New life-saving technology will help the Warrnambool Coast Guard carry out rescues faster and keep the community safe.
The guard now has a remote-controlled motorised lifebuoy that can be directed to people who may be in trouble out in the water.
Warrnambool Coast Guard commander Allan Wood said the equipment, called Dolphin 1, will add to the local marine search and rescue capability for the coast guard flotilla.
Warrnambool Coastguard testing Dolphin 1
“A few times in past we’ve been out there in rough weather trying to get a line to people in the water by throwing a life buoy out to them, but the risk of that is you can hit them on head get or have to get so close to them in the boat it’s bloody dangerous,” he said.
“The idea of this is you attach the line to it and off it goes, if someone is stranded in the water it motors over to them. It can also get a tow line to stranded vessels.
“We’ve been testing it over the last few weekends and it works brilliantly.
“It’s brand new in Australia, so not many people have these things.”
Picture: Mark Witte
The Warrnambool Coast Guard is is one of a few marine search and rescue units that have a Dolphin, and are one of the first units in Australia to test it.
The Dolphin has two battery powered electric motors each driving a propeller, giving it both power and maneuverability.
The remote controller enables the Dolphin to operate up to a distance of 500 metres away from the coast guard vessel or from the shore line if necessary.
The Dolphin can be used to propel loads up to 150 Kg and has an endurance of up to 30 minutes on full charge.