Water Safety Week: Helping the community stay water safe

Minister for Maritime Duncan Gay today urged people to get involved in Water Safety Week and ensure they put safety first as the weather improves and they start enjoying the water again.

"The days are warmer, so recreational boaters and beachgoers need to remind themselves of the safety precautions that help ensure their day on the water is a positive experience,” Mr Gay said.

“I encourage people to get involved in Water Safety Week and learn more about simple measures that can make a world of difference including checking the water conditions, if you’re heading out on a boat put on a lifejacket and always swim between the flags.

“Key water bodies including Transport for NSW, Roads and Maritime Services, NSW Police and Surf Life Saving NSW are working together to ensure important safety messages get out far and wide.”

General Manager of the Maritime Management Centre Howard Glenn said all water bodies would be working together to help inform the community.

“This week includes a reminder to people about our zero tolerance on-water approach taken by RMS Boating Safety Officers and the NSW Police Marine Area Command to lifejacket requirements when boating,” Mr Glenn said.

“The single most important message is that people should get into the habit of putting on a lifejacket each time they head out for a day on the water, as it might just save your life.”

Surf Life Saving NSW Lifesaving Manager Andy Kent said the community was doing a great job at keeping safe in the sun and we needed to keep up the good work when it comes to the water.

“Australians have got themselves into great habits when it comes to putting on sunscreen when outdoors. In the same way, regular beach goers need to always be thinking of where the flags are before heading into the water,” Mr Kent said.

Acting Inspector Alex Barrell from Marine Area Command said whether you’re going swimming, surfing, paddling, boating or fishing, it’s important to know the conditions and possible hazards in the area.

“If you’re going swimming, remember waterways can be deceiving and it’s important to check depth, current and temperature before you get in so you’re not caught out,” A/Insp Barrell said.

Water Safety Week runs from 22-28 September and the community is encouraged to visit the Water Safety Week website at watersafety.nsw.gov.au.

Mon 22 Sep 2014