River City Women’s Rowing Club

Incorporation number IA 35586

Rules of the club (Updated 2020)

The River City Women’s Rowing Club (RCWRC) is an incorporated recreational rowing club based at the Somerville House Water sports Complex. The club has a contractual arrangement with the Somerville School which dictates the terms and conditions of the use of the facilities.

Members are registered with Rowing Queensland and are required to pay insurance to cover them for public liability. https://welcome.willis.com/rowing/default.aspx

General business
  • Club meetings and election of office bearers follow the rules of an incorporated association defined in the Associations Incorporation Act 1981.
  • AGMs and election of office bearers are held in May each year.
  • Categories of membership include; Full fee paying member, competitive or non-competitive; Learn to row for 3 months; Coach; Cox and Boatman
  • Membership fees are determined by the committee by December each year.
  • Membership renewal needs to be paid by January each year
  • Pro rata membership is available for June on wards.
Use of facilities
  • Use of boats, oars, coaching equipment and shed facilities will be dictated by the RCWRC contract with Somerville. This will be reviewed each year and communicated to the club members by the committee.
  • A roster system for use of boats will be generally used for boat allocation, a copy of which will be given to the Director of rowing of Somerville.
  • A list of club members will be given to the director of rowing of Somerville.
  • Only people who are paid up members will be able to use the clubs facilities.

Our club members must adhere to the code of conduct for the Brisbane River


Points of note;

Cross the river shortest route possible

Passive craft need to have all round visible white flashing light in low light conditions

Passive craft should not go out in fog when visibility is less than 1000m

Ferry terminals- Passive craft have to stop and wait if a ferry is within 100m radius of a terminal

Passive craft should not use middle third of river unless crossing the river.

Be aware of the general boating rules for use of a water way. In particular;

Bow side should be closest to bank

Slower boats and stopping boats should be close to bank.

Do not stop in congested areas.

Marker buoys;

Going upstream the Red markers should be on the port, cox’s left or stroke side. (any red port left coming in and going up) Downstream they should be on cox’s right,   bow side. Generally, however,  most rowers row between the red marker and the bank at the Eleanor Schonell Bridge going downstream.

Likewise the green markers should be on bow side going upstream  but rowers tend to row between the green marker and the bank just upstream from the Somerville pontoon. Obviously not wise for larger vessels.


Yellow markers are hazard markers


Before sunrise up until when visibility is adequate rowing boats need to have lights. They need to be bow and stern white flashing lights to be seen from 360 degrees in total.

The boat must also have an additional form of lighting that can be used to attract attention such as a torch.

Below is the link to Rowing Queensland web page covering lighting and incident reporting.


Additional rules for our club regarding safety.

  1. Be aware of hazardous river conditions. Rowing Queensland and BCC will issue warnings when they deem it unsafe to go out due to a flooding river or obstacle hazards. Our club will adhere to these warnings. We may issue our own under certain circumstances.
  2. Leave the pontoon with the boat going down stream. If the current is coming in strongly then it may be better to leave the pontoon with the current as long as there is no likely hood of collision with oncoming boats. Cross the river as quickly as possible if rowing upstream.
  3. Return to the pontoon against the tide. Take note of what the tide is doing before you leave and have a plan in mind for your return. You should not row up more than about 100 on the wrong side of the river if the tide is going out when approaching the pontoon.
  4. Be aware of your own safety. You must be able to swim 100m in whatever you are wearing at the time. Do not row if you are unwell. Do not go out by yourself if no one else is around.
  5. Cox is in charge when the boat is on the water.
  6. If no cox then bow person is responsible for looking out for hazards
  7. Off the water the stroke is in charge of how the boat is handled.
  8. Be aware of back safety and lifting together when lifting boats.
  9. Take note of the pontoon condition it can be slippery.
Looking after the boats

Everyone needs to take due care when handling club equipment. The boats we use are covered by Somerville insurance for loss or damage. However there is an excess and the club will bear the cost of this if a boat needs repair. If it is due to negligence then the people involved may bear this cost.

Be careful not to bump the fin when putting the boat in or out of the water or putting it on the stretchers. If the fin is bumped make sure it is still in place before going out.

Storage of boats  will be in designated places in the shed, bow ball in shed first. Boats will need to be washed inside and out before being put back in the shed.

Wear and tear will occur. Please let the committee know as soon as possible if anything is broken.

Oar blades wear away when scrapped on the pontoon. It is better that the spoon is face down on the pontoon so that the end of the blade is worn not the part where the spoon inserts into the shaft. Wash the oar handles in particular with soapy water then rinse.

Incidents on the river

All incidents will need to be reported to the safety officer of RCWRC who will also notify Rowing Queensland


Serious incidents involving injury or death will need to be reported to the water police on 3895 0333

An incident report form will need to be filled out


Updated by Lorraine Robinson, President of RCWRC March 2020