Seafood Cruise Mooloolaba Premier Floating Restaurant and Venue Sunshine Coast



WHEN: Saturday 15th December 2012!

START: From 12.30pm to 4.30pm - Afternoon Activities with Sunshine Coast Dragon Boats at Helen Penny Gardens. 6.30pm to 8.30pm Boat Parade - viewing locations recommeneded (see Viewing).


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Marine Safety


Capacity labels


image of a capacity labelOverloading is dangerous and one of the easiest ways to capsize your boat. The more weight in the boat, the lower the freeboard. Freeboard is the minimum vertical distance from the surface of the water to the gunwale. The gunwale is the upper edge of an open boat. Overloading compromises the safety of everyone on board and increases the chance of swamping or capsizing.

When preparing for a trip, the boat operator is responsible for assessing the load on board, both people and objects. For example:

  • heavy items should be stowed in a low and central place where they cannot move around
  • weight, including passengers, should be distributed evenly through the boat
  • the weight of extra fuel and water should be taken into account.

By applying a capacity label you will have a constant reminder of how many people can be safely on board your boat in smooth waters and good conditions.

All registrable recreational boats, with the exception of sailing ships, must have one or more capacity labels attached. Capacity labels should be placed near the boat's control area/s where they can be seen by the operator at all times. A penalty could apply if a capacity label is not attached, unreadable or located in the wrong position on the boat.

There are three different capacity labels available:

  • powered boats under six metres
  • powered boats six metres and over
  • powered boats with a flybridge.

The operator must keep in mind that the label indicates the number of people the boat can safely carry in good conditions and smooth waters. When using the boat in partially smooth or open waters or in rough conditions the operator should consider reducing the number of people taken on the trip.

Department of Transport and Main Roads customer service centres can provide a capacity label when registering or transferring the registration of a boat. Capacity labels are free.

Determining your boat's capacity
There are options to determine your boat's capacity.

  • Australian Builder's Plate or manufacturer's plate
    Take the capacity information from the Australian Builder's Plate or the manufacturer's plate if fitted to your boat. If your boat doesn't have one of these plates, you should contact the manufacturer for details.

    From 1 July 2006, all new recreational boats manufactured in Australia will show an Australian Builder's Plate. Capacity labels are not required if your boat has either a manufacturer's plate or an Australian Builder's Plate, but only if these are clearly visible from each steering position on the boat. You should still consider placing a capacity label on your boat if it provides a more visible reminder of the boat's safe capacity.
  • Capacity assessment tables
    To calculate a boat's capacity, measure the length and beam (width) and match these dimensions in the tables below. These tables are also shown on the back of each capacity label.

    Capacity assessment table — powered boats under six metres
    Length (metres) Recommended maximum number of persons Maximum permissable weight (kilograms)
    up to 3 m 2 180
    3 m to 3.49 m 3 270
    3.5 m to 4.49 m 4 360
    4.5 m to 4.99 m 5 450
    5 m to 5.49 m 6 540
    5.5 m to 5.99 m 7 630

    Capacity assessment table — powered boats six metres and over


    Beam (metres)







    6 7 7 8 9 9 10
    7 8 9 9 10 11 11
    8 9 10 11 12 12 13
    9 10 11 12 13 14 15
    10 11 12 14 15 15 16
    11 13 14 15 16 17 18
    12 14 15 16 18 19 20
    13 15 16 18 19 20 21
    14 16 18 19 21 22 23
    15 17 19 21 22 23 25

    Capacity assessment table — powered boats with a flybridge


    Beam (metres)








    5 4 4 5 5 6 6 -
    6 5 5 6 6 7 7 8
    7 5 6 7 7 8 8 9
    8 6 7 8 8 9 10 10
    9 7 8 9 10 10 11 12
    10 8 9 10 11 12 12 13
    11 - 10 11 13 13 14 14
    12 - 11 12 13 14 15 15
    13 - 12 13 14 15 16 17
    14 - 13 14 15 16 17 18
    15 - 14 15 16 18 19 20

    If your boat is six metres and over and its dimensions are outside those indicated on the assessment tables shown above, you can use a formula to assess capacity.

    For boats six metres or over — capacity = 0.75 x length x vbeam.

    For boats with a flybridge — capacity = 0.6 x length x vbeam.

    Download a technical information sheet about stability testing of powered recreational boats (PDF, 96.6 KB).

