Flood threat to water safety this Easter
After weeks of wild and unpredictable weather, boaters, rock fishers, swimmers and surfers are being urged to take extra care around the State’s waterways this Easter long weekend.
Minister for Emergency Services and Resilience and Minister for Flood Recovery Steph Cooke said the flooding across NSW has left hidden dangers in the State’s waterways.
“The impact of the flooding and heavy rain has reached far and wide, with sunken debris and displaced navigational aids increasing the risks to those enjoying our waterways this Easter long weekend,” Ms Cooke said.
“As we’ve seen in recent weeks, the weather can change quickly with very little warning. Please check the forecast and listen to the advice of authorities, including Marine Rescue, Surf Life Saving and Maritime NSW so you can safely enjoy the public holidays.”
Member for Cronulla Mark Speakman said boaters can take simple precautions in and around the water to keep themselves and their family and friends safe.
“Before heading out boat owners should check their vessel to make sure its engine has been serviced and the battery is in good condition,” Mr Speakman said.
“Easter is a wonderful time to get out on our beautiful waterways but being prepared could be the difference between having a good time and tragedy.”
Marine Rescue NSW Commissioner Stacey Tannos said more than half of all calls for help received by Marine Rescue volunteers are due to engine, battery or fuel issues.
“Make sure you are carrying all of the required safety equipment, including a VHF marine radio, lifejackets, V-sheet, flares and EPIRB, and know how to use them. Boaters should also log their trip with Marine Rescue NSW via VHF Channel 16 or on the Marine Rescue app, to help us find them if something doesn’t go according to plan,” Commissioner Tannos said.
Surf Life Saving NSW President George Shales said the Easter period is historically one of the most dangerous along our coastline and urged everyone to head to a patrolled beach and swim between the flags.
“Last Easter our volunteer surf lifesavers conducted more than 100 rescues and we sadly saw multiple fatalities. We are expecting large numbers to head to the beach so please play it safe and listen to advice from lifesavers and lifeguards,” Mr Shales said.