Row breaks out over 'payment in kind' from passengers on harbour cruise

The skipper of Earthrace, the world-record breaking round the world powerboat has been threatened with a £50,000 fine and a ban on mooring in the UK, for taking paying passengers without a license.

A local pleasure boat owner reported the vessel to the Torquay harbour master stating that Earthrace’s skipper was accepting sandwiches in return for taking tourists on short rides aboard the 78ft wave-piercing trimaran.

The MCA warned him that accepting ‘payment in kind’ of any sort for taking out passengers is illegal without a passenger certificate.

New Zealander Pete Bethune, Earthrace’s skipper, told a local paper: ‘Health and safety in this country is sort of out of control.’