CoastguardMana Saving Lives at Sea

Quiet summer for Coastguard Mana

04 Feb 2013
Posted by Mark Presling
Printer-friendly version

Kapiti Island from Pukerua Bay, Wellington on Christmas DayKapiti Island from Pukerua Bay, Wellington on Christmas Day Summer usually brings a steady increase in the Search and Rescue workload of Coastguard units around the country. However, Coastguard Mana has experienced an anomoly in the number of rescues and water-related incidents this year - even though we've had one of the warmest, driest and calmest summers in years.

As our Previous Operations page shows, we had a couple of minor operations in October 2012 and then nothing through to the end of January 2013 when two broken down vessels required a tow. During this time we were paged by Police approximately 5 times before being stood down due to people self-recovering or being assisted by others.

What is the reason for this 'anomoly'? Are people practicing safer boating techniques? Does the calm weather mean less people are getting into difficulty even though the total number of vessels on the water increases substantially? Are boat engines and control systems getting more reliable than they used to be? Are the local boaties just really awesome people and supporting each other by towing each other home (we do know for a fact that this has been the case as we've regularly seen/heard it happening)?

We don't really know the answer to that question but we are happy that people have been able to get out on the water and have an enjoyable time. However, we know what it's like to own and operate a boat - anything can happen at any time. Therefore we will continue to train our volunteer crews to respond to any emergency situation should it arise. Coastguard professional volunteers participate in rigorous and regular training schedules. This training ensure they have the skills and expertise required to handle sometimes bitter and challenging weather or sea conditions, and the issues that might confront them as they reach the scene.
Our volunteers are ordinary people with ordinary day jobs. From accountants to armoury sergeants; firemen to farmers; PAs to policemen: anyone with a desire to make their life count for something.

In the event of a maritime emergency - in the first instance - please make an appropriate call (Mayday or Pan Pan) on VHF channel 16 or telephone the Police on 111. They will contact the nearest Coastguard unit.

Happy boating!

Syndicate content