50 meter advice
ive spent a few hours on the net and cant seem to really find a concrete answer. Yesturday a mate and I went for a Dive in Lonreach bay, in the interst of not dropping anchor on the reef and killing hte joint we droped on the sand a little further out. plan was to follow the anchor chain and we wwould end up at the reef, look around within close proximity of the anchor and return underwater to the boat. this was all in 8-12 meters so more than deep enough. Anway on our return my Deck Biatch mentioned fisheries had come over and mentioned we were 250+ meteres from our dive flag. when we were back onboard they retuend with the same story (although it was now over 400 meter.)
we were trying to do the right thing and not drop on reef, we had a flag up, we had a person onboard still. now i can see their point with about 1000 boats zig zaging all over the place around rotto, but i cant find anythign about being able to fine me $200 for breachign the 50 meter perimiter. i do know as skippers your 'supposed' to stay outside of hte 50 meter perimiter, however as a diver if we do that i'll never see anything. Plus, a fine really? from fisheries? i do have my dive ticket (got it about 15 years ago) and apparently i should know this and its a fineable offence?
im interested in any online documentation to back this up, as most of my dives are dropping the anchor in sand more than 50 meters from our intended dive site. i'll happily stand corrected, but i have my doubts, and can fisheries really hand out such fines? isnt that water police job?
thanks in advance