Boat Summit to focus on recreational boat standards

Boating Summit Down Under shapes up for world view

The National Marine Safety Committee (NMSC)’s Summit on recreational boat standards will provide an insight into how the standards used in the world market are changing to meet today’s challenges.
The Summit Down Under, to be held on 21-22 May on Queensland’s Gold Coast, will feature speakers from the international standards committee on small craft (ISO/TC188), which is meeting on the Gold Coast just prior to the Summit.

The Summit coincides with the Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show and gives marine industry delegates the chance to hear international experts discuss the latest developments in recreational boating standards and how they will affect the industry. NMSC CEO Ms Margie O’Tarpey said the NMSC has worked hard to improve basic safety standards for recreational boating in Australia and that the next step is to take a more prominent role in the international standards arena.

“The Summit’s seminar planned for the 22 May will look into the harmonisation of standards as well as emerging safety issues affecting the design and construction of recreational boats and the impact of those issues on standards,” Ms O’Tarpey said. 

Aligning the standards used in the US and Europe would make life a lot easier for everyone – including Australian companies that use both sets of standards.  “The Summit is a way of engaging our local recreational boating industry in discussion with their world counterparts”.

Australian based ISO Small Craft Committee Chairman Nik Parker explained that the TC188 is currently working on standards covering safety topics including structure (specifically keels), stability (with a focus on multihulls and smaller boats), fire protection (including CO detection) and new technologies such as ‘fly-by-wire’ steering systems and engine emissions.

“The latter is a key subject for the recreational marine industry keen to play its part in understanding and if necessary reducing the impact of boating on the environment,” he added.   

Australian recreational boat manufacturer Mustang Marine will join local stakeholders at the Summit. Mustang’s Design Manager Graham Langdown is on the Australian Mirror Committee to ISO.

“We are familiar with both the EU and US requirements and all boats leaving the factory, irrespective of whether local or EU bound, are CE Certified,” Mr Langdown said.

“However, the interpretation and application of both European and US requirements is challenging to say the least.
“The Summit will help explain how best to move forward to a common set of world standards”.

Delegates can also attend the Summit Down Under dinner on the preceding night (21 May), as it is an ideal opportunity to meet with the ISO experts.

Register now! The Early Bird offer closes on 31 March 2009. For more details go to   or call (02) 9247 2124.

The NMSC aims to achieve nationally uniform marine safety practices and is made up of the CEOs of Australia’s marine safety agencies.