Recreational boating research

Maritime NZ undertakes a number of different items of research to understand the behaviours, risk factors and latest figures and statistics on recreational boating in New Zealand.

Key research includes:

Maritime NZ supports the principles of New Zealand’s open government data project to increase the openness and transparency of the Aoteaora NZ government.

Recreational boating fatality report

Each year a number of people die while participating in recreational boating, an activity pursued for enjoyment, or for the benefit of friends or family.

Maritime NZ has compiled in report evaluating the key contributing factors into 92 recreational boating accidents between January 2015 and December 2020. The accidents claimed 98 lives between them.

Each accident is tragic and has its own unique set of circumstances, but the common factors across these accidents can help highlight ways that similar deaths may be prevented in the future.

Recreational Boating Fatality Report – 2015-2020[PDF: 3.3MB, 63 pages]

Recreational boating research conducted by Ipsos New Zealand

Since 2014 Maritime NZ has been undertaking research into recreational boating.

Research NZ conducted the recreational boating research in 2014 and 2016.

From 2017 to 2020, Ipsos New Zealand has conducted the survey annually, before a shift to quarterly surveys from quarter 1 in 2021.

2021 Ipsos quarterly recreational boating research

Since 2017 Ipsos New Zealand has been undertaking the Recreational Boating Survey for Maritime NZ, which used to be conducted once a year, after the busy boating season of summer. The survey asks questions about recreational boat ownership and use, recreational boating information sources, and perceived recreational boating risks. In 2021, Ipsos and Maritime NZ recognised the need to run this project using a quarterly surveying of a general population sample, to overcome the seasonal issues with once-annual fieldwork.

Quarter 1 and 2

The survey was conducted online amongst a nationally representative sample from the NZ adult population. In Q1 2021, data collected ran from 11th to 20th of March for a sample size of 1,007. Q2 2021, data collection ran from 20th to 28th of May for a sample size of 1,004.

Recreational Boating Monitor - Report Q1/2 2021[PDF: 2.43MB, 43 pages]

Related information:
Learn about our latest safety campaign and messages for recreational boaties.

Safety campaigns

Read about the events and initiatives supporting Maritime NZ’s safety campaigns and messages.

See all campaigns
A quick guide to skipper responsibilities.

Know how to operate safely

Know your responsibilities as a skipper and understand the boating rules.
Learn more