Boating safety officers will return to Lake Macquarie this weekend as part of a statewide crackdown on boat safety laws relating to towing, speeding and wash.

Operation Safety First was rolled out on all NSW waterways by Roads and Maritime Services last weekend and will continue until Sunday, February 25.

RMS executive director maritime, Angus Mitchell, said this time of the year was popular for water skiing, wakeboarding, kneeboarding and tubing across NSW, so it was crucial safety came first for all involved.

“There are a few absolute basics when it comes to towing, such as always ensuring anyone being towed is wearing a lifejacket, the observer is fully aware of their responsibilities and, above all, the skipper is always responsible for all personnel,” he said.

“The vessel must have a minimum crew of two – the person driving and an observer who sits facing the direction of the person being towed to provide any communication, via standard hand signals, about what is going on in the water to the driver.”

It’s understood that over the first weekend of the operation, boating safety officers concentrated their efforts on educating boaters.

This weekend, boaters who breach regulations can expect on-the-spot fines.