of knowing our volunteers are watching out for your safe return and that if you don’t Log Off as planned, they will start searching for you.”

Mr Murray said it was concerning that many of the rescue missions launched over summer could have been avoided if boaters had taken simple safety precautions.

“Just over half of the rescue operations in this region in December and January have been in response to boats out of fuel, with flat batteries or engine failure,” he said.

“These can easily be prevented by checking your engine and battery are in good condition and that your fuel tank is full before heading out.”

He said MRNSW crews often were called to help boaters who had misjudged weather and sea conditions.

“Check weather and sea conditions before heading out and regularly throughout the day, as conditions can change quickly. You can get up-to-date forecasts from your local Marine Rescue base by calling on VHF Channel 16 at any time.”


Burnett councillor in court to defend civil complaint

Premium Content Burnett councillor in court to defend civil complaint

“DEVOID OF ANY GROUNDS”: The magistrate hearing a civil complaint against South...

Increased fire danger across the Central and North Burnett

Premium Content Increased fire danger across the Central and North Burnett

The QFES area director for the Burnett has warned of increased fire risk across the...

Burnett mum calls principal ‘f--king bitch’, police called

Premium Content Burnett mum calls principal ‘f--king bitch’, police called

A South Burnett mum has been placed on a good behaviour bond after lashing out at a...