We are in the peak of the summer boating season and there have been numerous incidents, accidents and tragedies on the water. Authorities have ramped up their messaging around boating safety and on water safety and all boat owners should take heed and ensure their boat and themselves are prepared with the right knowledge and equipment.
There are many newish boat owners out on the water following the surge in boat sales over the last few years. While a boating licence is essential to being permitted to operate a boat, there is a lot of knowledge that is often only acquired through experience, through doing the necessary homework and in equipping the boat with the required safety equipment. Boating safety should be paramount to all boat owners every time they head out and is something that all skippers, their crews and their guests should be fully aware of.
Boating safety can start from the time of purchase of the boat by speaking with Jade Boat Loans about including the cost of safety gear in the boat loan. This can prevent the ’I’ll get that later’ attitude and overlooking key safety equipment which may be of vital assistance in the event of an incident.
Accidents Spark Police Cautions
NSW Water Police issued water safety cautions after numerous accident’s on the state’s waterways. Two teenagers sadly lost their lives as the result of tow-boating accident in the north-west of the state when the boat apparently had a collision with a tree.
Another teenager also died on a lake in country Victoria, at Yarrawonga, after he and another were from thrown from their tinnie when hit by a wave.
In WA, a couple taking a jet ski out off a Perth beach, for the first time after purchase caused a major search and rescue operation when they failed to return to shore. The jet ski apparently ran out of fuel and the current dragged the vessel and occupants out to sea. Fortunately they were found and safely returned.
Tidal conditions in NSW, especially in Pittwater, left a number of moored boats stranded on the muddy, sandy bed. Highlighting the importance of being aware of checking tide charts when dropping anchor. Check with the Bureau of Meteorology and have the app easily accessible on your mobile device.
Continuing flood conditions increase the risks for boaters in rivers and lakes. Hazards can lurk under the surface and many other risks can present when operating a boat in flood-affected waters. As the Murray River areas are currently being impacted by flood, boaters in SA and Victoria need to stay vigilant. Flood events have also been reported in WA and western NSW.
The Royal Life Saving Association advised that small boats – tinnies, PWCs, sailboats and inflatables, record the most common fatalities. Drowning deaths occur most often in the ocean, followed by riverine waters and then beaches.
The Association said not wearing a lifejacket was the reason for many of these deaths from drowning with alcohol also a contributor. They provide a list of risk factors for boaters to be aware of, including:-
- Unpreparedness for changing conditions.
- Excess speed.
- Unseaworthy vessel.
- Not wearing a lifejacket or the jacket not properly fitted.
- Not maintaining equipment.
- Inexperience with the equipment.
- Risky behaviours.
- Alcohol and drugs.
Including Boating Safety Equipment in Boat Loan
As we said at the outset, boating safety can start even before the boat purchase has been made. In fact, safety can be one of the buying considerations. The boat selection should include choosing a boat which suits the operating expertise and experience of the boat owner/skipper. That can relate to the power of the engine if purchasing a power boat or the overall size of any type of vessel.
The choice of waterways and/or water conditions can also have safety considerations with the purchase. Ensuring the boat selected does suit where the owner is planning to boat. If the intention is to head offshore for fishing trips, ensure the boat is rated for such conditions. If planning to stay overnight or for extended periods, ensure the boat is designed for that purpose.
The number of people intending to take on the boat is also important for safety reasons. Boats are rated for a certain number of occupants – for safety! Failure to comply with the rating can result in infringement notices and fines but can also result in incidents of the boat upturning or sinking.
Having all the required safety equipment is important to meet regulations but also for sensible, safe boating. Lifejackets are compulsory and the type of jackets required and when they must be worn varies according to the type of boat and the waterway. Check with the state marine authority for specifics.
But in addition to lifejackets there are items such as good quality communications devices, beacons and flares and other equipment to consider. When purchasing say a trailer boat from a boat dealership, the dealer may also sell many of these items. By ordering them at the same time as the boat may not only be a sensible decision but also financial astute.
When extra items such as boating safety equipment is purchased along with the boat, your Jade consultant may be able to include the cost in the Secured Boat Loan. This can save the time of having to spend time purchasing the boating safety requirements at another time and save the costs of paying for them separately to the boat.
To work out how much the addition of safety equipment to the boat loan may work out in boat loan repayments, use our Quick Boat Finance Calculator. There’s still a lot of great summer boating weather ahead and if you plan to purchase a new boat to make the most of it, ensure all the boating safety measures are considered and adhered to.
Contact Jade Boat Loans on 1300 000 003 to discuss including boating safety equipment in the boat finance.
DISCLAIMER: THE INFORMATION AND SPECIFIC DETAILS CONTAINED IN THE CONTENT OF THIS ARTICLE HAVE BEEN PREPARED AND ARE PRESENTED PURELY AS GENERAL INFORMATION AND NOT INTENDED AS THE ONLY SOURCE OF FINANCIAL ADVICE FOR BOAT BUYERS AND LOAN BORROWERS. FOR THOSE THAT CONSIDER THEY REQUIRE SPECIFIC ADVICE, THEY SHOULD CONSULT WITH A FINANCIAL ADVISOR. LIABILITY IS NOT ACCEPTED IN REGARD TO ERRORS AND MISPRESENTED DATA AND DETAILS HEREIN.