01 Nov 2012
Eight expiation notices were issued to vessels anchored in the Port River shipping channel or impeding the channel in the last week of October 2012.
DPTI Director Safety and Regulation Trent Rusby has warned all recreational boaters to steer clear of shipping channels and zones.
“These eight were not the only small vessels in the area and this is an issue that has been repeatedly raised,” he said.
“It’s a matter of luck that we haven’t seen a disaster in our shipping channels with smaller craft and recreational boats literally anchored in the way like sitting ducks.
“Big ships don’t have brakes. It’s not a simple process for a ship to stop or turn around if there are smaller boats in it’s way. It’s a shame that we have to repeatedly issue reminders for such a fundamental issue – steer clear of shipping channels and shipping zones,” he said.
Operators of boats anchored or impeding shipping channels face a $375 expiation fee, but the real cost of this behaviour could be much, much higher.
“Given the time needed to change course it’s impossible for a big ship to steer around small stationary vessels,” Mr Rusby said.
“The drag caused by a large vessel can also hamper the escape of smaller boats that have left it too late to move, seconds, even minutes is not an option.
In addition to anchoring in the channel last weekend, one vessel was unregistered, while another was operated by an unlicensed individual.
Attached is an image taken last weekend by DPTI Marine Safety officers.
For more information visit the boating near commercial vessels page of sa.gov.au