Safe jet ski use on Peninsula beaches
We want summer at our beaches to be safe and fun for everyone.
If you see dangerous or life-threatening behaviour on the water when you’re enjoying time at the beach, please call triple zero (000) immediately to report the incident to the police. If an incident has occurred but you are not in immediate danger, report it to Victoria Police by calling 13 14 44
During the busy summer months, our beaches are shared by many swimmers and jet ski / personal water craft (PWC) riders. This raises community concerns and safety issues. Jet ski / PWCs are generally much more powerful and manoeuvrable than traditional powerboats, it's important they are ridden safely and responsibly.
Dedicated Swimming only zones along our beaches exist on Port Phillip Bay Beaches between Mt Eliza and Portsea to improve safety. These zones are prohibited to all vessels.
Maritime Safety Victoria is responsible for general jet ski / PWC compliance matters, the Shire is working with Victoria Police and Maritime Safety Victoria on surveillance and enforcement activities along our beaches this summer. Community Safety Officers are regularly patrolling beaches, watching out for speeding and erratic operation of jet skis and encouraging good behaviour.
Council is calling on the Victorian Government to introduce a range of measures to address community and Council concerns regarding personal safety, amenity and threats to marine wildlife. On the 25th of June 2019 a Council resolution adopted the Personal Watercraft (PWC) Advocacy Paper. A formal request was put to Maritime Safety Victoria on an update of this advocacy piece, the letter can be found here: 20210318-MSV-Letter-Personal-Watercraft-Safety.pdf(PDF, 489KB)
Safe jet ski operation
Maritime Safety Victoria advises riders to remember that PWCs must be operated within the rules relating to powerboats.
Know the rules and 'Ride Right'
The Marine Safety Act 2010 (Vic) introduced new responsibilities on owners, masters and operators of recreational vessels which includes PWCs, including:
- PWCs and other vessels are not permitted to enter or remain in dedicated swimming only zonesI
- In other areas, PWCs and other vessels must not exceed 5 knots (8kph) within 200 metres of the shore or 500 metres from shore as designated from Safety Beach to Portsea
- PWCs and other vessels must not exceed 5 knots (8kph) within 50 metres of swimmers, other vessels, wharfs, jettys, slipways, boat ramps and not exceed 5 knots when passing through a recognised anchorage for small craft.
On-the-spot fines are applicable for PWC / Jet Ski operators found to be contravening these rules.
On-Water Hoon Laws
Hoon behaviour is dangerous and may cause someone to get hurt. It can include:
- Performing ‘doughnuts’ within 50 metres of swimmers or other water users
- Speeding more than 5 knots (8km/h) within 50 metres of swimmers or within 200 metres of the shore
- Victoria Police may seize, impound or immobilise vessels, including PWCs if it is believed they are being or have been used in committing a relevant offence
If you see dangerous or life-threatening behaviour on the water, call '000' and immediately report the incident to the Police.