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Coastguard Offers its courses in Mandarin

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Mandarin speakers can now access Coastguard Northern Region's valuable Marine VHF Radio and Day Skippers courses which will run in partnership with WaterSafe Auckland and ACC.

The courses, which start from November 5, help to address wider issues such as marine radio usage, maritime rules and regulations, emergency procedures, navigation techniques and will also cover the legal responsibilities of the skipper.

Darren Arthur, Education Manager for Coastguard's Northern Region, says the new initiative provides the charity with a great opportunity to target a new demographic and communicate Coastguard's safety messages as the charity saving lives at sea.

"Safety is paramount when it comes to enjoying your time on the water. The VHF Marine Radio and Day Skipper courses can now help to enhance the boating and safety knowledge of boaties from the asian community in time for the start of the summer boating season."

According to Coastguard, boating incidents among the Chinese and Asian communities are under-reported due to the language barrier and a lack of knowledge about our rescue services and how to report an emergency.

"In an effort to ensure that the courses are as comprehensible as possible, our boating education manuals will be translated and a tutor will conduct the lessons in Mandarin. The Marine VHF Radio course will encourage participants to make all distress calls in English."

"We are hopeful that offering these courses in Mandarin will help bridge the language barrier and let participants feel confident enough to call Coastguard if trouble strikes," says Mr Arthur.

Research collated by WaterSafe Auckland over the 2010-2011 summer period regarding water activity in the Asian community showed that 69 percent of those who immigrated to New Zealand have increased their aquatic recreation in New Zealand compared to when living in their homeland.

"It's great to see that those new to our country are enjoying our harbours, lakes and waterways and we hope that this while this trend continues to grow, so too does an understanding within the Asian community around boating safety and its importance, " says Mr Arthur.

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