Marine Safety Victoria is encouraging all of Victoria’s fishing public to not only enjoy the season but to stay safe on the water.
Boating Safety is no accident
'The snapper season is an exciting time of the year for all fishermen - there is really nothing quite like the thrill of the catch. However, it is also the time accidents can happen and we are urging all boaters to make sure they keep a proper look out and remain visible when on the water,' says Brian Riches, Director of Marine Safety Victoria.
'Research statistics show that there has been a significant increase in vessel collisions during the snapper season and many of them could have been avoided by following a few simple tips.'
'As a skipper you should keep a proper lookout at all times, make sure you brief your crew or passengers about the need to watch out for other vessels and have your navigation lights on during any time of restricted visibility.'
'Whilst we all know that it is essential to ensure the appropriate navigation lights are on at night, visibility can be at its most restricted during dusk and dawn, as well as during periods of poor weather, so make sure you react to the conditions.'
'The issue of lights may seem simple. However, skippers must ensure they have the right lights on at the right times. Lights send out specific messages to other boaters, and if they are not used properly, can cause accidents,' says Mr Riches.
'We hope all new and experienced fishermen have a great time chasing that elusive snapper. However, please remember to stay safe as no fish is worth your life.'
Lights - a few simple hints:
Display the correct combination of lights (port and starboard and all round white
light) whilst underway;
Display an all round white light (360° arc) whilst at anchor;
Understand lights displayed by all other vessels, particularly larger commercial
Have your lights on during times of ‘restricted’ visibility.
For further information please visit www.marinesafety.vic.gov.au or call 1800 223 022.