A boat user in Falmouth has had to pay more than £500 for failing to display navigation lights while at sea at night.

Falmouth Harbour Commissioners, which is responsible for regulating and managing safety in and around Falmouth Harbour waters, brought the case to court after the unlit RIB (Rigid Inflatable Boat) was intercepted by their patrol vessel Killigrew.

Truro Magistrates court imposed a conditional discharge for six months and ordered the defendant to pay costs of £500 as well as a surcharge of £15.

Hharbour master, Mark Sansom, said: “As a statutory harbour authority, Falmouth Harbour Commissioners has a duty to regulate navigation within the harbour and safety is our number one priority. We undertake regular patrols and use our powers to prosecute offenders where this is deemed to be in the public interest.”

Mark added: “Displaying navigation lights whilst underway at night is a legal requirement and is an essential safety precaution –we hope this case will make people think twice before taking risks with their own safety and that of others. We have been involved in an information campaign for some years but it is apparent that enforcement action is necessary in order to get the message across.”

Falmouth Harbour Commissioners has recently invested in a new, lower maintenance buoy to replace one of the pre-war riveted steel buoys in Carrick Roads. The new buoy from Hydrosphere UK Ltd is the first of seven to be replaced over the next few years