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Free advice about lifejackets at boat ramp

The mobile van will provide free advice about modern life jackets and will exchange old lifejackets for new at a discounted price in Woy Woy on Sunday, January 22.

State Member for Terrigal, Mr Adam Crouch, said the the Old4New van will be located at the Woy Woy boat ramp from 2pm to 5pm on the day.

Mr Crouch said trained staff would provide advice on choosing the right lifejacket for height, weight, ability and water activity, and tips on lifejacket care and service.

"This is Old4New's fourth season and the team is as keen as ever to get amongst our boating communities to spread the word about choosing the right lifejacket for your height, weight, ability and water activity," said Mr Crouch.

"It's important to take good care of your lifejacket and to care and service them to ensure they can do their job effectively if they're needed," he said.

"In NSW, it's the law to service your inflatable lifejacket once a year or in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions, so this is an excellent opportunity to understand exactly what you need to do to make sure your lifejacket always keeps you safe."

The Old4New van's visit to the Central Coast coincides with the Royal Life Saving Society's latest regional drowning report, highlighting the importance of safety for all water enthusiasts, regardless of age and experience.

According to the report, 29 people drowned in the Central Coast and Hunter region waterways between 2005 and 2015, and more than half of these people were not wearing a lifejacket.

"These are not just numbers, each represents a parent, child, uncle, aunty or friend lost participating in an activity that is meant to be enjoyable and that everyone should come home safely from doing" Mr Crouch said.

"This report is a timely reminder for us all to think about how we can protect ourselves out on the water so that we can have a great day out on the water and make it back home to the people we love.

"Wearing a lifejacket is by far the most effective way to prevent drowning while boating, and with new, modern designs, lifejackets are less bulky and more comfortable to wear so there's no good reason for not chucking one on."

The Old4New exchange is part of a wider Transport for NSW program which has helped support an increase in lifejacket wear rates and achieved a decrease in boating fatalities statewide.

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