Every year Gippsland Ports’ Maritime Services Team responds to vessels in our ports and waterways that are sinking and/or leaking contaminants.
Gippsland Ports maintains a year-round capability to respond to marine pollution events in its ports and waterways.
Responding to pollution events is costly and the vessel Owner is responsible for those costs.
It is important that boat owners regularly inspect their vessels to monitor such simple things as solar charges working, batteries being fully charged and that bilge pumps are working. A regular external inspection to confirm that contaminants are not leaking into the waterway is also good practice.
Chris Waites, CEO says: ‘Gippsland Ports’ staff regularly attend vessels that are sinking or have sunk at their berths. A simple maintenance regime can prevent a lot of damage and expense.’
To assist you in developing a routine maintenance plan you should consider:
- Regular slipping/lifting of your vessel to inspect the hull and replace fittings, anodes and antifoul
- Regular testing and inspection of bilge pumps, electrical systems and batteries
- Servicing engines at regular intervals
- Keeping bilges clean, dry and free of oil and oily mixtures
- Having a simple spill kit on board that includes oil absorbent materials
- Taking care when refuelling your vessel to prevent spills
- Checking mooring lines and shackles
- Ensuring you vessel is maintained to a seaworthy standard and that it is in no danger of sinking.
By following a regular inspection and maintenance schedule you can minimise the risk of a costly and potentially damaging marine pollution event.