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Tourism Industry Association New Zealand Chief Executive Martin Snedden says yesterday’s launch of the new mandatory driver licence for commercial jet boat drivers operating on rivers is a mark of the professionalism and maturity of the sector.

He congratulated the Commercial Jet Boat Association on the introduction of the licence, and says it reinforces the sector’s strong commitment to visitor safety and satisfaction.

The licence scheme has been brought to life after years of hard work by the Commercial Jet Boat Association, Maritime New Zealand and TIA, which Mr Snedden says has supported the move since it was first proposed.

Jerry Hohneck, Commercial Jet Boat Association President, says the new licence represents a benchmark in jet boating, not just in New Zealand, but globally.

“Commercial jet boat drivers in this country set extremely high standards when it comes to safety and risk management, and the new licence is part of our commitment to continual improvement in this area.”

He believes it will also up the profile of jet boat drivers who give thousands of visitors annually a thrilling and memorable experience on New Zealand’s iconic rivers.

“It is critical the ‘adventure’ remains in adventure tourism, but the industry has a responsibility to ensure that these experiences are being offered within a robust safety framework,” says Mr Snedden.

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