Officers of the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) in Western Province have rescued 75-hose power Yamaha banana boat traveling from Noro to Gizo on 27 December 2020.
Supervising Provincial Police Commander (PPC) Western Province Inspector Wilken Miriki says, “Frontline officers receive a distress call from an elderly mother in the late afternoon yesterday (27 December 2020) that they are running out of fuel as the strong west wind blows and dark cloud covers western part of the Province.”
PPC Miriki adds, “The banana boat was overloaded with people and cargos. They were so fortunate that it was raining but the sea is calm that keeps them floating until police arrive and rescue them.”
Supervising PPC Miriki says, “On the boat, there were ten adults, ten children between the ages of 5 to 15, which total up to 20 passengers.”
RSIPF would like to remind boat owners and skippers of the importance of sea safety. Before you travel, please plan your trip properly. Here are some safety points to remember before travelling:
- Plan your trip and let at least a member of your family know where you are going and what time you expect to arrive;
- Check the weather on SIBC or call the Met Service on 23658 or toll free 933;
- If you start your trip and the weather becomes bad, seek shelter until the sea is calm;
- Make sure your boat is seaworthy and your OBM is serviced and maintained;
- Know your skipper. Make sure they are experienced in driving boats;
- Do not overload your boat;
- Wear life jackets. Take food and water, paddles, first aid kit, anchor and rope, mirror to signal others, tools, bucket, torch, phone, flares and EPIRB;
- Take extra fuel and
- If your skipper is drunk, do not go with them or let them control the boat;
If you require help, at sea call the Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC) on phone 21609 or 27685 or the toll free phone 977; or call the RSIPF National Communication Centre on phone 23666 or the toll free phone 999. Safety at sea starts with you. IF YOU ARE NOT TOO SURE, STAY ASHORE.