Centre for Maritime Safety


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National Safe Boating Week

Boaters across NSW are being reminded of ways to stay safe during the inaugural National Safe Boating Week which kicks off on Saturday 26 September and runs until Friday 2 October.

National Safe Boating Week is a collaborative initiative developed by maritime agencies across Australia, including Transport for NSW, the Boating Industry Association and volunteer marine rescue services.

Our data shows that not wearing a lifejacket and not making considered judgments, particularly about weather conditions, are some of the top reasons people get into trouble when out on the water. The week aims to highlight the benefits of taking proactive steps to manage boating risks, including how always wearing a lifejacket and regularly checking weather forecasts could save your life.

Other themes on days during National Safe Boating Week include ‘Know It’ (vessel suitability), ‘Pack It’ (safety equipment), ‘Plan It’ (trip planning and emergency contact) and ‘Learn It’ (boating rules).

The week culminates with ‘Wear a Lifejacket to Work Day’ on Friday 2 October, encouraging all boaters to wear their most essential piece of safety equipment during work hours. Wearing a lifejacket never ruined a day out on the water – or a day at work! On this day, an inflatable lifejacket self-service clinic will be hosted by a team of our Boating Education Officers. Click here to register to attend the clinic.

To align with the theme of 'Check It' (safety equipment), Boating Safety Officers are kick-starting the 30 Second Challenge initiative, where skippers are challenged to locate their safety equipment in 30 seconds. Being able to access and activate safety equipment quickly could save your life in an emergency.

Despite a long-term downward trend in boating fatalities, 25 lives were lost in boating-related incidents in NSW during 2019-20. This is in contrast to the 11 fatalities recorded during the previous financial year.

The NSW Government continues to work Towards Zero fatalities and serious injuries on our waterways by 2056. For more information about National Safe Boating Week, click here.