Boats with a flybridge
For boats with a flybridge or upper deck with a second steering control, a capacity label should be placed at each steering position so it can be seen by the operator at all times.

Only one quarter of the boat's total permitted number of people may be on the flybridge at any one time. For example, if total capacity of the boat is 12 people, a maximum of three people would be allowed on the flybridge at one time.

When putting capacity labels on a boat with a flybridge, ensure the label on the main deck shows only the main deck capacity and the label on the flybridge shows only the flybridge capacity. For example if the total capacity of the boat is 12, the capacity label should show three on the flybridge section and nine on the main deck section.

When no one is on the flybridge, the total capacity may be carried on the main deck.

You can pick up capacity labels and a brochure at Department of Transport and Main Roads customer service centres or contact a Maritime Safety Queensland regional office.

Capacity label/s and brochure order form.


Collision regulations


Everyone using the waterways should know the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea.

Keeping a lookout
A good lookout through sight and sound must be kept at all times. The master is responsible for keeping a lookout for dangers. Be aware of the boating environment, especially in bad weather, restricted visibility and darkness.

Navigation rules
Navigation rules are often called 'rules of the road at sea' and apply to all boats. These rules give clear indication about passing, approaching, giving way and overtaking other boats.

You should always make your movements clear and deliberate so that other masters can see your intentions. Never assume the master of another boat will observe the rules — always be prepared to take action to avoid a collision.


Animated image showing boats passing in rivers and channelsRivers and channels
A vessel must always be navigated on the starboard side (right) of a river or channel.

Animated image showing boats approaching head onApproaching head on to another boat
Each boat alters course to starboard (right) and passes port to port (left). Always assume this situation exists.

Animated image showing power driven boats crossingPower-driven boats crossing
A boat approaching from your starboard (right) side has right of way. If you are approaching another boat from its starboard side, you have right of way. However, if the other boat does not give way, you must take action to avoid a collision.

Animated image showing boats overtakingOvertaking
If you are overtaking a boat, you can do so at either side of the boat you wish to pass. However, you must keep well clear of the boat you are overtaking. This applies to both sail and power boats.

Animated image showing sailing boats and power driven boats crossingSailing boats and power-driven boats
Power usually gives way to sail. However, this does not always apply. Larger vessels, such as ferries or container ships, have difficulty manoeuvring due to their size. Masters of other boats, including sail boats, should always apply common sense and seamanship by giving larger vessels a wide berth.

Sailing boats

  • When two sailing boats have wind on different sides, the boat with the wind on the port side must give way.
  • When both boats have the wind on the same side, the boat to windward shall give way to the boat to leeward.

Sound signals
Most recreational boats do not use sound signals, however they are used by ships and larger vessels. Boats more than 12 metres should carry sound signals, a whistle and a bell. Vessels under 12 metres should have some means for making an efficient sound signal.

Sound signals are either used to indicate manoeuvring or warning, but also during restricted visibility.

You should be aware of sound signals and what action you should take when you hear a sound signal. Sound signals may be accompanied by light signals.

Manoeuvring and warning

  • One short blast means 'I am altering my course to starboard'.
  • Two short blasts mean 'I am altering my course to port'.
  • Three short blasts means 'I am operating engines astern' (the boat may be reversing or stopping).
  • Five (or more) short blasts mean 'I am unsure of your intentions'.

Restricted visibility
All boats should use sound signals in restricted visibility to alert others of their position. Use common sense and slow your boat or stop and be ready to take immediate action. Be extremely cautious when operating in restricted visibility.

Firefighting equipment


All recreational ships over five metres in length must carry equipment capable of extinguishing a fire quickly and effectively. Fire blankets and extinguishers should be purchased from an authorised dealer who will be able to determine the best type for your needs. Fire extinguishers must be serviced by the manufacturer or an authorised agent before the expiry dates. If the equipment is inoperable it must be replaced.

All commercial ships must carry fire fighting equipment, in particular fire extinguishers.

Portable extinguishers are essentially used for quick response before the combustion has become extensive. Users must take precautions to minimise personal risks from heat radiation and smoke inhalation. Operate all portable extinguishers in the upright position.

In general, when using an extinguisher follow the PASS principal:

P — Pull the pin.
A — Aim low at the base of the fire.
S — Squeeze the handle.
S — Sweep side to side.

