GOOD WORK: Marine Rescue Point Danger unit commander Glenda Ashby and fellow volunteers Stephen Walters and Philip Pickering  in their communications headquarters.
GOOD WORK: Marine Rescue Point Danger unit commander Glenda Ashby and fellow volunteers Stephen Walters and Philip Pickering in their communications headquarters. Liana Turner

Project targets North Coast black spots

MARINE RESCUE Point Danger - Saving Lives on Water

WORK is about to start on a $754,000 project to eliminate marine radio black spots on the northern New South Wales coastline to ensure distress calls from boaters are received swiftly and efficiently.

The first stage of the project involves the installation of new VHF radios, aerials and microwave links on Clarence Peak, south-west of Yamba.

Equipment will be transported to the site by four-wheel-drive vehicle with a trip to the summit expected to take about 60 minutes.

This stage of the project will address a black spot between Iluka-Yamba and Wooli.

MRNSW deputy commissioner Dean Storey said the project would ultimately save lives on the water.

"This major investment in marine radio infrastructure of the North and Mid North Coasts will eliminate certain black spots and enable mayday and pan-pan calls to be received clearly," he said.

"In the event of an emergency, MRNSW and our water safety partners can mount a rapid search and rescue operation".

Mr Storey said the project would also strengthen the communications network for disseminating emergency warnings and information before, during and after a tsunami, cyclone or storm.

"This project follows a comprehensive 2014 marine radio communications review commissioned by MRNSW and funded by a NSW Government grant," he said.

"We expect to see all projects delivered by the start of the 2018-19 peak summer period."

MRNSW owns, maintains and operates the only marine radio network for the state's boating community. It is used by recreational boaters, small commercial operators, transiting vessels, race fleets and government agencies.

As summer approaches, MRNSW units are conducting a targeted campaign to increase boaters' general awareness of the safety benefits of VHF marine radio procedures and correct calling procedures.

Marine Rescue Point Danger has 21 radio operators and five trainees monitoring marine radios.

RADIO CLUB PROMOTION

Point Danger performs numerous rescues throughout the year. Many of these rescued boaters show their appreciation by giving a donation. Point Danger have a Radio Club that boaters can join for $75 per annum which is a forward donation made in the event of requiring our rescue vessel to go to their aid. If you are a member of our Radio Club you are not expected to give a donation each time you may require help over the twelve months.

Point Danger is running a Radio Club promotion commencing November 1 until March 1, 2018. Any new or existing Radio Club member who renews or joins the MRPD Radio Club will automatically go into the draw to win a Raymarine Ray 50 VHF Marine Radio. As an added bonus if a current member refers a new member, they will receive an additional bonus entry into the draw.

For all further enquiries on joining our Radio Club, please contact Marine Rescue Point Danger on 07 5536 9333 or visit our gift shop at Point Danger.

* Marine Rescue Point Danger contributes a monthly column to the Tweed Daily News.



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