New Zealand maritime safety advisors will be on deck
alongside their Cook Islands colleagues to help ensure their
tourist boats are ready for a big influx of visitors over
the next few months.
The Pacific Maritime Safety
Programme (PMSP) is sending five technical advisors to
support a safety campaign led by the Maritime Division of
the Cook Islands Ministry of Transport.
will include undertaking vessel inspections and surveys and
providing safety advice to operators and will target tourist
and charter vessels to make sure they are all in good shape
ahead of the July school holidays.
PMSP Manager David
Billington said the Cook Islands administration had been
proactive in managing their domestic fleet since COVID-19
forced the country to close its borders to
“Their team has been working hard to
ensure their domestic fleet has remained in good operating
order over the past 12-15 months,” Mr Billington
“But we know that the beginning of any season
is a good time to thoroughly check your boat, check your
gear and review your operation.
“With the bubble
opening with the Cook Islands, it’s effectively the
beginning of what could be a really bumper tourist season
– so it’s the perfect time to launch a big safety
campaign and really make sure all their vessels are in good
“We’re honoured to be invited to support
this campaign and looking forward to working alongside our
Pacific colleagues for the first time in over a
Mr Billington said the New Zealand team would
be working under direction from the Cook Islands.
Islands Secretary of Transport John Hosking said the
Maritime Division was committed to ensuring safety standards
were high across all their domestic vessels and chartered
“At the end of the day, we want everyone
to come home safely. That’s our focus and we welcome the
support from New Zealand”.
The PMSP is a Ministry of
Foreign Affairs and Trade programme, funded through New
Zealand Aid and delivered by Maritime