The pupils are constructing a vaka at school that is ready to be unveiled next week. Teacher Christina Ganivatu says before the vaka is launched, it is important that water and boat safety concerns are addressed to ensure the students are aware and safe in and on the water.
Josh Utanga, an Australian and New Zealand-qualified life saver, gave advice and instructions on how to read water conditions.
His advice included:
• Assess the sun - look at the sun conditions, wear sunscreen and a hat
• Assess the water – wear appropriate swim wear (do not wear jeans when swimming), look at the marine life - coral, jelly fish and stone fish
• Identify the water current - the colour, criss-crossing of the waves; take note of the passageways – no waves breaking over the reef indicates a passage. When stuck in a passage do not panic, but swim off to the side.
The students also received a boat safety lesson from harbour master John Jessie last week.