Marine Rescue Lake Macquarie and Marine Rescue Swansea NSW are joining forces to make their service to the boating public even better.
by Martine Tylee
Last year, Royal Volunteer Coastal Patrol, Australian Volunteer Coast Guard and the Volunteer Rescue Association joined to form one organisation: Marine Rescue NSW. Although operations as Marine Rescue NSW began on 1 January 2010, the two local bases – the former Australian Volunteer Coast Guard base at Swansea Heads and the former Royal Volunteer Coastal Patrol base at Pelican – have been operating as two separate units until the logistics of joining the two units were worked out.
The new, single, unit will be called Marine Rescue Lake Macquarie and it will have its radio base on Swansea Heads and its boat base at Pelican.
The combined unit will be able to provide a better service to the public, says Pelican base Unit Commander Jim Wright. 'We now have enough volunteers to have a boat crew on stand-by at the base during the entire school holidays for the first time. This will dramatically reduce our response time in this busy period.' 'We always had a weekend crew on duty but now we can have a crew at the base during the week as well, which is a fantastic service for the local boating community,' Wright adds.
'Despite the changes, the important things will stay the same: we will still work with the same dedication and professionalism to protect life at sea and on the lake,' Swansea Heads base Unit Commander John Hatton said. 'The amalgamation between the units will significantly broaden our capabilities and is a critical step forward to a sustainable marine volunteer service in the region,' according to Hatton.
Both organisations thank the community for all their support over the years and hope the community will continue to support the single unit now that they have joined forces.
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4:55 AM Thu 6 Jan 2011 GMT
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