Boat­ies ad­vised to log on for safety

Cockburn Gazette - - NEWS - Tyler Brown and Jes­sica Nico

BOAT­IES are risk­ing their lives when they go out on the wa­ter with­out log­ging on with a vol­un­teer sea res­cue group.

When log­ging on boat­ies ra­dio in their call sign, reg­is­tra­tion, num­ber of peo­ple on board, des­ti­na­tion and the time they are ex­pected to re­turn.

If af­ter 15 min­utes of that re­turn time a boat has not ra­dioed to log off, the res­cue group can ini­ti­ate its pro­ce­dures to start a search.

Fre­man­tle Sea Res­cue’s Mark Zu­vela said as the busiest res­cue group in Aus­tralia it re­ceived more than 30,000 calls every year, but there were still boat­ies who ei­ther re­fused or ne­glected to take the sim­ple, safe pre­cau­tion of log­ging on with their group.

“The waters off Perth can get very dan­ger­ous, so by log­ging on with your lo­cal sea res­cue group it means if you run into trou­ble or don’t log off with us on your re­turn we can be­gin the steps to start look­ing for you,” he said.

“Every year boat­ies make the same mis­take of go­ing out with­out let­ting any­one know and if they go miss­ing we have a much harder time try­ing to find them.

“We can be reached 24 hours a day on VHF and 27Mhz chan­nels and by phone and our new state-of-the-art ra­dio over IP (ROIP) sys­tem at our Can­ton­ment Hill ma­rine op­er­a­tions build­ing means we can eas­ily re­spond any time of the day all-year round.”

Mr Zu­vela said it was not just boat users who could use the ser­vice.

“We en­cour­age not just boat­ies but all wa­ter users, such as kayak­ers, who are head­ing off­shore to not only log in with us but also reg­is­ter your EPIRBs and join up with us as FSR Af­fil­i­ate mem­bers,” he said.

“When you join FSR you pay an an­nual mem­ber­ship, you be­come a mem­ber of our data­base which gives us your boat de­tails, your car and trailer de­tails, con­tact in­for­ma­tion and next of kin in­for­ma­tion.”

Pic­ture: Martin Ken­nealey d473930

Fre­man­tle Sea Res­cue’s Josh Gam­mon-Car­son.

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