The UK’s Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) wants to hear recreational boaters’ views on six draft Marine Guidance Notes (MGN) concerning guidance on boat safety over the next few weeks.
RYA cruising manager Stuart Carruthers said: “The MCA has launched this consultation following the Cheeki Rafiki trial where the judge commented that there were aspects not covered by the construction standards for small commercial vessels which should be considered best practice.
“The RYA already provides a considerable amount of safety advice that is readily accessible by the boating public and intends to submit a full response, outlining our views and the concerns of our members.
“Our response will focus on the interests of pleasure boaters with the aim of ensuring that any guidance is clear, realistic and proportionate.”
The six notices cover guidance on keel groundings, rigging inspections, preparedness, stowage of lifesaving gear, vessel resilience and emergency procedures, and maintenance, modifications, damage and repairs.
They are aimed at both small commercial vessels as well as pleasure boats.
The MCA states that it wishes to reinforce to owners, managing agents and skippers of both commercial and pleasure vessels what it considers good practice in terms of safety when going out to sea.
Boaters’ views are sought in the following areas:
- Whether the draft notes contain guidance that is realistic to carry out in practice
- What other costs and benefits there might be that haven’t been included in the de minimis assessment
- If there is the right level of content in each MGN
The consultation closes on Thursday 18 July and the RYA encourages all UK boaters to respond.