Norfolk Constabulary has the following safety advice regarding water safety:
- Do not swim in the Broads, regardless of the weather.
- Wear your lifejacket / buoyancy aid at all times whilst on the boat or near the water’s edge.
- Never enter the water to get someone out.
- Keep an eye on everyone on board, particularly children, and avoid sitting on the front of the boat.
- Do not use disposable barbecues on the vessel.
- Do not navigate at night without lights fitted.
- Keep a good lookout for overhead power cables.
- Keep the boat in good order - trailing ropes can trip or tangle and sometimes get caught around the propeller.
- Pay attention to speed limits and observe all navigational markers to avoid being stranded on mud banks or in shallow tidal water.
- Always moor up against the tide or current. Avoid rocking the boat by jumping or running on or off and avoid climbing on the cabin roof.
- Alcohol and water can be a dangerous mix. The risk of falling into the water increases with alcohol consumption. Remember, it is illegal to navigate a vessel under the influence of drink or drugs and there are fines for those that do.
- Be courteous to others. Sailing boats have the right of way and can be difficult to manoeuvre so slow down and keep to the right hand side. Give moored boats, small boats and anglers plenty of space and reduce your speed and wash. Boats don’t have brakes - they take time to slow down and stop, so think ahead.
- Keep all people inside whilst going under bridges and mind your heads. You are advised to use the bridge pilot provided at Potter Heigham and Wroxham. Most hire companies require this.
- When crossing Breydon Water always stay within the posts. The water is shallow outside the posted channel and you may become grounded in the mud. Try to do so at slack, low water when the current is a lot weaker and there is more room under the bridges. (Check the tide table to find out when low or slack water is).
- When crossing Oulton Broad during a powerboat race, stay in the designated area and follow any directions given by the officials.
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Norfolk is home to vast waterways and the role of the BroadsBeat team is to ensure safety and security on the Broads.
The Broadsbeat team consists of:
- one full time officer, who is the beat manager for the Norfolk Broads and works exclusively on the scheme all year round
- a seasonal beat manager, who works from April until October
- a reserve officer
- a PCSO
- several officers from the Special Constabulary
- overseeing the team is Sergeant Rutter and Inspector Beard.
Broads Beat officers can be contacted to help in a range of incidents including:
- missing people
- potential drowning
- football matches
- firearms deployments
- anti-social behaviour
They are also available to offer crime prevention advice and attend many of the county's boat shows, jumbles, regattas, races and marine related festivals.
To contact the team call 101 or email [email protected]
Outboard Engines are particularly vulnerable pieces of equipment and as such Norfolk Constabulary with partner agencies are giving boat owners/users the opportunity to purchase outboard engine covers that replace the top plastic cowling of your engine, thus making th engine far less attractive to would be thieves.
The covers have the Norfolk Police logo stamped on them and are a great deterrent as the thief would have to replace the cowling to your engine before it can be sold on.
Engine covers are available in three sizes to fit most outboard engines:
And can be purchased from the attached list of locations:
Please make cheques payable to Norfolk Constabulary. For more information on this scheme please contact us on 101 or at [email protected]
Follow @BroadsBeat on Twitter to keep informed on the day to day activities of the Broadsbeat team.
Boatshield is a joint Norfolk and Suffolk initiative to tackle crime on and around the waterways of the two counties.
If you’re a boat owner and are serious about security, follow the advice provided by Boatshield so you can reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim of crime.
You can also join our rapidly growing network to share information and receive alerts about crime on the Broads and around our coastal areas.
The main aims of the scheme are:
- to reduce incidents of boat crime and associated theft by encouraging members to improve security
- to increase detection in marine crime
- to gather intelligence from members via reports of suspicious activity
- to improve relations between the police and the boating community
- to create information points where members can pick up expert help and advice to improve security.
We would encourage you to clearly display the Boatshield sticker on your boat to ensure that thieves know that you have taken your boat’s security seriously. These are available at many of the outlets around the Broads or from the BroadsBeat team.
Alternatively, you can contact BroadsBeat at: [email protected] or dial 101.
Please note that this is a seasonal operation.