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Published: 2015-10-07 00:00:00

Bar crossings can be very hazardous, even for the most experienced of boaties. The incredibly sad deaths on bars this past year are an avoidable reminder that bar crossings should only ever be tackled with the right attitude, equipment, and knowledge.

With bar crossings continuing to be one of the biggest risk issues for boaties in the Waikato, the Waikato Regional Council’s maritime team is supporting the upcoming round of Coastguard bar crossing safety courses in Raglan and Kawhia next month.

The Raglan course is on Sunday 1 November, and the Kawhia course is on Sunday 15 November.

“Raglan and Kawhia are west coast bars, with bad reputations for a reason. They can be very difficult, and if not done properly can lead to capsizing and possible fatalities and injuries,” says the council’s maritime service team leader Richard Barnett.

“We urge boaties intending to cross these bars to join in on one of the bar education days being offered by Coastguard. The time invested could equate to a life saved.”

Those interested in the Raglan course, which will run from 8.30am at the Raglan Bowling Club, corner James and Willis street, should contact Brigid Green through or 07 825 8089. The fee is $30 for those registered or $35 on the day and a lifejacket is required as there will be a trip out to the bar.

The Kawhia starts at 9am, at the Kawhia Boating and Angling Club, 124 Omimiti street. To register for this course head to or freephone 0508 RESCUE (737 283). The course fee is $30 and includes a trip across the bar in Coastguard Raglan’s boat.

Spaces are limited for both courses.

Award winning bar crossing films, which also provide general safety information, are available also at the council’s website