Boating in Northland
Your regional Harbourmaster’s news SPRING / SUMMER 2011
TIDE TURNING FOR MOORINGS
CONTENTS There are currently about 3000 swing moorings in high demand areas as a
and pile moorings in Northland, of which result,” says Ben.
Page 1: Welcome to Northland
more than 2300 are in mooring zones and
Tide turning for moorings
only around 350 of these have resource The proposal would see the council
Page 2: Anchoring ban for safety sake consent. reallocate the mooring space to people
Page 3: Navigation bylaw changes on an official waiting list – compiled on a
Page 4: Diving safety Northland Regional Council Policy first-come, first-served basis – rather than
Keeping boats and moorings Specialist Ben Lee says the council is them being sold.
shipshape considering a number of changes to the
way these mooring zones are managed in The possibility of making mooring space
Northland, including one that will remove non-transferrable may become part of
NAU MAI, HAERE MAI the need for a consent and make all
existing moorings in designated mooring
the upcoming review of the council’s
Navigation Safety Bylaws (see the article
zones ‘permitted activities’. on P2).
Welcome to Northland
“This means that only new moorings will “Part of the argument for making
Summer boating in Northland is always busy require consent for the initial placement mooring space non-transferable is the
and the Northland Harbourmaster’s Office is of the mooring, while all others will be issue of private individuals benefitting
expecting this season to be no different. ‘permitted’,” says Ben. from what is public space,” says Ben.
There’s a record 51 cruise ships booked to “Moorings would still require a licence “Currently no one who uses coastal water
arrive in the Bay of Islands this season, which under the council’s Navigation Safety space pays anything to occupy that space
typically runs from October to April, with the Bylaws and there may also be some new – so private users of a public resource get
largest – the ‘Radiance of the Seas’ – almost restrictions on moorings in some areas, for to use it for free and prevent others from
300 metres long and weighing more than example they may not be able to be used using the same space.”
90,000 tonnes. (See Anchoring ban for for vessels that can be transported on a
safety sake on P2 to find out how this will trailer.” There is also a commitment in the Draft
affect you.) New Regional Policy Statement to
“These changes are part of a change to introduce coastal occupation charges
There are some key changes to Northland the Regional Coastal Policy, which will be which will see private users pay for the
mooring regulations that all mooring- open for submissions early next year.” (To privilege of using public space, although
holders should be aware of. Check out the find out more go to www.nrc.govt.nz/ there are currently no details as to what
article this page, for more information. mooringsandmarinas) the value of this will be.
Safety on Northland waters is the primary Ben says the second of the proposed The Draft New RPS is currently available
concern of the Harbourmaster’s Office. The changes is to make mooring space non- for public consultation on the council’s
Navigation Safety Bylaws set out the rules transferable, which will make them website www.nrc.govt.nz/newRPS or
that help us keep our coast safe for all users. potentially cheaper to own, particularly in freephone 0800 002 004.
prime coastal spots.
This year we’re proposing a number of If you’d like to comment on any of
changes to the bylaws – find out more about “The issue is that some moorings are the proposed changes you can email
these and how you can have your say in currently being transferred between Northland Regional Council Policy Analyst
Navigation bylaw changes (P3). owners for as much as $20,000 as opposed Michael Day, on email@example.com
to what they typically cost to buy – $2800 or Ben Lee, Policy Specialist on benl@nrc.
Jim Lyle to $4000 – and there are many unused govt.nz or freephone 0800 002 004.
Northland Regional Harbourmaster
Putting Northland first
Boating in Northland Your regional Harbourmaster’s news
ANCHORING BAN FOR SAFETY SAKE
Concerns over recreational boaties “But in recent years, we’ve been This applies to all vessels in the Bay of
stopping in the approach path of huge experiencing increasing problems with Islands Harbour, which is inside the line
cruise ships has prompted a ban on other, smaller vessels anchored in the way between Cape Wiwiki, Ninepin Island and
anchoring in part of the Bay of Islands of the cruise ships.” Cape Brett.
