Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey has launched the State Government’s Maritime Safety Plan to minimise trauma and promote safety on NSW waterways.
Mrs Pavey said the plan aimed to reduce the rate of fatalities and serious injuries on NSW waterways by 30 per cent by the end of 2021, which would result in four lives saved and 16 serious injuries prevented each year.
“In NSW, we have some of the best waterways in Australia and each year more than two million people head out on the water on boats and the like to enjoy the sun, catch a few fish or to spend time with family and friends,” Mrs Pavey said.
“Boating is not without its risks and one life lost, is one too many. That’s why the NSW Government is reducing trauma on our waterways through initiatives like this.”
Over the past five years, the state Government has invested more than $500 million in delivering services and infrastructure to the NSW maritime community.
“This includes raising the lifejacket wear rate from nine per cent 10 years ago, to 45 per cent,” she said.
Mrs Pavey said last financial year we recorded the lowest number of fatalities in at least 40 years, with only four casualties.
“While we have made significant progress in reducing drowning fatalities on boats, increased effort is needed to respond to non-drowning fatalities – caused by factors such as speed, alcohol, keeping a proper lookout and judgement.
“The State Government has worked closely with stakeholders, NSW Police and Marine Rescue NSW as well as industry to develop this plan and it is endorsed by our Maritime Advisory Council,” Mrs Pavey said.
The plan is the first strategic plan developed since the 2012 Maritime Policy Agenda and sets the strategic direction for Transport for NSW for the next five years.
The Maritime Safety Plan 2017-21 can be viewed at; https://future.transport.nsw.gov.au/react-feedback/supporting-plans/maritime-safety-plan/