Canal & River Trust tackles ‘improper’ mooring to make waterways safer

Yesterday saw the launch of the Canal and River Trust’s new Improper Mooring process. It will be applied where a boat is moored in a way that affects safety or impedes other boaters or waterway users.

Incidents of improper mooring will be recorded by the Trust’s Licence Support Team. Initially, a letter will be sent to the boat owner highlighting the problem. The boater will also receive a booklet including extracts from the Trust’s boat licence terms & conditions, bye-laws, the Navigation Rules, and Boaters’ Handbook to help them understand how they can moor more appropriately.

If a boater does not address their inappropriate mooring, the process will allow the Trust to take action that could ultimately result in the revocation of the boater’s licence.

The charity regularly receives feedback from boaters about craft that are poorly moored, blocking facilities, or making it unsafe for boats to navigate. The Trust is addressing the problem by promoting more considerate mooring and shared use of the waterways, letting those who are moored inappropriately know there is a problem, and ultimately acting against persistent rule-breakers.

The Trust intends the new process to serve as a prompt for the boat owner to moor appropriately, and to help and educate boaters that may be new to the water or unaware of the issues caused by poor mooring.

Matthew Symonds, National Boating Manager at Canal & River Trust, says: “While the vast majority of boaters are considerate neighbours, every boater has a story to tell of a badly, or simply dangerously, moored boat. Whether it’s someone moored up for days on a water point, to boats blocking the sightlines on bends, there are many examples of poor mooring etiquette. This can at best be frustrating and, in some instances, can be dangerous.

“So, we’re going to be stepping up our efforts to contact all boats that we see moored inappropriately. Much of the time a boater may not realise that the way they’re moored may be causing a problem, and we think a polite reminder of good mooring practise will result in them moving somewhere safer, or where they won’t be affecting others.”

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This article was written and/or edited by the UK-based MIN team.

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