when the larger vessels are moving within
the harbour. Jim says in many cases the smaller boats do “This bans any vessel from anchoring
not even realise a ship is approaching while within any sector of the Waitangi Sector
The Northland Regional Council’s Öpua- they are concentrating on their fishing. light, from the 10 metre depth contour line
based Regional Harbourmaster Jim Lyle adjacent to Hermione Rock, out to three
says the ban – which took effect recently “Some of these cruise vessels are roughly nautical miles from Täpeka Point towards
– comes amid safety concerns as increasing as long as Auckland’s Sky Tower is tall and Ninepin Island when a vessel over 500 gross
numbers of cruise ships visit the Bay of they weigh many tens of thousands of tonnes is moving within the harbour.”
Islands. tonnes which means they obviously can’t
manoeuvre anything like as quickly and The ban applies when the larger ship is
Jim says a record 51 cruise ships are booked nimbly as a smaller vessel.” either approaching to pick up a pilot,
to arrive this season, between them approaching to drop anchor or picking up
carrying about anchor to leave the harbour.
and crew, many Jim says any vessel that is
during the busy anchored in this area must
months of January keep a sharp lookout for
and February. approaching or departing
vessels. (They usually arrive
Jim says under early morning, and leave late
Maritime NZ afternoon or early evening, but
rules, ships more can move at any time.)
than 500 gross
tonnes (GT) must “If one is seen, the anchored
be guided by a vessel should immediately pick
licensed pilot into up anchor and move away from
the Bay. the limits of the sector light.”
“To do this the Similarly, if the Northland
cruise ships Regional Council pilot vessel
approach on approaches and signals any
the Waitangi vessel that it is impeding the
sector light and safe navigation of another ship,
rendezvous with that vessel must immediately
the pilot, who pick up anchor and move away
boards the cruise from the limits of the sector
ship about three light.
nautical miles out from Täpeka Point, and “It is also important that they stay in deep
in line with the Waitangi sector light. The water, and are not forced to stray closer to Jim says if people are unsure whether a
ship then heads in on the sector light to the shallow reefs just to avoid small boats. vessel over 500 GT is moving, or is likely
anchor within the Bay of Islands pilotage People should also realise that once they to move within the harbour, they need to
area at a position decided by the pilot.” are close under the bow they disappear err on the side of caution and not anchor
from view from the bridge of the cruise within the sector light limits.
He says the large ships, which have drafts ship.”
of up to 10 metres, are required to stay
within the sector light approach for Jim says to avoid potential accidents, he
navigational safety reasons. recently issued a Harbourmaster’s Directive.
Report all oil spills, accidents or navigational hazards
NAVIGATION BYLAW CHANGES
NRC Nav Safety Bylaw 2011_Nav Safety Bylaw 24/08/11 12:24 PM Page a
Navigation Safety Jim says among the main changes the
council’s proposing will be:
• Extra information on ‘prohibited
areas’, including a map showing
Bylaw 2011 prohibited areas around the New
• A new definition of ‘estuary’ and Zealand Refining Company wharves
‘estuary mouth’. This is included to and one which applies (subject to
clearly spell out where some activities certain circumstances and conditions)
could be limited, like kiteboarding around the Northport wharf.
at speeds above 5 knots close to
shore. (This proposed change comes • Changes to some ‘prohibited
in response to concerns about anchorages’ as a result of alterations
swimmers’ safety.) to underwater cable areas in recent
• Dropping the current exemption
allowing board sport enthusiasts • A new section containing safety
to travel faster than 5 knots within information and guidelines. These
50 metres of any other vessel, raft, include recommendations for
Putting Northland first
or person in the water. Under the visibility of kayaks, stand up paddle
proposed change, an exemption boarding, bar crossing procedures
within 200 metres of shore would and a trial of a tsunami warning light
only apply if the board sport was in the Tutukäkä marina.
carried out on the seaward side of
the estuary mouth. Once the official summer submission
period is over, the council will hold
This summer the Northland Regional • Introduction of new areas that would hearings to consider people’s comments
Council is consulting on a number allow people to exceed 5 knots for in March 2012.
of proposed changes to its existing certain recreational activities. These
Navigation Safety Bylaws that could would be additional to – or replace – Any changes to be implemented as
affect a variety of issues – from permitted ski lanes in certain areas. Some access a result will need to be approved by
speeds to lifejacket use. lanes are to be modified or removed councillors and are likely to take effect in
due to increasing activity posing mid-2012.
