Safer Boating

Safer Boating aims to focus boaties’ attention on key safety messages. The campaign began with Safer Boating Week (14-21 October 2016) encouraging boaties to ‘Prep, Check, Know’. This summer (2016-17) the theme is ‘Nobody is faster than disaster’.

On this page:

Summer safer boating campaign

Our advertising for the 2016-17 summer uses the slogan “Nobody’s faster than disaster”, and promotes the safer boating code – wear your lifejacket, take two waterproof ways to call for help, check the marine weather forecast, avoid alcohol, and be a responsible skipper.

The campaign has a strong digital compenent using our geofencing initiative “Virtual Coastwatch” which should push out 3 million safety messages to boaties on the water through smartphones using 24 different platforms, fishing websites and Trade Me. We also link strongly with the Safer Boating Forum to deliver social media to boaties, videos, events, media and notices of different events happening around New Zealand.

Two lifejacket promotions are part of the campaign: Coastguard’s Old4New lifejacket upgrade, which received funds of $75,000 from Maritime NZ and is sponsored by Hutchwilco; and Maritime NZ and Rebel Sports offered a 20% discount off all lifejackets, with advertising sponsored by News Works (this offer has now ended).

Maritime NZ is also funding eight regional councils to run 5 days of a “No Excuses” on the water campaign in each region. The councils will be fining boaties around unsafe speed and not wearing their lifejackets depending on their council bylaws.

Prep, Check, Know

The theme for Safer Boating Week was “Prep, Check, Know”.

That is, prep your boat, check your gear, and know the rules before you go boating. The theme is an umbrella covering all the week’s activity. Different organisations and businesses will focus on different aspects of the theme that are relevant to them.

Prep your boat

Service the engine, check and change the fuel, check the battery and just generally give the boat a good onceover.

Maritime New Zealand ©2016

Check your gear

Maritime New Zealand ©2016

Make sure your lifejackets are still fit for purpose and you have enough. Service any inflatable lifejackets and ensure you have two reliable forms of communication equipment.

Know the rules

Maritime New Zealand ©2016

Ensure you know the ‘rules of the road’ on the water, and check your local bylaws to make sure you understand what the requirements are in your area.

Latest updates

Maritime New Zealand ©2016

Our Facebook page


Safe Boating Programme video

Coastguard Boating Education


Information, videos and guidelines about lifejackets. Read more.

Trip reports

Use your VHF radio to file a trip report with Maritime Radio or your local Coastguard, letting them know where you are going, how many people on board and when you expect to return. Don’t forget to cancel your trip report when you return safely. Trip report form[PDF: 1.85mB, 1 page]
See also:
Nobody is faster than disaster

‘Nobody is faster than disaster’

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