Wednesday, 8 February 2023


Jetski regulation

Jetski regulation

Sam GROTH (Nepean) (19:27): (29) My adjournment matter is for the Minister for Outdoor Recreation and pertains to the growing issue of jetskis and their impact on our coastal communities. The action I seek is for further enforcement and regulatory reform on the issue. Jetskis are a popular form of recreation, and there is no suggestion that they should be banned. However, the improper use of these vehicles is having negative consequences on local residents, beachgoers and visitors not just in Nepean but right across Port Phillip.

I am here today to bring to the attention of the minister the fact that the regulations surrounding jetskis are not being properly enforced and in many cases do not go far enough to be effective. Despite the existence of regulations governing the use of jetskis, many operators are disregarding these rules and putting the safety of others at risk. The lack of enforcement is leading to increasing concerns about the impact of jetskis across the peninsula and other hotspots. In spite of the 5-knot rule and other governing regulations, the high speeds and proximity to the beach at which jetskis operate can pose a danger to other watercraft and beachgoers, including swimmers and children. The reckless behaviour of some jetski operators is putting the safety of my constituents at risk, and there is a demonstrated history of serious accidents. This is unacceptable, and it is time for the government to take action to protect the safety of our local residents and visitors.

The solution to these problems lies in the enforcement of existing regulations and ensuring there are sufficient deterrents in place to limit violations. The government needs to better resource the beaches with an increased police presence as, just like on the roads, people are less inclined to break the law when there is a risk of them being caught. The increase in jetskis is putting a huge risk to families and beachgoers using our beaches, and despite years of asking for change, bayside councils are being ignored by the state government. My community of Nepean deserves to feel safe when they go to swim at Port Phillip. Mixing jetskis and families on the beach is a recipe for disaster. Separation of the two activities needs to be addressed and separate PWC access channels implemented. The government must step up and ensure that regulations governing the use of jetskis are properly enforced and appropriately robust. This will require a coordinated effort between the relevant agencies to monitor and enforce the regulations and to take action against those who are disregarding the rules. The proposal to link boat and drivers licences with demerit points for jetski users speeding or ignoring the 5-knot zones must be seriously considered by this government.

In conclusion, I believe it is imperative that we take action to address the improper use of jetskis and engage in a meaningful dialogue around how we can improve the enforcement and regulatory landscape. I therefore call on the government to take swift action to increase enforcement of the current regulations and to begin the process of instigating reforms to ensure stricter rules are applied in the future.