Jim Lyle, the council’s Regional hazards.
Harbourmaster, says full details of all For more information, contact the
the proposed changes will be made • A rewrite of the entire clause on council on 0800 002 004.
available later this year when an official lifejackets to reinforce that legally
consultation period begins and he’s one must be carried for everyone
encouraging as many people as possible on board. The rewritten text would
to comment on them. also stress that lifejackets must FIND OUT MORE
also actually be worn under certain
“Submissions don’t have to be limited circumstances and conditions. • Navigation Safety Bylaws
to our proposed changes – it’s also
• Marine pollution regulations
your opportunity to have your say on • Adding ‘pile’ to the definition of a
anything you’d like to see included in mooring. This proposal has been • All you need to know when you’re
these bylaws.” added to make it clear that – like out on Northland’s waters
swing moorings – pile moorings also
require regular maintenance.
24/7 Environmental Hotline 0800 504 639
Boating in Northland Your regional Harbourmaster’s news SPRING / SUMMER 2011
If you’re out diving this summer remember Northland’s Navigation Safety Bylaw
to display a blue and white dive flag! sets out the regulations that need to be
followed when out on the region’s waters
That’s the message from the Northland including those regarding dive flags.
Regional Council’s Deputy Harbourmaster
Chidambaram Surendran. “The dive boat is required to remain within
200 metres of the divers with the boat crew
“All divers need to follow dive safety rules ready to quickly help them if needed,” says
and have a dive flag (Flag A) of not less Chidambaram.
than 600 x 600mm on the boat so anyone
passing knows there are people in the He says other vessels in the area should not
water,” he says. exceed 5 knots within 200 metres of a vessel
flying a dive flag and should keep a good
“Cloth flags are the best however the lookout.
flag can be made from a flat piece of any
suitable material cut to size, painted and “Remember, plan your dive and dive your
displayed.” plan! Dive safe everyone.”
KEEPING BOATS AND MOORINGS SHIPSHAPE REGIONAL OFFICES
The Northland Regional Council’s maritime Jim says that if boats become unseaworthy,
team has been involved in several boat and and sink, or look like they have the Report all navigation hazards to:
mooring safety incidents over the last few potential to sink, the maritime team tries to
weeks. contact the owner from the details on the
mooring file. WHÄNGÄREI KAITÄIA
36 Water Street 192 Commerce Street
Regional Harbourmaster Jim Lyle says the
P: 09 438 4639 P: 09 408 6600
incidents included an anchored boat that “If the owner is difficult to locate and a
F: 09 438 0012 F: 09 408 6601
was holed by its own anchor coming free, problem arises, the maritime team may
a houseboat taking on water, a boat that end up having to remove the vessel at the DARGAVILLE ÖPUA
almost sank when the bilge failed and a owner’s expense,” he says. 61b Victoria Street Unit 10, Öpua Marine Park
launch that broke free from its mooring as P: 09 439 3300 P: 09 402 7516
the headline was worn and parted. “Owners need to make sure if they go F: 09 439 3301 F: 09 402 7510
overseas, or live out of the region, that
“Boats require regular maintenance to they have a local contact on the regional
keep them safe and seaworthy – often, council’s mooring file so we can contact 24/7 Environmental Hotline
0800 504 639
the maintenance required is simple and someone if there is a problem. Contact
inexpensive,” says Jim. details clearly visible on the boat will also
“Similarly, moorings should be visually
inspected regularly to check the condition He says the worse case scenario if they Twitter:
of the headlines, as these ropes often cannot locate an owner is the vessel is sold www.twitter.com/NRCExpress
chafe on the fairlead or anchor and wear to recover costs.
through. Owners also need to check any
protective cover is secure and in the right
Putting Northland first