Are you crossing a bar this summer?

Already this summer, our volunteers across the country have responded to a number of serious incidents at bar crossings. Boaties, if you're planning to cross a bar anywhere in New Zealand, please take five mins to watch this video and remember these key safety measures.

Before heading out:

  • Seek local advice
  • Check the weather forecast
  • Check the tide – only cross a bar at high tide.
  • Carry two forms of waterproof communication
  • Wear your lifejacket
  • File a trip report with Coastguard over VHF, *500, or the Coastguard App

Once you get to the bar:

  • Stop and observe the bar
  • Tie down any loose equipment & close all hatches
  • Brief your crew
  • Make a Bar Crossing Report with Coastguard via VHF, or call *500
  • Get a VHF & PLB in a crew member’s hand in case anything goes wrong
  • If in doubt – don’t go out
  • Once you’ve crossed, close your Bar Crossing Report with Coastguard.

If you need to scrub up on your skills, find your nearest boating course at -

Find our full boaties’ checklist and a range of how-to guides at -


For more information, contact: 
Ben Parsons 
Coastguard New Zealand Senior Communications Advisor 
[email protected]

Thanks to our life-saving partners:
  • Auckland Council
  • Northland Regional Council
  • Waikato Regional Council
  • Hutchwilco
  • Marine Deals
  • Tower
  • Kordia
  • Hyundai
  • Line7
  • Century Batteries
  • Half Moon Bay
  • NZCT
  • Lotteries Grants Board
  • Lion Foundation
  • Pub Charity