NSW Maritime Chief Executive Steve Dunn today issued a warning to boaters to take extra care on South Coast waterways in the aftermath of heavy rain.
by Neil Patchett
Mr Dunn said rains in the Illawarra Region had compromised the system of navigation aids from the Illawarra Region south to the Bega Valley Shire.
'The heavy rains will have forced a number of navigation marker buoys off-station,' he explained.
'There is potential for navigation markers to be missing or dislodged and that means hazards may be unmarked.
'Skippers are advised to take extra care when navigating in this area whilst NSW Maritime Boating Safety Officers carry out inspections.'
NSW Maritime manages the system of safe navigation markers across the State including thousands of markers and buoys, and 13 lighthouses along the coast.
Mr Dunn said skippers should wait for flood waters to subside and only resume boating once it is safe to do so.
'All skippers are responsible for the safety of their boat and the people on board, so keep a proper lookout and keep to a speed that is safe for the conditions,' he said.
Navigation aids are the traffic safety signage for our waterways, any reports of damaged, misplaced or missing markers should be phoned through to NSW Maritime by calling 131 256 as quickly as possible.
Once all navigation marks have been checked, NSW Maritime will issue an all clear. www.maritime.nsw.gov.au
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7:00 AM Wed 23 Mar 2011 GMT