Be prepared with knowledge of local conditions and dangers, take appropriate safety precautions, know your limits and above all wear your lifejacket.

That’s the plea from WaterSafe Auckland (WAI) to land-based fishers this weekend in an effort to prevent them becoming another drowning statistic.

This is our last long weekend for a while, and with good weather on the cards and daylight saving ending soon we expect many fishers will be heading out to their favourite spot to make the most of it, says WaterSafe Auckland’s Business Manager Teresa Stanley.

“Whether that’s to the river mouth to set a net or out to our rugged west coast to fish off the rocks, the message is the same – it’s about making safer decisions, armed with the right equipment and knowledge.”

Teresa says wearing a lifejacket [or personal flotation device] is the first layer of protection for land-based fishers.

Not only does it provide flotation, but by allowing the wearer to remain still it helps conserve energy and delay the onset of hypothermia.

“A few minutes spent in preparation checking the tides, weather conditions and your equipment, as well as putting on a lifejacket, goes a long way to ensuring families are spared the tragic loss of a loved one this Easter,” says Teresa.

WAI urges all fishers to carefully consider the information contained in a series of simple safety messages that are fundamental to staying safer in, on and around water.


1.    Be prepared

 

  • Use appropriate safety equipment – wear a lifejacket (a manual inflatable lifejacket makes it easier to move in the water)
  • Wear appropriate clothing for your activity and the conditions
  • Know the weather and tide conditions expected
  • Know what to do in an emergency

 

2.    Watch out for yourself and others

 

  • Fish with someone who is experienced and has local knowledge
  • Learn safe fishing practices – for the local conditions
  • Let someone know where you are fishing and when you plan to return

 

3.    Be aware of the dangers

 

  • Rips, currents and tides will change water depth and ability to stand in the water
  • Obey all safety signs and warnings
  • Never tie anything to yourself
  • Have sufficient rope length to reach the shore without having to struggle with the weight of a net
  • Avoid alcohol while fishing

 

4.    Know your limits

 

  • Learn safe ways of rescuing others without putting your own life in danger
  • Be honest with yourself about your own abilities
  • If in doubt, stay out

For further information or interviews contact:

Teresa Stanley
P 027 285 9045
teresa.stanley@watersafe.org.nz

For further safety advice for a variety of contexts visit our Community Safety page.