Cam­paign pushes for life jacket checks

Mercury (Hobart) - - NEWS -

MORE peo­ple will die at sea without an in­crease in the num­ber of life jackets be­ing ser­viced, Tas­ma­nia’s mar­itime safety body says.

The warn­ing came as it launched its new sum­mer safety cam­paign yes­ter­day.

Its last an­nual report said of an es­ti­mated 87,000 jackets only about 2000 were be­ing ser­viced.

Marine and Safety Tas­ma­nia CEO Lia Mor­ris said two re­cent coro­ner’s re­ports demon­strated the need to con­tinue to fo­cus on the im­por­tance of safety equip­ment and life jacket wear­ing and readi­ness.

“Trag­i­cally, these fa­tal­i­ties high­light the im­por­tance of wear­ing a life jacket, en­sur­ing the in­flat­able life jacket is ser­viced and un­der­stand­ing how it works,” Ms Mor­ris said.

She said MAST has data to show that some 94 per cent of Tas­ma­ni­ans wear their life jackets but many are out of ser­vice.

This new safety mes­sage is their se­cond ma­jor boat­ing cam­paign and again fea­tures Nick Duigan and An­drew Hart from TV se­ries Hook, Line and Sinker.

In the new ads, An­drew Hart is shown in the wa­ter with a prop­erly in­flated life jacket and again with a life jacket that did not work.

“I was only in the wa­ter for a few min­utes for both shots – my breath was lit­er­ally taken away both times,” Hart said.

“But at least with the life jacket prop­erly in­flated I could stay afloat.”

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