Wave measuring buoys banged up by errant boaties

The state government is warning boaties not to go near its wave monitoring buoys after accidents with the devices.

BANGED UP: A damaged wave measuring buoy.

BANGED UP: A damaged wave measuring buoy.

Acting Science Minister Coralee O’Rourke said there had been instances over the past few years where boats had collided with the bright yellow buoys, causing significant damage.

“In one incident, a boat unknowingly dragged a buoy back to shore,” she said.

“The skipper didn’t realise until he docked. He thought the drag was due to an engine issue.

“That’s why we’re reminding boaties to give our buoys a wide berth. Each time a buoy is damaged it has to be repaired and when they’re out of action we’re left blind.”

EASILY MISSED: A buoy afloat off the Gold Coast. Keep an eye out for them is the warning.

EASILY MISSED: A buoy afloat off the Gold Coast. Keep an eye out for them is the warning.

State government scientists use wave monitoring buoys, dotted along the Queensland coast, to continuously measure the height, direction and period of waves.

The buoys provide information to surfers, divers, lifesavers, fishermen and boat operators.

The data collected is also used in coastal management and engineering, as well as for weather forecasting and monitoring, and assessing storm erosion and storm surges.

Environment Department scientist John Ryan said the buoys played a vital role in helping protect lives and property .

“These aren’t just normal buoys, they are high-tech, with very sensitive equipment on board. Any disturbance or interference can have a big impact,” Mr Ryan said.

“That’s why we ask that you don’t use them as moorings. Don’t anchor too close to them. And avoid fishing around them too as we don’t want fishing tackle fouling them up.”

For more information visit qld.gov.au/waves and qld.gov.au/transport/boating/notices/notices-all-regions