The Werribee Coast Guard boat is back on the water after a $70,000 winter makeover.
The boat, which had started to corrode, was taken off-duty three months ago, stripped to its bare bones, re-strengthened, and welded and fitted out with new electronics and searchlights.
The Werribee Coast Guard relied on a smaller “zodiac” boat for call-outs during the winter months while the works were taking place.
The revamp was made possible with a $50,000 state government grant, local sponsorships and donations.
Now the boat, dubbed CG10, is back on the water in time for peak boating season. It also has a new berth in Wyndham Harbour.
Flotilla commander Bruce Lawrence says the Coast Guard, which is run by volunteers, is thrilled with the upgrade.
“It’s come up very well; we’re very proud of it.”
Mr Lawrence said the Coast Guard had been involved in more than 1000 call-outs in the past decade, helping stranded boaters, conducting search and rescues, and responding to any other calamity in Port Phillip Bay.
Mr Lawrence says he’s seen it all, often involving people getting into strife by not being properly prepared, which can lead to venturing on to the water without enough fuel and getting their boat stuck on a sandbar.
He also recalled tragedies such as the one in which three men drowned in Port Phillip Bay while testing out a new boat during the 2015 Queen’s Birthday weekend.
“There were a lot of boats out [that weekend] in very rough weather … that was one of the horror ones that sticks in everyone’s mind. We’re all about safety and getting people home.”
The Werribee Coast Guard is looking for more sponsorships, including naming rights for the new boat. For more information, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
News article reprinted from: Star Weekly