Maritime Authority of Jamaica urges holidaymakers to take precautions
As the Heroes Day weekend approaches, the Maritime Authority of Jamaica is urging boaters to be vigilant and to take precautionary measures when traversing waterways.
“The Maritime Authority of Jamaica takes the safety and protection of life at sea very seriously,” said retired Rear Admiral Peter Brady, Director General of the MAJ.
“Passengers must be watchful for possible danger and boat owners and drivers alike must consider highly enough, their own safety and that of their passengers, and to take every precaution when transporting passengers”.
Brady outlined some guidelines with which Coxswains (persons steering the vessel) of passenger-carrying vessels must comply:
1. Vessels must be registered and licensed by the MAJ to carry passengers.
2. Engage in a safety brief prior to commencement of a voyage.
3. Ensure that lifejackets are properly fitted and worn by all passengers.
4. Display coxswain license of the skipper.
5. Show on demand by the travelling public or law enforcement (Marine Police and the JDF Coast Guard) the safety certificate of the vessel.
6. Operate the vessel in accordance with the conditions listed on the safety certificate and must not exceed the passenger complement that is stated.
He is encouraging passengers to ensure that they also follow the guidelines.
If a coxswain does not comply, passengers should put their safety first and not board such a vessel.
“ Passengers must pay keen attention to the weather. If the seas are rough and waves are high, do not proceed on boat rides,” Brady said.