Ocean Reef Sea Sports Club resumed sailing in Ocean Reef Marina

Ocean Reef Sea Sports Club resumed sailing in Ocean Reef Marina

SAILORS retrospectively agreed to resume sailing at Ocean Reef last week after safety concerns suspended the sport last month.

Members of Ocean Reef Sea Sports Club’s sailing section officially decided on October 15 to resume using the marina, having already agreed by email to sail on the club’s October 12 open day.

The club cancelled its final winter race after experienced yachtsman Ken Gardner’s boat Safarri capsized in the shallow entry to the marina in early September.

Sailing rear commodore Geoff James said they decided to resume sailing this month because a solar-powered hazard beacon allowed them to sail on the starboard side.

‘That makes it legal for us to go around it,’ he said.

On October 12, the club held a pirate-themed open day, with crews of yachts and power boats dressing up themselves and their vessels.

The department plans to dredge the entry to the harbour in November, but Mr James said the club would lobby to get the harbour properly dredged.

‘Originally the harbour was 2.2m deep ” it has slowly silted up,’ he said.

‘Now it is becoming almost unusable for deep-keeled yachts.

‘Some of the sailors are not going to sail until the harbour is dredged.’

Mr James said the shallow entry also created hazardous waves, as seen the day Mr Gardner’s yacht capsized.

As reported in the Weekender last month, four sailors on board credited their life jackets as lifesavers when they were thrown into the water.