Queensland Jet ski users and boaties hitting the water are being reminded about new safety rules which came into effect 1 January.
Jet skiers will now have to wear PFDs
Marine Infrastructure Minister Craig Wallace said the changes had been put in place to better protect all water users and reduce the risk of accidents.
'From today, people operating jet skis at more than 10 knots have to keep a 30-metre distance from other moving vessels,' Mr Wallace said. 'The 30-metre distance rule will mean jet ski users and everyone around them have enough space to enjoy our waterways safely.'
Jet ski users will also need to carry a registered EPIRB when they’re more than two nautical miles outside partially smooth waters. Handheld flares and a ‘V’ sheet, used to attract attention to a vessel in distress have now become standard equipment when operating outside designated smooth water.
'Jet skis are now a lot more powerful than they used to be and are capable of travelling faster and further distances, so it makes sense that enhanced safety measures are put in place,' Mr Wallace said.
Other changes introduced from the New Year will affect boaties.
'Three more locations have been identified as designated coastal bars, requiring all passengers in an open boat under 4.8 metres to wear a lifejacket when crossing,' he said. 'The mouths of the Mooloolah River and Round Hill Creek and the Gold Coast Seaway entrance have been included in those locations that will now require life jackets.
'We are also introducing improved night and electronic navigation training for all new licence holders so they’re better prepared for the responsibility of operating a boat.'
Under the new rules, instructors providing licence courses for boaties through the BoatSafe program will offer additional training covering all aspects of safe navigation.
More at www.btaq.org.au