The 2013 BIA Melbourne Boat Show will offer a free Boat Handling Course to everybody who buys a boat at the show.
It is the ninth year the show has offered the free course since the Boating Industry Association of Victoria (BIA) introduced it in 2005.
BIA general manager, Steven Gill said more than 600 boat buyers had taken the course to enhance the safety and enjoyment of their boating.
'Our boat handling course has been a real winner with buyers of every type of boat, from a tinnie to a luxury cruiser,' he said.
'In a minimum three-hour course, they cover maintenance and reversing of boat trailers, safe and efficient launching and retrieval, close quarter manoeuvres and coming alongside.
'They will also learn use of fenders and lines, safety gear, weather and sea state, and after-use care of a vessel – everything they need to know to make the most of their new boat.
'We actively encourage couples to take the course together, and it’s equally popular with buyers of both big and small boats.'
Mr Gill said the course was part of a broad focus on safety on the water, including navigation simulators and the latest advice from Transport Safety Victoria (TSV).
'TSV will offer expert advice and information about every aspect of safe boating, including fire safety, anchoring, crossings bars and safety equipment,' he said.
'Show patrons can also win an EPIRB every day of the show by joining TSV’s mailing list – just fill in the form at the TSV stand, which is right next to Parks Victoria.'
The 53rd Annual BIA Melbourne Boat Show runs from Friday 14 June to Monday 17 June at the Melbourne Exhibition Centre. It is open from 10am each day, until 9pm on Friday, 8pm on Saturday and 7pm on Sunday and Monday.
More at www.melbourneboatshow.com.au