Nambucca Unit joins first Marine Rescue Expo

Marine Rescue Nambucca at the first Coffs Harbour Marine Rescue Expo, launched as a community information day about all things water safety.

MARINE Rescue NSW held its first Expo on Saturday 30 September in Coffs Harbour and the team from Nambucca shared the limelight.

The event was held on the site of the Sunday Harbourside Market adjacent to Coffs Harbour Jetty.

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Marine Rescue Nambucca was invited to participate to help promote Marine Rescue NSW and to highlight the organisation’s mission of ‘Saving Lives on the Water’.

Marine Rescue Nambucca Acting Unit Commander Col Cracknell told News Of The Area, “The expo was an opportunity to showcase our various assets which differ from Unit to Unit.”

Marine Rescue Units have a range of vessel sizes and types to suit the needs of a particular unit.

“Depending on the operational environment that each unit has to deal with will dictate what size and type of vessel is the best fit,” Col said.

The Nambucca Unit transported its Primary Rescue Vessel ‘Nambucca 20’, the oldest vessel in the Marine Rescue NSW Fleet, a 6.8m Naiad Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat (RHIB), to be a part of the display.

They also arranged for two Rescue Water Craft (Jet Skis) to be present on the day from the Port Macquarie Unit.

The three vessels represent the full fleet from Nambucca which are ideally suited to use in the local river systems and also with an ability to operate in the open waters outside the Nambucca bar.

The Marine Rescue Nambucca Unit is responsible for the tidal waters from Scotts Head in the south to Urunga in the north.

This includes both the Nambucca River systems and the Bellinger/Kalang River systems.

“Having vessels that can be launched directly from our base in Wellington Drive, Nambucca Heads and also being able to be put on trailers and deployed elsewhere in the state places the Nambucca Unit in the unique position of being one of the few units that are truly mobile and able to respond to situations outside our normal operating area in support other Emergency Services,” Col said.

“In the past we have supported other Marine Rescue Units as well as NSW Police, RFS and SES,” he said.

The Expo was well attended by the community who heard about water safety and boating rules, including demonstrations.

Primarily styled as a day to showcase what Marine Rescue does, it also served well as a fun, family day out.

Over the course of the day the public flowed through to see the high impact display of marine equipment.

The Water Police presented the interactive display of Jet Skis, Transport for NSW – Maritime promoted boating safety and the State Emergency Service (SES) showcased major rescue vehicles.

In addition to the equipment on display, there was a distress flares demonstration on the water nearby, and an opportunity to look over Coffs rescue vessel, Shearwater, at the public mooring.

People could also go up to Beacon Hill where the Marine Rescue Base is and see what goes on in this important look out and operations facility.

There were demonstrations of CPR resuscitation and use of defibrillators.

The Marine Expo was opened by Member for Coffs Harbour Gurmesh Singh, Shadow Minister for Emergency Services.

Jane Leach, local Unit Commander gave a brief speech of introduction followed by Zone Duty Operations Manager for Mid North Coast, Rodney Page, who presented an overview of Marine Rescue NSW.

A Welcome to Country by the Robinson family of Gumbaynggirr Rangers, in the form of song, dance and a smoking ceremony, added drama and colour to the opening.

In keeping with the promise of family interests, there was an abundance of barbecue foods and drinks, plus a Latin dance exhibition and a wonderful children’s piñata created much excitement.

A successful multiple prize raffle assisted Coffs Harbour unit with much needed funds to operate this awesome service.


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