NSW Maritime to conduct oyster industry checks
NSW Maritime will conduct an oyster industry compliance and education campaign during the month of April.
NSW Maritime Regional Manager North Coast Jim Green said NSW Maritime Boating Safety Officers would be making random checks of vessels used in oyster farming to ensure they are complying with safety regulations – for themselves and other boat users.
Oyster farming takes place year-round in NSW with farming predominantly on the North Coast on estuaries including Wallis Lake, Macleay River, Hastings River and the Nambucca River.
“There are many vessels involved in the oyster industry, carting quantities of the shellfish around the waterways.
“We will be checking to see that these vessels are carrying the appropriate safety equipment and that the skipper has the appropriate qualifications.
“We will also be keeping an eye out to ensure that vessels are not overloaded with trays of oysters.
“The trays and sticks carrying oysters can often be quite heavy, but each vessel has a specific capacity and must not be overloaded for safety reasons.
“The skipper also needs to ensure that he or she is maintaining a proper lookout at all times, and that this is not affected by the way the vessel is loaded,” Mr Green said.