- Abiding by the Spearfishing Code of Conduct is a condition of membership to the Australian Underwater Federation.
- The code applies to all members at all times while they are engaged in spearfishing.
- Knowledge or observation of a breach of the code should be acted on by, where practical, approaching the person concerned and informing them that you intend to report the incident.
- Breaches of the Code of Conduct should be brought to the attention of the State Secretary immediately and should be followed up in writing with full details of the incident along with any supporting evidence. The names of all witnesses to the incident should also be forwarded.
- All matters will be dealt with initially by the State Executive verifying the incident.
- In general, a first offence will result in a warning letter being issued to the persons concerned.
- A subsequent offence shall result in temporary suspension from the A.U.F. for a period of time to be determined by the State Executive.
- A third offence will result in expulsion from the A.U.F.
- If a criminal offence has been committed by a member of the A.U.F. while engaged in spearfishing, then that member will be liable to immediate expulsion from the A.U.F.
- The conclusion of any disciplinary matters dealt with by the State Executive shall be brought to the attention of the State Committee.
Code of Conduct – Ethics
This code of conduct applies to all members of the Australian Underwater Federation. It is intended to discourage certain types of unacceptable behaviour which may discredit the A.U.F. and the sport of Spearfishing. Serious cases, such as members willingly engaged in illegal activities, may result in penalties including expulsion from the A.U.F.
- Consider the safety of yourself and other people at all times.
- Know and at all times practice the A.U.F. Safety Rules and Hints.
- Respect our marine life by never taking more game than for your immediate personal needs.
- Know and at all times obey boating regulations, including:
- carrying required safety equipment
- navigating safely at all times
- Know and at all times obey Fisheries regulations including:
- size limits for certain species
- bag limits for certain species
- bans on the taking of protected species
- ban on the sale of fish by amateur fishermen
- closure of certain areas to spearfishing
- Guard our seas from law-breakers by reporting suspicious or illegal activity to the proper authorities.
- Always co-operate with regulatory authority officers performing their duty.
- Show consideration towards other water users pursuing their own recreation.
- Clean your catch at a designated cleaning area or away from the general public.
- Whenever you go diving, never leave your rubbish behind.
- Never act in a way which results in public disfavour towards our sport or our organisation.
Spearfishing Safety Rules
These Safety Rules are intended to minimise the risk of injury or mishap to divers engaged in Spearfishing. Divers are encouraged to adopt these rules without exception and to promote them amongst divers who may not be familiar with them. It is the responsibility of all A.U.F. members to make our sport as safe as possible.
While engaged in Spearfishing you should:
- Tow a safety coloured float (yellow, orange or red) with an International Code A flag (signifying diver below) displayed in a vertical position above the float.
- Attach game to the towed float so that the game is carried away from your body.
- Carry a knife that is attached to your body and which is readily accessible.
- Carry a plastic safety whistle and a reflective signal mirror.
- Wear a weight belt fitted with a single hand operated, quick release buckle.
- Never load or carry a loaded speargun out of the water.
- Ensure that speartips are suitably sheathed while not in use.
- Ensure that you are not under the influence of any drugs or medication that may impair your senses, judgement or physical ability.
- Cease diving if for any reason you are not feeling well.
- Take liquids to ensure that you do not suffer the effects of dehydration.
- Avoid hyperventilating by taking no more than 2 or 3 deep breaths before holding your breath.
- Always dive with a friend or tell someone where you will be diving and your estimated time of return.
- Obtain a current weather report for the time that you will be diving.
- Be on the alert for boat traffic and ensure that you are visible to passing vessels.