Please select your home edition
Edition
YY.com app (top)

RYA affirms the guiding principles supporting its return to boating strategy

by Loretta Spridgeon, RYA 6 May 19:48 BST
Sunrise at sea © Two Drifters

As we near Boris Johnson's anticipated announcement this Sunday where we expect to hear the Government's plans for the easing of lockdown restrictions, the RYA is working on a range of guidance and resources to help members and the wider boating community prepare for a return to the water. These resources will ensure that boaters can return to activities on the water as quickly and safely as possible.

Since the lockdown commenced, the RYA has lobbied on behalf of its members to put forward strong case for boating to be one of the first activities that can be resumed safely within any necessary parameters for social distancing, once we start to see a relaxation of the current restrictions.

While the detail of Government plans for easing restrictions are not yet known, the RYA has outlined the following 'guiding principles' that will shape its detailed response:

  1. We will always follow Government guidance

    The COVID-19 preventative measures are vital to protecting health and wellbeing and to minimising pressure on the frontline services. We all have a role to play by following the Government guidelines.

    The RYA will provide interpretation and advice to show how the latest measures on social distancing, hygiene and travel can be applied to boating showing examples of the level of activity that each phase will allow.

    As both a national and international Association, we are mindful that Home Country Governments may issue their own phased plans and measures. Additionally, as we have seen to date, local authorities, harbour authorities or marinas may also interpret guidance differently. We will carefully review any industry specific guidance that impacts on boating activities, such as advice for the sport and hospitality sectors, as well as paying particular attention to any guidance for specific sections of our community.

    Where the application of Government guidance is unclear, we will seek clarification so that boaters and activity organisers are kept informed.

  2. We will, as a boating community, take a considerate and conservative approach

    • Considerate: be mindful of the potential impact that you could have on other water users and do not place unnecessary extra strain on the RNLI and emergency services.

      Consider the local area and whether there is a risk that you could put extra pressure on the RNLI or frontline services. For example, are you in a very remote location? Is the area very busy? Look out for others such as families on beaches or people on other boats and think about how your activity could help or hinder them. For example, windsurfers or kiteboarders who launch from the beach should give extra space to beach users. Boaters should keep an eye out for others, and be ready to assist if trouble arises.

    • Conservative: help to minimise risk by taking an extra conservative approach to your boating.

      Our guidance on safety remains unchanged: know your limits; look after yourself; keep in touch and, above all, have a plan. As we start to get back on the water, we advise boaters to take an even more conservative approach when planning to go afloat.

Sarah Treseder, RYA Chief Executive, explains: "We share our members' enthusiasm for a return to boating once we start to see a relaxation of the current restrictions. Getting afloat undoubtedly benefits both mental and physical wellbeing and we believe that with appropriate measures, a basic level of safe and responsible activity can be delivered to get our members active on the water.

"The decision to go afloat both for individuals and activity organisers should be based on a combination of self-responsibility and risk assessment. Our work with clubs, training centres and members will focus on the mitigation of COVID-19 risks to allow individuals and activity organisers to make informed decisions relating to their own interests and activities.

"We remain committed to representing the interests of the recreational boating community and we eagerly await the Government's announcement on Sunday. Our members, affiliated clubs, classes, and recognised training centres will receive a further update as soon as we have reviewed the Government's plans and their impact on boating activities," Sarah concludes.

Further COVID-19 advice for clubs, classes and training centres, as well as recreational boaters in the UK and abroad, can be found on the RYA website.

Related Articles

RYA encourages boaters to share training memories
Share your story for the chance to win a special commemorative glass This year marks the 50th anniversary of the RYA's world-leading training schemes. And to celebrate the exciting milestone, the RYA is encouraging anyone that's ever taken a course, or been impacted by RYA training in any way to share their stories. Posted on 31 May
Honor Preston Volunteer Award nominations open
Celebrating, encouraging and supporting a positive change in the attitude to diversity The RYA is delighted to introduce the brand new Honor Preston Award that will be included as part of the RYA Volunteer Awards that recognise the outstanding contributions of volunteers across the UK. Posted on 30 May
Planning for a return to racing
Club Zone discusses how sailors can satisfy their competitive nature In this episode of Club Zone we are chatting to RYA Racing Services Manager Niall McLeod and RYA Keelboat Development Manager Jack Fenwick about some suggestions on how sailors, clubs & classes can satisfy their competitive nature Posted on 28 May
Finalists chosen from 2,932 competitors
Live RYA eSailing Spring Club Championship final to be held on Saturday morning Since the RYA announced the launch of the RYA eSailing Spring Club Championship, thousands of club sailors have been taking their tactics and strategies onto the virtual waters in an attempt to represent their club in the national final. Posted on 27 May
Planning to Safely Reopen Club Buildings
This week's Club Zone Development video This week's Club Zone Development is on the topic of 'Planning to Safely Reopen Club Buildings' and features two guests from Draycote Water Sailing Club discussing how they are implementing a plan at their club. Posted on 21 May
Develop your knowledge with RYA eBooks
Exclusive 30% discount for RYA members The RYA's selection of accessible eBooks have been proving popular with locked down boaters all over the world. And with many of us now preparing for a return to boating, what better way to brush up on your knowledge before getting back out on the water? Posted on 15 May
RYA welcomes Government guidance
Enjoy the benefits of being outside, while protecting yourself and others The RYA has today welcomed Government guidance that sets out the key principles of enjoying the benefits of being outside, while protecting yourself and others from coronavirus. Posted on 13 May
RYA and RNLI pave the way
For safe return to boating Following changes in Government guidance for England, which allow people to travel to the coast and use the water, the RYA is engaging with the RNLI and representatives from the industry to help ensure a safe return to recreational boating activity. Posted on 12 May
RYA issues guidance for English Sailing Clubs
In response to Sunday's Government announcement that unlimited outdoor activity will be permitted In response to Sunday's Government announcement that unlimited outdoor activity will be permitted in England, the RYA has issued guidance for English Affiliated Clubs that are considering a safe plan to restart their boating activity. Posted on 12 May
RYA welcomes the return to boating
Boaters urged to take a considerate and cautious approach as we return to the water The RYA warmly welcomes a return to the water following the Prime Minister's announcement on Sunday during which he stated that from this Wednesday, the Government wants to encourage people to take more and even unlimited amounts of outdoor exercise. Posted on 11 May