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Buoy Selection Guide


Marker buoys in sea 


There are two systems applying for Australian waters. One for ports and coastal waters which follows the IALA (International Associations of Lighthouse Authorities) System A of buoyage and one for inland waters. Generally lakes and rivers follow the system for inland waters but there are some variations between stats and sometimes combinations of both coastal and inland systems are used.


IALA System A for Australian Waters

Lateral Port& starboard buoys which are red and green respectively or piles appropriately coloured with port or starboard top marks float-lateral
Cardinal Combinations of yellow and black with top marks and specific flash pattern lights to indicate the direction of safe water cardinal-float
Isolated Danger Red and black horizontal stripes. May have two black balls as top mark isolated-danger-floats
No Boating Zones Yellow buoy– round or spar or pile with the lettering ‘NO BOATING’ The pile has a yellow cross top mark no-boating-zones
Safe Water Buoys Red and white vertical stripes safe-water-buoys
Special Mark buoys Yellow the chart will indicate reasons for its position special-mark-buoys