Consultation planned on 'dangerous' jet skiers as Sunderland chiefs report rise in public complaints

Wearsiders are being asked for their views on extra powers to tackle ‘dangerous’ jet skiers after a rise in complaints.

Tuesday, 7th September 2021, 11:33 am
A file picture of a jet-skier. Sunderland City Council said it has seen a rise in public complaints over jet-skis being used irresponsibly in the last 18 months

Now Sunderland City Council is going out to consultation on plans to add the anti-social use of jet skis, jet bikes and water scooters to its existing Public Space(s) Protection Order (PSPO) which was put in place to tackle a range of issues around anti social behaviour.

Councillor Claire Rowntree, deputy leader of Sunderland City Council, said: "We're continuing to see a few thoughtless individuals putting swimmers, non-motorised craft, pleasure boats and even shipping at risk through their irresponsible use of jet skis.

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“That's why the Harbour Master took the unusual step of issuing a direction under statutory powers last summer, in effect banning jet skis from approaching within 200 metres of the prevailing tide line off Harbour Beach and between Souter Point and Ryhope Dene.

"This was introduced to protect beach users, swimmers and others along with a blanket 6-knot speed limit on the river and in the docks.

"However we're continuing to receive complaints from members of the public. So we're looking to extend the existing public spaces protection order to cover the measures contained in the direction to give us more powers to take action against anyone flouting the rules or using a jet ski in a dangerous manner."

She added: "We really want to hear what our residents think of these plans and I'd encourage everyone to take part in the online consultation which begins today.”

PSPO powers are used across the city to tackle and manage a range of issues, including summer dog exclusion zones on Sunderland beaches.

To take part in the jet-ski consultation, which runs until midnight on Tuesday 19 October, please visit: https://www.sunderland.gov.uk/consultation

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