Image showing how to pull the pin of a fire extinguisherImage showing how to aim a fire extinguisher at the base of a fireImage showing how to squeeze the handle of a fire extingquisherImage showing how to sweep a fire extinguisher at a fire

Depending on the type and class of ship, other fire fighting equipment is needed like alarms, communication systems, fire pumps, hydrants and hoses.

Navigation lights

Image of navigation lights

Navigating at night requires special care. It is essential for you to see other boats and have them see you.

  • it is difficult to judge distances at night
  • not all navigation hazards will have lights indicating their position
  • background lighting from the shore can cause confusion
  • slow down and keep a good lookout.

Navigation lights are required to be shown on ships operating between sunset and sunrise, and in restricted visibility. Navigation lights indicate the size of the ship, the angle where you see them, the direction the ship is travelling, or if the ship is anchored. Navigation lights should be fitted by the manufacturer or an authorised person. Smaller ships have a number of options including bracketed or combination suction-capped lights. These types of navigation lights are available from marine dealers.

Tips for installing navigation lights (PDF, 125 KB).

  • Animated image indicating lights on sail boats at nightSailboats less than seven metres and vessels under oars must have a torch or lantern showing a white light ready to display in time to prevent a collision.

  • Animated image indicating power driven ship lights at nightPower-driven ships must show sidelights and either an all round white light or a stern and masthead light. Sailboats under engine power are considered to be power-driven ships, and must show the same lights as a power-driven ship.

  • Sailboats less than 20 m in length may combine sidelights and stern lights in a single lantern carried at the top of the mast.

  • Sailboats seven metres or more in length must show sidelights and stern lights. In addition to sidelights they may show two all-round lights in a vertical line (red over green) that may be shown at the top of the mast, but not when a combined lantern is used.

  • Power-driven ships less than seven metres in length and whose speed does not exceed seven knots, may show an all round white light in lieu of sidelights. If practical, these ships should also show sidelights.

  • Image showing an all round white light at nightAll ships at anchor must show an all-round white light.

  • Sport rowing ships
    Ships engaged in rowing activities (training or competition) on the Brisbane River now need to display an all-round white flashing light if they are on the water before sunrise or after sunset.

Commercial ship recognition
Daymarks and navigation lights indicate the activities of larger ships and many commercial and fishing ships. The following examples describe some of the more common day shapes and navigation lights used. For a more comprehensive list, refer to the Small Ships Manual. The lights used to signal particular operations are in addition to standard navigation lights (for example port, starboard, anchor).

  • Ships at anchor
    • Daymark — one black ball when the ship is less than 50 m in length.
    • Lights — commercial ships fishing (other than trawling) should show lights red over white when fishing at night. Commercial ships trawling should show lights green over white when engaged in trawling at night. All ships should keep well clear of fishing ships.
  • Ships restricted in their ability to manoeuvre
    These signals are used by ships engaged in activities such as servicing navigation marks, towing, underwater operations or cable laying.
    • Daymark — black ball over black diamond over black ball.
    • Lights — ships restricted in their ability to manoeuvre should show lights red over white over red.  When these ships are making way they should also show their normal navigation lights.
  • Ships engaged in underwater operations or dredging
    Ships engaged in activities such as underwater operations or dredging must indicate that they are restricted in their ability to manoeuvre. If there is an obstruction on one side of the ship (such as in dredging) signals must also indicate this.
    • Daymark — black ball over black diamond over black ball (to indicate restricted manoeuvrability) plus black diamond over black diamond on the side where it is safe to pass and black ball over black ball on the side where there is an obstruction. In addition, ships engaged in diving operations should also display a rigid code flag 'A' in an area easily visible to others.
    • Lights — red over white over red indicating restricted manoeuvrability plus green over green on the side where it is safe to pass and red over red on the side where there is an obstruction.
  • Ships aground
    These signals do not indicate distress or a need for help.
    • Daymark — black ball over black ball over black ball.
    • Lights — red light over red light.
  • Ships not under command
    These signals indicate inability to manoeuvre when it is not caused by the activity of the ship (for example towing).
    • Daymark — black ball over black ball.
    • Lights — red light over red light.
  • Pilot vessel on duty
    • Daymark — a code flag 'H' should be placed in area easily visible to others.
    • Lights — white light over red light.

Information courtesy of Marine Safety Queensland (MSQ)

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