Deaths prompt warning from rescuers

Chloe FraserSound Telegraph
Rockingham Volunteer Sea Rescue Group public relations officer Craig Bryce.
Camera IconRockingham Volunteer Sea Rescue Group public relations officer Craig Bryce. Credit: Sound Telegraph

In the wake of several recent tragedies along WA’s coast Rockingham Volunteer Sea Rescue Group is desperately appealing to all boaters and water-users to “seriously rethink their actions” before and while they are on the water.

RVSRG officer Craig Bryce said volunteers had been shaken by recent search efforts with three deaths in just four weeks.

“We are a boating State — most of us have been doing it our whole lives,” he said. “But that doesn’t mean we can forget about safety while doing it.

“One accident out on the ocean and it could well end your life or the life of someone you love.”

He urged skippers to have the appropriate safety gear aboard and know how to use it, to always wear a life jacket and to ensure the weather and sea conditions were appropriate.

“We really need to start thinking seriously about safety on the water,” he said.

“I’ve seen it from the other side . . . when an accident at sea happens we search for hours, often day after day, hoping for the best possible outcome, but sometimes it’s only to give closure to the loved ones you have left behind.”

Mr Bryce also reminded boaters about the importance of lifejackets and logging on and off via radio or phone before heading out on the water.

“So often people think ‘oh it’s not going to happen to me’ or we hear ‘I didn’t ask for help because I’m embarrassed’ . . . there is nothing embarrassing about wanting to keep your loved ones safe,” he said.

“If you are unsure or new to boating come and knock on our door and ask questions — we are here to help.”

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