Marine Rescue NSW is the official volunteer marine rescue service in NSW. They provide continuous radio coverage along the coast and have units at Terrey Hills, Middle Harbour, Port Jackson and Broken Bay. They also have a log on and log off service for boats going offshore.
If in need of assistance, Marine Rescue can be contacted on VHF channel 16 (distress and calling channel), 27 MHz radio channel 88 or by telephone on 9450 2468. In an emergency, call 000.
All the information needed for safe boating is in the Roads and Maritime Services Boating Handbook. This is available from their website at www.maritime.nsw.gov.au. The handbook provides information on equipment that must be carried on board, the NSW lifejacket laws and the requirements for NSW boat licences.
Here are some good tips to follow when planning a boating trip:
- Check your boat is in good condition and is seaworthy
- Inspect the bilges. If there is more bilge water than usual, find and rectify the fault
- Have an appropriate anchor and chain on board and are rigged ready to use
- Check the weather before going out. A good site is Marine & Ocean on the BOM website www.bom.gov.au
- Check all the required safety equipment is on board, that it is in good condition and the crew know where it is located on the boat. Have a life jacket for each person on board. Children require suitably sized life-jackets.Know when to wear a lifejacket
- If going offshore, make sure your marine radio is working and that you know how to use it in an emergency
- Make sure there is sufficient fuel and fresh water for the planned trip
- Do not drink and drive. The legal limit on the water is 0.05% as on the roads
- Tell someone where you are going and when you are expected home
- Don’t overload your boat