Press Release

Virgin Islands Shipping Registry
Marine Transport
Release Date:
Wednesday, 22 May 2019 - 3:27pm

Boat owners, mariners, participants and the wider community are being asked to exercise caution and adhere to all safety measures during the Poker Run festivities of May 26.

Acting Director for the Virgin Islands Shipping Registry and Receiver of Wrecks, Captain Raman Bala said the safety of the users of the Territory’s pristine waters is of utmost importance.

Captain Bala said, “Apart from sailing and power boating, the BVI is host to various water sports activities such as swimming, snorkeling, paddle boarding, diving, surfing, kite surfing, etc. Therefore, safety measures must be strictly observed to avoid any accident or incident.”

All participants in the upcoming event are asked to operate only within the designated area during the competition. These include: Leverick Bay, Virgin Gorda; Foxy’s Taboo, Jost Van Dyke; Foxy’s Bar, Jost Van Dyke; Pirates Bight, Norman Island; Cyril B. Romney Tortola Pier Park, Road Harbour, and Tortola.

Participants should always maintain a sharp lookout for other users of the Territory’s waterways. Additionally, all boats should be fit for purpose and fitted with the necessary equipment for safe navigation.

Masters are also being reminded to always proceed at a safe speed, maintain a proper look-out and obey the Collision Regulations as well as the rules of the Poker Run competition.

Captain Bala added, “When within a harbour or anchorage, proceed at a speed not exceeding five (5) Knots; Prepare for and practice your emergency response for accidents and incidents such as man overboard, drowning, collision and serious injury etc. prior to the Poker Run; Responsibility for safe operation lies with the Master of the vessel.”

Other water users are reminded to be aware of boats going at full speed within the area of the Poker Run during the time of the races and avoid, if possible, water sport activities in the area of the event for the duration of the competition.

Persons can read more on the Virgin Islands Shipping Registry’s safety alert by visiting the registry’s page on, or use the following direct link –


Bria Smith

Information Officer II
Department of Information and Public Relations (GIS)
Telephone: 468-2747