Media release

Otago’s new Navigation Safety Bylaw effective from today

Wednesday 1 May 2019

The new bylaw was developed in consultation with the community and approved at the 3 April council meeting. It covers maritime safety in almost all inland waters and all coastal waters out to the limit of the territorial sea of Otago.

Key features of the Bylaw include:

  • An updated and fit for purpose set of bylaws that are applicable throughout the region, and are aimed at better improving safety and maritime education in and on Otago’s waterways.
  • An update to the lifejacket bylaw.
  • A new requirement for improved communication in the Halfway Island area to improve safety in this high-risk location.

The Otago Regional Council is responsible for the regulation of ports, harbours, waters, and maritime-related activities in the Otago region under the Maritime Transport Act (1994).

ORC Harbourmaster Steve Rushbrook said he was pleased to have the bylaw in place.

“Getting our safety bylaws updated has been one of my top priorities since I took on this role, and it’s great to have this in place now,” said Mr Rushbrook.

“My preference in this area is to take an educational approach first, and this bylaw gives us a concrete point of reference to educate boaties about safe and responsible practice on the water.”

To read the Otago Regional Council Navigational Safety Bylaw 2019, visit: