31 Aug 2011

Skipper fined for ignoring safety rules

5:48 am on 31 August 2011

A boatie has been ordered to pay more than $5000 in fines and costsfor sailing into the path of a ferry on the Hauraki Gulf.

Maritime New Zealand says the penalty reflects the seriousness of Melville John Bolton's offending.

It says in March 2009, he ignored warning horns from the Waiheke to Auckland ferry and kept sailing in a direction that forced the ferry to take evasive action.

Maritime New Zealand says Mr Bolton, 73, admitted he had deliberately ignored the maritime collision prevention rules and had assumed the ferry would alter its course to port.

Bolton was sentenced in the Auckland District Court on Monday and ordered to pay $4000 fine and $1356 costs.

He was convicted in January on a charge of operating a vessel in a manner causing unnecessary danger or risk.