Bay of Plenty Regional Council’s Harbourmaster team will be trialing a new tool to improve safety on the water this summer – a speed radar gun will be introduced to help crackdown on jetskiers breaking the boating rules.
Regional Harbourmaster Jon Jon Peters says over the last couple of years warnings and education has been the approach instead of issuing fines, but a large number of jetskiers are now flouting the rules and that needed to change.
This summer a $200 fine will be handed out to those that are ignoring or breaking the rules – a $200 fine will also apply to those jetskis that aren’t registered. There will be a 14-day grace period from the day of a registration breach before a fine will be issued.
Mr Peters says jetski use in the Bay of Plenty is seeing a massive growth with just over 2,000 craft registered across the region.
“They are affordable and relatively simple to use so they’re attractive to a wider variety of people,” Mr Peters says.
“However a lot of people don’t realise that they have the same rules as boats.”
Jetskis must keep to 5 knots within 200 metres of the shore, a structure or dive flag. The 5 knot rule also applies within 50 metres of another boat, raft or person in the water.
The owner of the jetski is responsible for making sure that any person in charge of their jetski is competent and aware of the local regulations.
Mr Peters is also urging jetski owners to make sure the registration of craft is changed when jetskis are sold.
“If you haven’t changed the registration the previous owner will be liable for any fine handed out,” Mr Peters says.
To register a jetski please go to boprc.govt.nz/register-your-jetski