In a boating emergency

Radio for help on

Channel 16 on VHF 
(distress and calling channel)

Channel 88 (27.880 MHz) 
on a 27 MHz radio


Call MRNSW on

9450 2468


Or call




MarineRescue App

The new MarineRescue App is making it easier than ever for boaters to Log On, Log Off and stay safe on NSW waters. It's the only app that will connect you directly to Marine Rescue NSW.

Weather Warnings

Weather Warnings for New South Wales / Australian Capital Territory - marine areas. Issued by the Australian Bureau of Meteorology
Current weather warnings for New South Wales / Australian Capital Territory, Australia including strong wind, gale, storm force and hurricane force wind warnings; tsunami; damaging waves; abnormally high tides; and tropical cyclones.
Weather Warnings for New South Wales / Australian Capital Territory - marine areas. Issued by the Australian Bureau of Meteorology

News & Media

  • Lifejackets do save lives. Wear yours on board this long weekend
  • October 03, 2014

Photo: The end of a tow line is no place to spend a holiday on the water


This year’s boating season has kicked off with a recent burst of warm weather and Marine Rescue NSW has urged skippers to make sure everyone on board is wearing a lifejacket at all times.

The October long weekend marks the traditional start of the peak season on NSW waters, when MRNSW units brace for a potential surge in boating breakdowns as people re-launch their boats after the winter lay-off.

MRNSW Commissioner Stacey Tannos encouraged boaters to ensure they had carried out basic maintenance checks on their boats and equipment but stressed that wearing a lifejacket was the simplest safety measure to help protect lives in a boating emergency.

“There has been a dramatic reduction in the number of lives lost in boating accidents from the awful toll of 27 in 2012-13 to eight in 2013-14. While this is welcome, it is still far too high,” he said.

“Lifejackets do save lives, but a lifejacket can only save your life if you are wearing it. Putting on your lifejacket should be the very first thing you do when you step on board your boat.

“The skipper is responsible for the safety of their boat and all passengers and should ensure everyone on board wears their lifejacket at all times until safely back on shore.

“Many accidents and mishaps are not foreseeable and conditions can change rapidly on the water. It’s not worth risking your life or those of your family and friends. You don’t want to spend the rest of your life wishing you’d been safe, not sorry.

”Modern, light-weight jackets are comfortable and allow for a full range of movement. If you find your old lifejacket bulky and cumbersome to wear for extended periods, it’s time to invest in a new model.”

This summer many Marine Rescue NSW units will be supporting Transport for NSW’s  Old4New lifejackets campaign enabling boaters to update their lifejackets, with volunteers on hand to provide boating safety advice and information.

Commissioner Tannos said some skippers would discover, to their dismay, that something on their boat or trailer didn’t work as it should after spending the winter months idle.

“Over recent years, about 50 per cent of rescue calls to MRNSW have been the result of mechanical problems, often caused by contaminated fuel. Electrical or flat battery problems cause an average of 10 per cent of calls, followed by people running out of fuel in six per cent of cases.

“This means two-thirds of all breakdowns to which our volunteers respond are caused by problems that could most likely have been prevented by thorough maintenance checks and proper preparation,” he said. 

“All skippers should check their boat’s mechanics, electrical systems and trailer and have any essential maintenance work carried out before heading out for another summer on the water.

“Most importantly, check all your safety equipment. Are the lifejackets due for servicing? Check your flares and EPIRBS if you’re carrying them and replace your torch batteries. This equipment could save your life.”

Skippers should always Log On with their nearest MRNSW unit whenever they head out on the water and Log Off when they return so someone responsible knows where they’re headed and when they’re safely back on shore. If a boater does not Log Off as scheduled, MRNSW volunteers can start work to locate them.

To find your nearest MRNSW unit, visit www.marinerescuensw.com.au

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