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Safety equipment for boats in Queensland

Having the right safety equipment on your boat and knowing how to use it is essential—to save your life in an emergency.

What safety equipment do I need?

There are 3 types of safety equipment for boats registered in Queensland: 

The safety equipment you're required to carry depends on the size of your boat, whether the boat needs to be registered and where you're operating.

Some boats (also known as prescribed other Queensland regulated ships) may be required to carry additional or specific types of safety equipment such as those required under the national system.

To comply with your General Safety Obligations you should carry the appropriate safety equipment for the area they operate in, in case there is an emergency. You need to prepare for the unexpected.

Standard safety equipment for registered boats

Equipment Smooth waters Partially smooth waters Beyond partially smooth waters
Must carry the following equipment
EPIRB or PLB*   ✔#
Flares (2 red hand-held and 2 orange smoke)


Fire fighting equipment

Signalling device if operating at between sunset and sunrise (e.g. torch, lantern, glow stick)
V sheet

Should carry the following equipment
Anchor ✔ (with cable appropriate for size of vessel) ✔ (with cable appropriate for size of vessel) ✔ (with cable appropriate for size of vessel)
Chart  
Compass  

Drinking water
Handheld electronic navigation device (if not equipped with a chart and compass)
Lifejacket
✔ Lifejacket level 50, 100, 150, 275 or level 50 special purpose
✔ Lifejacket level 100, 150, 275 or level 50
✔ Lifejacket level 100, 150, 275
Oars or paddles (for boats under 6m)


Pumping or bailing equipment

# Owners/masters must give each person on board information about where the safety equipment is kept. Lifejackets must be clearly visible to passengers or readily accessible and indicated by a clearly visible sign with a white background marked with the word 'lifejackets' in red letters or vice versa.

* PLBs may used by lightweight craft operators only and only in accordance with the conditions of carriage.

# Required when operating more than 2 nautical miles outside of smooth waters or partially smooth waters or other waters more than 2 nautical miles from land.

Standard safety equipment for boats that don't require registration

Equipment Smooth waters Partially smooth waters Beyond partially smooth waters
Must carry the following equipment
EPIRB or PLB* ✔#
Lifejacket
✔ Lifejacket level 50, 100, 150, 275 or level 50 special purpose
✔ Lifejacket level 50, 100, 150, 275
✔ Lifejacket level 100, 150, 275
Signalling device if operating at between sunset and sunrise (e.g. torch, lantern, glow stick)



Should carry the following equipment
Anchor ✔ (with cable appropriate for size of vessel)  ✔ (with cable appropriate for size of vessel)
✔ (with cable appropriate for size of vessel)
Chart  
Compass  
Drinking water
Handheld electronic navigation device (if not equipped with a chart and compass)
 
V sheet


Flares (2 red hand-held and 2 orange smoke)  

Fire fighting equipment
Oars or paddles (for boats under 6m)

Pumping or bailing equipment

# Owners/masters must give each person on board information about where the safety equipment is kept. Lifejackets must be clearly visible to passengers or readily accessible and indicated by a clearly visible sign with a white background marked with the word 'lifejackets' in red letters or vice versa. 

* PLBs may used by lightweight craft operators only and only in accordance with the conditions of carriage.

# Required when operating more than 2 nautical miles outside of smooth waters or partially smooth waters or other waters more than 2 nautical miles from land.

To see the detailed list of safety equipment and exemptions for the carriage of some equipment in certain situations download the safety equipment for recreational boats and personal watercraft table.

Maintaining your safety equipment

Some safety equipment includes parts that can deteriorate over time. This lowers their usefulness or makes them unusable. The following safety equipment must be replaced or serviced by the manufacturer (or an authorised agent) by the expiry date, which must be clearly marked on the equipment: 

Equipment that cannot be serviced or no longer works must be replaced.



Last updated
20 October 2017