Hard Line On Life Jackets

Nov 30, 2010

As the summer season gears up, the Queenstown Lakes District harbour master is taking a tough line on life jackets.

The rule in the Queenstown Lakes District, on any waterway, is that boats must carry a life jacket for every person on board and that all children 10-years or less must have their lifejacket fastened. On any vessel six metres long or less, life jackets must be worn at all times.

“Any person, at any time on the water, should be wearing a life jacket. It’s a tough fact, hard learned in this district but life jackets save lives,’ Mr Black said.

Just a few weeks into summer and the harbour master and deputy harbour master have already issued a number of instant fines.

“The time to take a softer, more educational role is over. If you get on the water you should know the rules,” Mr Black said.

So far six people had received an instant fine for failing to carry life jackets.

“That’s an instant fine of $300 per person,” Mr Black said.

Also disappointing was the issuing of an instant fine of $500 to a water ski boat for failing to tow with an observer.

“The driver was fined $500 and the skier $300. No observer is an accident waiting to happen,” Mr Black said.

Another local copped a fine for exceeding the 5 knot limit on the Lochy River.

“All rivers on the west side of Lake Wakatipu, the Lochy, the Von and the Greenstone Rivers have always had the 5 knot limit in place,” Mr Black said.

He looked forward to a long, hot and safe summer.

Rules for safety on the water were available on the Council website www.qldc.govt.nz or at Council offices.

For further information please contact Marty Black 0274 345 289

By: Andrea Bunting