CODE OF CONDUCT
The River is navigable from Lough Neagh to the sea. There are 5 locks along the river manned by Lock-keepers who are on duty from 8.00am to 6.00pm. Pleasure craft are charged £1.00 for each lock passage. As far as practicable the river is maintained at a minimum depth of 5' but owners with a draught of more than 3'3" who are not familiar with the river are adviced to contact Rivers Agency (Phone: 028 7034 2357).
Information on locks, water levels etc can be obtained from the same number.
Note: The International Regulations for the Prevention of Collision at Sea apply on this Waterway
BASIC RULES OF NAVIGATION
Keep to the right of the channel
Keep well clear when passing or overtaking.
Make your intentions clear by early and distinct action.
Give way to craft converging from the right.
Give way to craft going downstream at bridges and channels.
Give way to bigger, less manoeuvrable craft.
Power gives way to sail, oar and paddle.
Do not cross the bows of oncoming craft.
All craft should take care approaching locks and weirs, especially when the river is in flood.
CONDUCT ON THE RIVER
The river is used by cruising boats, fishermen, canoeists, water-skiers and others. To ensure that everyone can safely enjoy the river, please observe the following General Code of Conduct:-
General Code of Conduct
Respect other river users.
Slow down when passing small craft and boats at jetties and slipways.
Keep wash and wake to a minimum.
Wear a buoyancy aid appropriate to activity.
Use a kill cord/cut-out switch on sports boats.
When skiing, have an observer or wing mirror.
Only ski in ski zones.
Ringoes and biscuits should be used in ski zones only at 20mph maximum with a rope no longer than 10 metres.
Avoid damaging banks, vegetation and disturbing wildlife.
Do not pollute the river with any kind of waste.
Give due respect to others engaged in competitions.
Slow down and keep clear of anglers and wading fishermen.
Respect all designated zones.
POWERED WATERSPORTS ACTIVITIES
Powered watersports activity (speedboating, water-skiing and jet-skiing) is traditionally enjoyed on the river but participants have to be especially careful to observe safe practice and avoid conflict with other river users. Powerboaters using public slipways are expected to observe the following conditions of use:-
Conditions of Use at Council-Controlled Slips
It is a condition of use that all users of powered craft launching from Council slips should register with the Council, carry third party insurance, display a registration number on both sides of the craft and adhere to codes of good practice provided for the Lower Bann.
More detailed information on watersports zones and local conditions of use is available at slipways and from the phone numbers shown at each side.
MAPS AND CHARTS
The Lower Bann is covered by three Ordnance Survey maps at 1 in 50,000 scale. These are:
number 14 (Lough Neagh to Portglenone)
number 8 (Portglenone to Castleroe) and
number 4 (Castleroe to the sea)
The Admiralty Chart covering the Bann Estuary is number 2499
The Admiralty Chart covering Lough Neagh is number 2163