Stay safe on the water this summer

Make the most of your time on the water this summer. Prep and check your vessel now and brush up on your responsibilities for keeping yourself and others safe. 

Safer Boating Week, which runs from October 18-25 this year, is the ideal time to make sure you’re fully prepared for when waterways are at their busiest.

Prep, check and know

Our navigation safety officer Gordon McKay says that being safe is the key to enjoying Canterbury’s waterways over summer.

“Whether you’re jet skiing, kayaking, sailing or paddle boarding, even the most experienced boaties need to make sure they know their responsibilities out on the water, including staying up-to-date with local bylaws,” says Gordon.

"Before even heading to the ramp, make sure your gear is properly maintained and fit for purpose, and you have all the right safety equipment you need to operate your craft." 

Read the Navigation Safety Bylaw 2016 and Controls (PDF File, 6.05MB).

Boating Safety Code

Gordon says boaties should also follow the key messages from the Boating Safety Code.

“The key messages in the Boating Safety Code are based on common factors contributing to deaths in recreational boating. Everyone should always wear a lifejacket, take two waterproof forms of communication, check the forecast, and avoid alcohol."

Bar crossings

Boaties are also being reminded to be extremely cautious when crossing any bar or river entrance.

“It’s vital boaties are familiar with the national code of practice for bar crossings before attempting it themselves.

"Maritime New Zealand and Coastguard New Zealand both have extensive information, including videos, about how to cross the bar on their websites. Even if you’ve done it before, Safer Boating Week is a good time to brush up on your skills. Not crossing the bar correctly can be fatal,” Gordon says.