Skippers sailing through Manukau Harbour earn praise for lifejacket awareness



The Auckland Harbourmaster, Andrew Hayton, is very pleased with the level of compliance with the carriage and wearing of lifejackets on the Manukau Harbour.

After recent patrols, dozens of boats were checked to ensure that they were complying with lifejacket rules and only one was found with an insufficient number on board. This vessel was subsequently escorted back to the boat ramp and the skipper will receive a $200 dollar infringement fine.
It is a legal requirement for every pleasure craft in New Zealand to carry a correctly sized, serviceable lifejacket for each person on board. On a boat which is six metres long or smaller, everyone on board must wear their lifejacket unless the skipper says it is safe to take off.
“The lifejacket message seems to be getting through which is great, as there’s no doubt that wearing one can save your life. Unfortunately, drowning continues to be a key cause of unintentional death in New Zealand, our advice continues to be that if you have it, wear it.”
Whilst in the Manukau, a Harbourmaster patrol vessel also navigated as far as Waiuku wharf. Quite a lot of work has been done by the Harbourmaster’s department over the last couple of years, with some new navigational beacons in the Waiuku Channel and new safety signage at all of the boat ramps.
Captain Hayton added that his team are continuing to look into what else can be done, and are looking at installing some additional navigational marks in the southern part of the Waiuku channel in the future.
“Unfortunately, speed is still an issue with several vessels observed exceeding five knots within 200 metres of the shore. The area off Grahams Beach and Hudsons Beach are marked with five knot buoys, so no vessel should be exceeding that speed when transiting inside the yellow buoys. The Harbourmaster and his team can be reached by calling 09 362 0397 or visit for more information.

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