Recreational boaties hit with new restrictions
RECREATIONAL boating is the latest in a flurry of outdoor activities cancelled under tightened social distancing restrictions as coronavirus shuts down the globe.
Although an official ban is yet to be confirmed by State Government, Maritime Safety Queensland and VMR organisations have banded together to prohibit the water-based activity.
Under a new directive released Tuesday afternoon boat owners are reminded that recreational boating is no longer permitted, following the most recent Federal Government restrictions surrounding COVID-19.
In the statement released by QMR, general manager Angus Mitchell said it was important for boat owners to adhere to public gathering restrictions of no more than two people.
“People should stay home unless they are shopping for essentials, receiving medical care, exercising or travelling to work or education.”
“This applies to all activities that are not specifically exempted – boating is NOT,” he said.
There is, however, a loophole in the restrictions for those still raring to get out on the water.
“The only ‘permitted circumstance’ in line with the government which might reasonably be considered to include recreational boating is that of physical exercise.”
Mr Mitchell continued that unless water-goers intended to use waterways as part of their physical exercise regimen then they would not be exempt.
“This would be most reasonably interpreted as boating in a non-powered craft (i.e. paddle, kayaks or such). You should not be undertaking any non-essential movement in line with government directions.”
Boating compliance officers from Maritime Safety Queensland, QLD Boating and Fisheries and the Queensland Police Service have also been enlisted to enforce the new regulations.