New South Wales Marine Rescue responded to 50 calls at the weekend.
New South Wales Marine Rescue responded to 50 calls at the weekend. John Gass /TWE161112exercise

Busy start to season for Marine Rescue

THE summer boating season got off to a hazardous start as Marine Rescue volunteers along the New South Wales coastline responded to 50 calls at the weekend.

MRNSW Northern Rivers regional controller Stephen Reading said two vessels had overturned in separate incidents off Tweed Heads on Sunday.

In the first incident, one of the two people on board was picked up by a jet-ski operator and taken to shore.

The other had been rescued by another vessel and was transferred to Marine Rescue vessel Point Danger 30 and taken to a waiting ambulance for transport to hospital.

Three people from the second vessel were rescued. One had minor injuries that needed medical attention.

The NSW volunteers fielded 23 calls for assistance on Saturday and 27 more by 5pm Sunday.

Deputy Commissioner Dean Storey said that with the exception of the Tweed Heads incidents, reports indicated that all problems were mechanical, electrical or fuel-related.

"The fine weather for the official start of the boating season has seen large numbers of vessels take to the water with a high proportion of breakdowns caused by mechanical problems," he said.

"All boaters should ensure their vessels are ready for the boating season, especially those that might not have been used since last summer.

"In fine weather with calm seas, skippers can radio for help. The worst result of the breakdown can be simply an interrupted day. In poor conditions, a breakdown can be life-threatening.

"Make sure everyone on board is wearing a lifejacket and log on with your local MRNSW volunteers by your marine radio or the free MarineRescue app."



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