Average activity 2015

Hi all

Our president Bob did some number crunching last week and it turns out we averaged a call out and response for assistance 2.36 days per week last year (I imagine these are mostly weekends, and with larger numbers in warmer months). Great work by the HRR crew and really gratifying to know how busy we were helping visitors and residence on the lower Hawkesbury River.


Community is what it’s all about

Back on the 29th December VRA Hawkesbury members, Al and Hil were heading home across the river at about 2230 in their personal vessel when they saw a speed boat just south of Dangar Island, in the flats, circling as they do when they’ve lost a crew. Another larger vessel was holding off at a safe distance near the cardinal marker, holding a spotlight on it to identify the hazard.
While Al and Hil were finding out the issue with the larger vessel, the speedboat ran out of fuel. Al and Hil moved closer in, calling for anyone in the water but there was no one near the speedboat. Al and Hil identified themselves as VRA Hawkesbury then headed home to transfer onto the Spirit of Brooklyn and it’s strong light to assist looking for people in the water. At this point the original vessel holding watch radioed the SoB that the speed boats occupants were picked up out of the water further south at Dead Horse Bay. Their calls for help from in the water was heard by someone on a barge there who got out to immediately help them.
All vessels met near the cardinal marker to check the speedboat occupants were accounted for and free of injury and to discuss retrieval of the speed boat. The individual who picked up the occupants was happy to keep them onboard and to take them to their boat, then drop them at Parsley Bay. SoB supervised and maintained radio standby if further issues arose. (A concerned relative was on another vessel down river so communications were delivered by SoB).
All occupants and their vessel were safely delivered to Parsley Bay with a final check for safety by VRA Hawkesbury.
Many many thanks to the large vessel who kept watch on the hazard and also to the barge guy for his quick and selfless actions with assisting the guys and then going into quite shallow water to get their boat.
It’s this kind of community spirit that makes a big difference on the water.

Connectivity issues

Hi folks

Many apologies to those of you contacting us yesterday, we had some problems with our mobile phone picking up the base phone redirects.

All is resolved and better still, we have a new mobile with specific regional coverage for those tricky inlets we loose reception in.

Don’t forget you can also reach us on public radio channels which are monitored 24 hours, 7 days.

  • 16 [VHF]
  • 88 [27Mhz]
  • 2524 [HF]

If you are having a medical emergency please call 000. We can help with a patient transfer to meet your ambulance if one is needed (depending on the nature of the problem) or follow the advise of the emergency operator. Marine Rescue and the Water Police are also monitoring radios and calls so you’ll get help:)




HRR in the local paper

Our boat master had a great piece in the Hornsby Advocate about boats ignoring speed and no wash zones. Read it here.

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As we all know, Al is the HRR Boat Master but the paper decided to name him the “Rescue Chief”.

SPEEDING boat owners should know better, says Hawkesbury River Rescue boat master Alan Cinis.

He said drivers regularly ignored the four-knot now-ash zones along the river, putting people at risk.

“There are a lot of people who deliberately disobey the speed limit because they have experience and are working,” he said.

“I have had situations where I’ve towed a broken vessel and there are speeding vessels causing a lot of wake. It can cause lines to be snapped or damage to their boats.”

Mr Cinis said a woman with a dog in her boat nearly capsized because of the wash from a speeding boat and boats attached to pontoons were damaged from speeding boats’ wash.

A police spokeswoman said action would be taken against any boat drivers found not to be complying with speed limits, creating excessive wash and not carrying all specified safety equipment, including life jackets.

Membership renewal 2015-16

Hi River Dwellers and visitors!

Thank you for your support for the financial year 2014-15.

** It’s time for membership renewals **

As we receive no government subsidies or assistance, your membership fees along with donations keep the only 24 hour, 7 day a week assist and rescue service running on the lower Hawkesbury River.

Fees and payment options are our blog at the link below, thanks for your support in helping us to keep running another year.


Report from the Bridge no. 4

Report from Bob Brownrigg, HRR President

The Spirit of Brooklyn was involved in the rail bridge inspection by State Rail as a safety boat and was an outstanding success. A very well done to our volunteer crews who demonstrated excellent seamanship in a professional manner.

June also saw our newer members attending the marine radio course went off quite well 100% success in results. We now have 6 more members with Marine Radio Operator qualifications.

Boat Master, Alan Cinis and squad members Warren Illes and Rod Wong have been running several weekends of working bees on the Spirit of Brooklyn. Rod totally rewired the electrics including replacing antennas.

And finally the Spirit fo Brooklyn was passed for survey by the RMS.