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On-the-Water Safety

The River Yealm is a great place to play on or in the water, but you do have to be aware of the dangers this may bring.

During the summer the river is very busy with all sizes of boats moving around. Everyone using the water needs to keep a lookout for other water users. If possible, keep close to a shoreline and ask about local conditions.

Below are some links that will help you enjoy your time in or on the water. There is more information available on the internet so please make sure you look at these articles, heed their advice and enjoy the water safely.

 

Wild Swimming

If you are organising an event please contact the Harbour Office well in advance to discuss it. No part of the harbour is a designated bathing area. Swimming in the Pool should be avoided during the summer and swimmers should make themselves aware of the dangers.

Some tips:

  • Never swim alone
  • Tell someone where you are going and when you will return
  • Wear a swimming safety buoy
  • Swimming to and from the Yealm Steps pontoon is not allowed
  • Keep within 10m of the shore
  • Do not cross the Fairway
  • Make sure you know what the tide and weather are doing

additional safety information can be found using these links

https://www.rlss.org.uk/Pages/Category/water-safety-information

https://thenextchallenge.org/10-tips-swimming/

 

Canoeing/Kayaking

If you are involved in teaching or guiding groups you must contact the Harbour Office before launching. More safety information can be found using the following links.

https://gopaddling.info/11-things-to-consider-when-paddling-on-the-sea/

https://rnli.org/safety/choose-your-activity/kayaking-and-canoeing#

 

Paddle boarding

If you are going on the water:

  • Stay Afloat – wear a personal flotation device
  • Stay connected – attach your leash to you
  • Stay in touch – tell someone ashore where you are going
  • Know your limits – check the weather and tides
  • Stay clear – keep to the edge and away from the main channels
  • Know the rules – obey the IRPCS rules and regulations.
  • Understand the Harbour – ask at the Harbour Office if you are unsure about anything.

If you are involved in teaching or guiding groups you must contact the Harbour Office before launching.

More advice can be found using the links below.

https://rnli.org/safety/choose-your-activity/stand-up-paddle-boarding

https://www.supboard-99.co.uk/blog/paddle-board-safety/

 

Dinghy sailing

If you want to sail in the harbour area then here are a few tips that will help you enjoy your trip:

  • Wear a personal flotation device
  • Keep a good look out for other water users
  • The tides in the river can run at up to 2 knots so leave plenty of space to turn
  • Tell someone ashore where you are going
  • Keep clear of the visitor buoys and pontoons, yachts could be turning to come alongside and not see you
  • Check the weather and tides
  • Ask at the Harbour Office if you are unsure about anything
  • Obey the IRPCS rules and regulations.

More advice can be found using the links below.

https://www.rya.org.uk/knowledge-advice/safe-boating/Pages/hub.aspx

https://dbscweb.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/rnli-dinghy-sailing-safety-guide.pdf

 

Yacht sailing

The Harbour is a crowded place in the summer with very many boats, paddle-boards and swimmers enjoying the water. We advise that yachts do not sail in the harbour to the north and east of Misery Point. The tides and wind can be unpredictable catching helmsmen off guard and resulting in an incident or near miss.

More advice can be found using the links below.

https://www.rya.org.uk/knowledge-advice/safe-boating/Pages/hub.aspx

https://rnli.org/safety/choose-your-activity/yacht-sailing-and-motorboating#

 

Motor boating

The Harbour is a crowded place in the summer with very many boats, paddle-boards and swimmers enjoying the water. We advise that motor boat helms take care when entering the harbour on a spring flood tide as your ability to take avoiding action will be diminished, similarly when leaving the harbour on a spring ebb tide, resulting in an incident or near miss.

More advice can be found using the links below.

https://rnli.org/safety/choose-your-activity/yacht-sailing-and-motorboating#

https://www.rya.org.uk/knowledge-advice/safe-boating/Pages/hub.aspx

 

Jet Skis

https://www.realbuzz.com/articles-interests/sports-activities/article/jet-ski-etiquette-safety-and-rules-of-the-water/

https://www.sea-doo.com/owners/safety/safety-tips.html