LOCAL and holidaying boaters have learnt how to service and maintain their lifejackets so they can stay safe on the water.

Maritime Safety Victoria hosted free clinics at Rhyll on Sunday, January 17, with Boating Safety Education Officers guiding attendees through the process of inspecting their jackets and leaving people with the knowledge they need to conduct their own annual self-inspections.

Rhyll-Phillip Island Angling Club president Albert Abram said the club was trying to be a good community partner by helping to organise the event.

“We want to do whatever we can do to support education and safety for members and visitors,” he said.

Bass Coast Shire Mayor Brett Tessari was pleased with the high number of attendees and said summer was a crucial time to talk about safety on the water.

“It’s really important to just remember to wear a life jacket,” he said.

“Just take five minutes to stand back and assess the beach and the water.”

Attendees learnt inflatable lifejackets are easy to wear and comfortable but require proper maintenance to keep users afloat in an emergency.

If you own a lifejacket in Victoria, you should self-inspect it once a year and have it fully serviced by an accredited service agent every three to five years (in accordance with manufacturer’s specifications).

Attendees received a $30 voucher from San Remo’s Jim’s Bait and Tackle, which can be put towards a new lifejacket, lifejacket service kit, or other safety equipment as mandated by Victoria’s Marine Safety Regulations 2012.