NSW Maritime has granted an exclusive use aquatic licence for the safe staging of a swimming event on Wollongong Harbour this weekend.
NSW Maritime Acting Regional Manager South Coast Wayne Langshaw said, between 7am and 11am on Saturday and between 8am and 1pm on Sunday, boaters should avoid a roughly rectangular area of Wollongong Harbour, which will be marked by buoys:
· On the shoreline adjacent to the intersection of Harbour Street and Cliff Road; and
· At the centre of the entrance into the Wollongong Harbour on the western side of the remnants of the stone structure adjacent to the Wollongong Slipway.
'This area will be exclusively for the safe staging of the 2011 Wollongong Ocean Swim, Nipper Enduro and Aquathon,' Mr Langshaw said.
'Competitors will be racing on a course outside these rounding marks. Accordingly, vessel operators should be aware that the area extends outside the rounding marks in a perimeter 20 metres wide, to allow for the competitors to race around the course.'
Mr Langshaw said navigation into and out of Wollongong Harbour will be subject to interruptions during this period to allow a safe passage for competitors.
'For safety reasons, skippers should avoid these areas as they will be restricted for the event and patrolled by control vessels,' he said.
Mr Langshaw said unauthorised vessels would not be permitted to enter the exclusive use area unless authorised by event organisers, a NSW Maritime Boating Safety Officer or a Police Officer.
For more information on boating safety go to www.maritime.nsw.gov.au