Safety first for Australia's biggest waterski race

Safety first for Australia's biggest waterski race

4 February 2014

The Nationals John Williams, Member for Murray-Darling said today that Boaters and spectators are being urged to put safety first during the Southern 80 water ski race on the Murray River this weekend.

“Roads and Maritime Services have granted an exclusive use aquatic licence for the safe staging of the race which covers 80 kilometres from Torrumbarry to Echuca.

“Safety will be the first priority as the race involves power vessels and skiers travelling at high speed. Boaters are reminded this is an exclusive use event meaning no vessels other than those competing are to be on the course,” John Williams said.

“Under no circumstances should anyone attempt to swim across the river as this is dangerous and the race will be stopped.

“When the river is opened to the public, boaters are reminded of their obligation to keep to the right, travel at a safe speed and keep a proper lookout.”

“Unfortunately during last year’s event there were a number of incidents involving boaters and spectators,” John Williams said.

Twelve Roads and Maritime Boating Safety Officers, two Boating Education Officers and six support staff will attend the Southern 80 to provide boater education and coordinate the on water traffic management.

Roads and Maritime Boating Safety Officers will be coordinating joint patrols with NSW Police for random breath testing to take place across the weekend.

Skippers should remember the blood alcohol limit on the water is the same as on the road – 0.05.

For safety reasons, occupants of moored vessels in the race area are urged to vacate their vessels during the event. Houseboats are required to be moored parallel to the river bank in a safe location.”

Exclusive use areas will apply on both days:

Saturday 6am to midday from Torrumbarry Weir to the 1712 kilometre river marker at Victoria Park at Echuca, then Midday to 7pm from the 1690 kilometre river marker at Perricoota Marina, Goldsborough Road at Moama to the 1712 kilometre river marker at Victoria Park, Echuca.

Sunday 6am to 7pm from the Torrumbarry Weir to the 1712 kilometre marker at Victoria Park, Echuca.

For more information on boating safety go to: www.rms.nsw.gov.au/maritime

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