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Mission Beach Police urge Cassowary Coast ‘boaties’ to check their marine flares and safety equipment

10/September/2021

Cassowary Coast ‘boaties’ are urged to check the expiry date of their marine flares after Mission Beach Police identified a number of boats equipped with expired flares.

Having the right safety equipment on your boat and knowing how to use it is essential.

It could save your life in an emergency.

Ensure your equipment is current, in date and correct for your vessel by conducting regular checks of your safety equipment.

If you identify flares that are expired, they can be taken to a flare disposal location.

Marine distress flares are a means for ‘boaties’ in genuine distress to signal that they require assistance.

The three different types of marine distress flares that are commonly used can all be seen for several kilometres, especially at night.

People illegally activating marine distress flares during parties and times of celebration for entertainment value or for non-distress situations could be fined and may be required to appear before the courts.

Although people immediately around them may know there is no distress situation, someone seeing the flare from a distance is not to know whether the activation of the flare is a distress situation or not.

It is the duty of the Queensland Police Service to respond to flare sightings and fully investigate and determine the source of the flare.

Activating a flare could trigger a search and rescue initiated by authorities. If it is found the flare was wrongfully activated, the person who set it off may be required to reimburse the search costs involved. 

Members of the public who see a distress flare should notify police immediately.

Should you see a flare and you know there is a beach party or the like and the flare activation is not as a result of a distress situation, please call police immediately so inquiries can be made and a suitable course of action can be taken.

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