Got a boat? Get it ship shape for Easter.

(Last Updated On: April 19, 2014)

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The long Easter weekend is the ideal time to get the boat back on the water and the Coastguard is calling on people to check that all is in order before setting out.

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Last year, the Coastguard dealt with 189 incidents in the four days from Good Friday to Easter Monday. One of the most common calls was for boats that had broken down or suffered some sort of machinery failure.

Richard Martin, Chief Coastguard, said:

“When a boat has been out of action over the winter months, it is important to check that everything is ship shape before taking to the water for the first time.

“The UK coastline is a great place to enjoy and has a lot to offer at this time of year, with the days getting longer and weather improving.

“The Coastguard would encourage people to make the most of it – and to do so safely. The last thing anyone wants is that Easter holiday boat trip ending with a call for help.”

As well as checking that vessels are in good order, those taking to the water should follow simple safety measures.

Mr Martin said:

“Those heading out in a boat, canoe, kayak or other leisure vessel should wear an appropriate lifejacket or buoyancy aid.

“People should also check the weather and tide times before setting out, to make sure they are not putting themselves in danger.

“If you are thinking of swimming, make sure that you know the conditions beforehand – even calm seas can conceal strong currents.

“If you see someone in difficulty, you should call 999 straight away and ask for the Coastguard.”

Apart from boats breaking down, other common calls to the Coastguard around this time last year included people cut off by rising tides or swimmers who have got into trouble in the water.


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            Team account for We Are South Devon.