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29th April 2017 | Today's High Tides | 03:05 - 5.43m | 15:32 - 5.32m | Full Tide Tables

Use of Personal Water Craft (PWC) on the Rivers Crouch and Roach

This document sets out the rules and requirements for the use of Personal Water Craft on the waters within the jurisdiction of the Crouch Harbour Authority which includes all of the Rivers Crouch and Roach.
It is a condition of the issue of a PWC licence that these rules and requirements are observed.

Personal Water Craft includes jetskis, wetbikes, powerboards and all similar powered recreational water craft. This does not include waterskiing or the use of towed inflatable toys (donuts, bananas and similar) which are subject to different rules.

The rules and requirements come from the Crouch Harbour Act 1974 and the byelaws made by the Authority under that Act. Breach of the byelaws could result in prosecution and a fine of up to £2,500.

PWC Licensing

Every PWC must be licensed by CHA before it is used.
The license fee is £180.00 p.a.

A PWC License if granted by the Authority will be valid for a period of 12 months commencing 1st January and expiring 31st December. Licenses issued after 1st January are not subject to a reduction of fee for the shorter period.

To apply for a license complete the license application form and declaration and send it with your cheque for £180 and a copy of your insurance certificate to:

Crouch Harbour Authority, Harbour Office, The Quay, Burnham on Crouch, Essex, CM0 8AS. Tel 01621 783602. (Payment can be made by telephone using a credit or debit card but a license will not be issued until your application form and insurance details have been checked.)

You will be issued with a coloured annual PWC licence plaque (2017 is Blue) and also an individual adhesive number. It is a condition of licensing that the authority’s issued annual PWC license plaque and the number is displayed on the PWC at all times (– no plaque/number and you are not properly licensed , so expect to be fined.)

The license to operate a PWC may be withdrawn by CHA at any time.

Compulsory Insurance

It is a condition of issue of a licence for a PWC that insurance is carried and maintained to cover liability for damage or injury to persons or property with a limit of indemnity of not less than £2,000,000. You will be required to produce evidence of insurance when applying for or renewing the PWC licence.

Areas in which PWC may be used

The use of Personal Water Craft is not permitted at any time on the River Roach or any of its creeks.

In the River Crouch:

The East Fambridge Ski Area can be used by all PWC whether or not the driver is a member of one of the Clubs.

PWCs must not be used in any other part of the river, but PWCs may navigate directly from a launching place (or if entering the harbour from seaward) to a PWC area and to return provided:

  1. The eight knot speed limit zones within the river are strictly observed.
  2. The PWC is navigated considerately, at moderate speed, with due care and attention and in compliance with the Crouch Harbour Byelaws and the International Rules for Preventing Collisions at Sea, which apply throughout the rivers.

Bridgemarsh Island; Use of PWC (and all other types of vessel) within the creeks and saltings of Bridgemarsh Island is strictly forbidden.

Nb: The Waterski/PWC areas, also the speedlimit areas, are shown in the free illustrated ‘Guide to Rivers Crouch and Roach’

Careful Navigation

PWCs like all vessels, must not be navigated in a manner dangerous to other vessels or persons, or without due care and attention, or without reasonable consideration for other persons. This is a requirement of the Crouch Harbour Byelaws and if you do not comply with the byelaws you may be prosecuted and fined. If you are reported for breach of the byelaws your PWC licence may be revoked. Your application includes a declaration that you will comply at all times with the Crouch Harbour Byelaws and the International Rules for Preventing Collisions at Sea.

Use of PWC by Young Persons

The permission to use a PWC is strictly limited to its use by persons 18 years of age and over. Use of a PWC by a person under 18 years of age would represent a breach of the byelaws and be liable to prosecution.

Buoyancy Aids

It is a condition of the licence to use a PWC that all persons using it must wear an appropriate buoyancy aid. Wearing of protective helmets and wetsuits etc is strongly recommended.