Roads and Maritime Services has issued an alert to boaters after a Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) warning about dangerous surf conditions today and tomorrow along the Byron, Coffs, Macquarie, Hunter, Sydney, Illawarra, Batemans and Eden Coast. Boat skippers should consider changing or delaying their voyage before considering crossing a coastal bar or heading offshore. Rock fishers should avoid coastal rock platforms exposed to the ocean and seek a safe location sheltered from the surf.
Strong winds can also cause damage to vessels on moorings which have been poorly maintained. Every skipper is responsible for the safety of their vessel and all on board. Roads and Maritime advises skippers to: Check the official weather forecast before and during boating and ‘if in doubt, don’t go out’ Ensure the boat and its equipment is suitable for the conditions Log on/ off with a Marine Rescue NSW marine radio base via VHF Radio or Marine Rescue APP for every trip offshore and consider a safety management plan Wear a lifejacket. For more information: Offshore boating safety: www.maritime.nsw.gov.au/campaigns/offshore.html Lifejackets: www.lifejacketwearit.com.au Live vision of bar crossings: www.maritime.nsw.gov.au/webcams/web-cam.html Official forecast: www.bom.gov.au/nsw BoM maritime-specific advice: www.bom.gov.au/marine/about/four-vital-checks.shtml Boating safety images: www.flickr.com/photos/nswmaritime/