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News - 02/06/20

Boat safety and safe navigation on return to boating

As boat users enjoy a return to the water, Cowes Harbour Commission would like to emphasise the importance of carrying out all the essential checks on your vessel after several months or more of no boating. Additionally, boat users are advised to always check the prevailing weather conditions before setting off, and to carefully consider the capabilities of any crew onboard.

The HM Coastguard has reported that they attended 447 incidents over the last weekend in May, making it the busiest of 2020 to date. Sunday saw a 168% increase on the May 2019 average with 241 incidents making it the busiest day of the year so far and Saturday was the second busiest day of the year with 206 incidents. Over the weekend the search and rescue helicopters were involved in 50 incidents and lifeboats were involved in 202 call outs.

HM Coastguard stated: “Very high numbers of people took to the beaches, coast and sea this weekend which led to a huge increase in the number of incidents.

“Boating, swimming and other sea-based activities are now allowed again across the UK, as is spending time on the beach. However, now more than ever, people need to respect the sea and the coast to ensure the safety of themselves and their families.

“Regardless of how well you know the coast, or how experienced you are in your chosen sport, the sea can still catch you out.

“In addition, the Government guidelines around social distancing should continue to be observed by everyone in the UK.”

If you get into trouble at sea or on the coast call 999 and ask for the Coastguard and they will come to your aid. However, Coronavirus has not gone away and we all need to follow the rules.

Remember your choices might put people, including yourself and frontline responders, at risk. Take extra care in these extraordinary times.