Competitors at January's CRC Bay of Islands Sailing Week are being encouraged to focus on keeping their crews and other water users safe, with the launch of the event’s #safetysnaps competition today.
By taking a photo or video of one of the ways their vessel or crew comply with the relevant safety regulations for the regatta, and uploading it with the #safetysnaps hashtag, participants will go into a draw to win an offshore medical course and other boating safety prizes.
Principal race officer Ian Clouston says the regatta’s organisers wanted a fun way to get participants on board with the safety requirements for the event, rather than taking a heavy-handed approach.
“We’ve had a good safety record in the past, so we’ve never really taken a strict enforcement approach to the safety regulations so far, but that’s no reason to get complacent” he said.
“Safety is a major priority for us, especially as the event grows and we’ve got more boats on the water. So we decided it was time to be more proactive with the safety regs and do more random spot checks during the regatta.”
While those found not to comply with the relevant regulations for their division can be penalised or even disqualified from races, Clouston said they will be looking to educate and assist participants to comply before taking any such action.
“We’ll also be giving a free prize draw entry to any boats we randomly check who meet the safety regs”, he said.
Prizes for the #safetysnaps competition have been kindly donated by Dr Dave Austin, the renowned offshore medical instructor, and Burnsco Opua.
The CRC Bay of Islands Sailing Week is this country's biggest keelboat regatta and takes place in from January 26-29.
Find out more about the #safetysnaps competition and enter on the CRC Bay of Islands Sailing Week website here.