New boat for local rescue team

The Shellharbour Marine Rescue Commander Peter Kelf, boat crew Joe Vasconcelos, Stephen Boyd and Skipper Geoff Walls are excited to take charge of their new rescue boat. Picture: GEORGIA MATTS

The Shellharbour Marine Rescue Commander Peter Kelf, boat crew Joe Vasconcelos, Stephen Boyd and Skipper Geoff Walls are excited to take charge of their new rescue boat. Picture: GEORGIA MATTS

THE new Marine Rescue unit at Shellharbour welcomed a new 10 metre-long member to the team yesterday. 

The Naiad vessel, named Shelly’s Rescue (SH30) is the newest edition at the Shellharbour marine Rescue unit, to help better its response times and sea range. The boat was built in Yamba and features state-of-the-art electronics including a night vision camera, sea map and the latest GPS navigation system. It can also travel 15 nautical miles out to sea and further if needed, with clearance from the Water Police and can travel at 40 knots, for a faster response.

Unit Commander Peter Kelf said the new boat would help the team of 35 volunteers assist people in trouble out at sea much faster and further away.

“This is a very good sea boat, they call the four wheel drive of the sea,” Mr Kelf said.

“With all the newest and latest features it’s not only great for day rescues but night as well.

“People will be very pleased with the new boat. It’s well put together and it’s a purpose-built boat built especially for search and rescue.”

Mr Kelf said the boat also gave the unit at Shellharbour the ability to assist other marine rescue teams along the coast.

“It gives us greater flexibility to provide help to other units, such as Port Kembla or Shoalhaven, when they are conducting searches,” he said.

“It carries two 400 litre fuel tanks which helps allow for a longer range and is powered by two 250 horse-power Suzuki four stroke engines.”

The boat was partially funded by NSW Marine Rescue headquarters, the sale of the old rescue boat but primarily from various fundraising events put on by the Shellharbour unit. 

Mr Kelf encouraged anyone for the community to come down and chat to the unit for any tips, water safety or to get involved. For more information go to http://www.marinerescuensw.com.au/ or phone Peter Kelf on 0447 722 667.

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