Life jackets now compulsory for fishermen

Saturday, 4 January 2014 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The Ministry of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources has made it mandatory for all fishermen to wear life jackets when fishing in the sea. The Ministry said that the law has been enacted under the 1996 No: 02 Fisheries Act and the gazette notification on 2008.10.09. However, the boat owners have asked to discuss their problems with the authorities, a spokesman of the Ministry said. Minister of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources said that the step was taken to assure the safety of the fishermen following the deaths of a number of fishermen due to lack of safety precautions. In June last year, over 50 fishermen caught in a monsoon storm died and most of the dead were fishing in small boats without life jackets. The Minister also pointed out that the Government had provided one life jacket each to the boats and the other life jackets should be provided to the fishermen by the boat owners. According to the Ministry, 4,080 multi-day vessels and small boats are in operation in Sri Lanka.