Suffolk Constabulary has the following safety advice regarding water safety:

  • 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.
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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 your local crime reduction officer.

For more information about the scheme, please contact your local crime reduction officer on 101 or email [email protected] or [email protected].

Please note that this is a seasonal operation.

Stolen Boats: http://stolenboats.org.uk

Project Kraken: http://www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/campaigns/project-kraken