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Jetskiers remined of their responsibilities after man dies

02 Mar 2012

Jetskiers are reminded to be extremely vigilant when riding and make sure they are familiar with rules regarding speeds around swimmers.

On Friday 24 February, Victoria Police reported a 51-year-old man died following a marine incident at Port Melbourne Beach, Victoria.

Investigators believe that the man was swimming in the water around Lagoon Pier at 5.50pm Friday evening.

Witnesses have told police that two men riding on a jet ski collided with the swimmer.

Emergency services were called to the scene and the South Melbourne man was taken to hospital, where he died this morning from severe head injuries.

The driver of the jet-ski, a 21-year-old, has been assisting police and was released pending further enquires.

In South Australia careless operation of a jet ski carries a maximum penalty of 12 months imprisonment or a $2500 fine while for dangerous operation the maximum penalty is two years jail.

Personal watercraft operators are reminded of the following important rules and regulations:

- 7.4 kph (4-knot) speed limits apply within 50 metres of swimmers or a person in or on a kayak, canoe or similar un-powered craft
- any person operating a personal watercraft must be at least 16 years of age and have a boat operator’s licence
- all operators and passengers must wear a correctly fitting personal flotation device (PFD)
- do not operate after sunset or 8 pm (whichever is the earlier) on any day or before 9 am on Sundays and 8 am Monday to Saturday
- “Ride Smart” sticker to be placed so it can be read by the operator from the operating position.
- 7.4 kph (4-knot) speed limits apply in the backwaters of the River Murray  and within 200 metres of the metropolitan shoreline.

In addition to the rules above, Personal watercraft operators must obey the rules and regulations that apply to all vessels.

Information on operating a PWC in South Australia can be found on sa.gov.au

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