MSQ issues Scariff Boat recall

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Customers to be contacted over Australian Builders Plate irregularities.

Maritime Safety Queensland (MSQ) has asked Queensland boat importer, Scariff Boats, to contact more than 40 customers whose boats may be fitted with incorrect Australian Builders Plates (ABPs). The irregularities were discovered during an inspection of plates by MSQ officials at a boat show last year.

Maritime Safety Queensland acting general manager, Captain Glenn Hale, said the inspected boats had incorrect or missing information about the number of passengers they could safely carry.

“They found the Australian Builders Plates, which are required by law to be attached to vessels, in some cases allowed for more than twice the normal maximum loading weight for boats of that size,” he said.

“This could easily give owners the wrong impression they were able to carry considerably more people on board than was safely allowed with potentially disastrous consequences.

“Maritime Safety Queensland has entered into a formal undertaking with Scarrif Boats requiring them to make every effort to contact the boat owners and let them know their builder’s plates are incorrect and must be changed.

“This is an extremely serious oversight and Maritime Safety Queensland has made it clear to the company failure to correct this issue could lead to legal action.

“They will also require Scariff Boats to implement a quality assurance system to ensure all current and future imported boats offered for sale comply with the ABP requirements.

“Anyone owning a Scariff boat should get in touch with the company to arrange a review of their boat and its ABP.”

“Maritime Safety Queensland is also undertaking a wider review of vessel manufacturers and sellers to ensure no similar breaches are occurring in the industry,” said Captain Hale.

The action against Scariff Boats comes in the wake of an inspection of ABPs carried out during the Brisbane Boat Show last year and an increased focus on ABP compliance from maritime safety authorities around the country.

In Victoria, Maritime Safety Victoria (MSV) has announced it is also carrying out an inspection program of ABP compliance including looking at the methods of calculating the correct loading and engine capacities. The program will continue until May 2019.

“Where there is reason to believe that requirements are not being met, manufacturers may be asked to provide copies of calculations and test reports which support the listed values,” said Martin Jaggs, manager, maritime technical services.

“Non-compliance with the ABP requirements may result in regulatory action, including the use of improvement and prohibition notices.”

MSQ said anybody with concerns about a Scariff boat should contact the company at or call 0410 651 000 or 07 3556 3480.

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