Skippers urged to log all offshore boat trips

Skippers urged to log all offshore trips

NSW Maritime is urging skippers heading offshore to log their trip before setting out following a dramatic rescue tonight.

This follows the rescue of three people after their 7.5 metre runabout sank off Merimbula.

NSW Maritime General Manager Recreational Boating Brett Moore said skippers travelling away from sheltered waters should ensure they contact their local coastal radio base – advising the trip plan and estimated time of return – before setting out.

“A radio check also should be carried out,” Mr Moore said.
A runabout with three men on board was found shortly before dark in a search and rescue operation involving aircraft and vessels.

The men had contacted the Royal Volunteer Coastal Patrol advising they were taking on water but heading back to Merimbula, and then did not return and could not be contacted.

NSW Water Police recovered the men who did the right thing put on their lifejackets and stayed with their upturned craft aiding rescue efforts.  
“These three men were lucky,” Mr Moore said.

“But this incident highlights the importance of letting people know where you are going, and checking your radio communication equipment is working properly.
“Wearing your lifejacket in declining weather conditions saves lives” Mr Moore said.