Powerboat tuition and safe usage.

Safety in the Water:

With the proper knowledge and experience, powerboating is very safe.
Powerboating is driving small open powerboats such as RIBs (rigid inflatable boats), sports boats and small launches. These boats are generally powered by an outboard engine, do not normally have accommodation on board, and so are not intended for extended cruises. They may be used for short coastal or inland trips, fishing, safety cover for other watersports, waterskiing or as a support boat for diving.

When power boating you are interacting between an ocean of air and an ocean of sea with each element doing their own thing. It is therefore important to understand the mechanics of moving a boat across the water, and combine this skill with the ability to understand wind and tide.

If you wish to get the best out of a superb sport seek advice from the professionals like us and take a day out to experience the thrill of powerboating. Once you have given it a go you will be in a better position to decide if you would like to take the sport further, perhaps by buying your own boat, looking for professional boat handling training or teaming-up with like minded people and becoming a regular crew member on somone else’s boat.
On our powerboat experience day you will learn about launching and preparing the boat, basic boat handling and returning to shore.
Here are some tips and pointers you need to consider before taking a powerboat out on your own. Pleasure boating on UK flagged vessels may be largely unregulated in the UK, but that simply means that the onus is on the individual to ensure that they keep both themselves and their vessel safe.

Rules of the road

Let someone know: Make sure someone knows where you are going and arrange to call them when you are there, make sure they know what boat you have , what make it is, colour schemes etc so that if they do need to alert the coastguard they can describe it somewhat better than the typical “err, its white with a blue canopy”.

All the time you are on the water you must keep a good lookout and be ready to

give way to other vessels.
In general, power boats have to keep out of the way of sailing and fishing vessels, and vessels that are hampered by such tasks including dredging, cable laying and so on.
Always keep to the right hand side of channels – golden rule “look to the right, give way to the right, turn to the right and stay to the right”. If you must give way, do it in good time and make a move which will be obvious to the other vessels.

  • Port
    If a power driven vessel approaches on your left (port) maintain your course and speed with caution.
  • Starboard
    If any vessel approaches on your right (starboard), keep out of its way.
  • Stern
    If any vessel approaches you from behind, maintain your course and speed with caution.
  • Head on Situation
    When two power driven vessels are meeting head on, each vessel must alter course to starboard (to the right) and pass well clear of each other.
  • Crossing Situation
    When two power driven vessels are crossing, the vessel with the other on her own starboard side is the give way vessel and must keep clear of the other.
  • Overtaking Situation
    Any vessel (including a sailing vessel) which is overtaking another vessel must keep well clear of the vessel overtaken. You can overtake the other vessel on either side but only when it is safe to do so, and you must keep well clear.
  • Power Meets Sail
    Power driven vessels usually give way to sail, however this does not always apply. Larger power driven craft should be given a wide berth by small sail craft.

The Coastguard is responsible for promoting & ensuring the safety of boaters, co-ordinating Search & Rescue (‘SAR’) cover both at sea and around our shores. Most of the ‘Search & Rescue’ helicopters around the UK are run by the Coastguard who also run numerous small RIBs which provide a useful safety resource to the areas in which they operate.

CG66 The Coastguard Voluntary Safety Identification Scheme
Registering your vessel with the Coastguard Voluntary Safety Identification Scheme could save valuable time and lives in a rescue situation. If you get into difficulty, details of your vessel can be accessed by the Coastguard and will greatly assist rescue teams in identifying your craft. Friends and relatives ashore know who to contact if they are at any time concerned for your safety and can be confident that the Coastguard has your details – a quick call can establish your safety and give reassurance to those ashore. It’s free and the information is used for search and rescue purposes only.

Visit our shop in the heart of Porthcawl to find out more:
49 New Road, Porthcawl, CF36 5DH