Jet Drive Outboard Motors

All vessels on Lady Elliot Island have now been fitted with jet drives, replacing the old style and environmentally unfriendly propellers, to ensure the reduction of environmental impact on the reef and its inhabitants.

Following the success of launching the first jet powered outboard motor on the Great Barrier Reef in 2011, Lady Elliot Island has imported four (4) additional sets of jet pumps from the US that have been installed on the island’s dive and snorkel vessels in what is another fantastic environmental step towards protecting the reef surrounding the island.

The jet motors are propeller free and have no projection below the hull, allowing the vessel to manoeuvre around coral, marine life and people without causing any damage or danger compared to a conventional propeller motor. The jet powered motors enable the boats to draw less than 200mm of water, much less than a propeller driven outboard and we have been extremely impressed with the results.

“These boats can now do tours in very shallow water which means that we are less dependent on tides. This is the most amazing thing for reef boating that I have seen. It is fantastic for the environment minimising the impact to marine life and coral and makes the boat safer in the water. All in all it provides a better experience on the reef.” Peter Gash, Managing Director

In 2011, Lady Elliot Island introduced the first night time glass bottom boat tour on the Great Barrier Reef using LED lighting aboard our jet powered vessel Heron View 2. This tour has been very popular with our guests and now we are trialling black light (UV) on the vessels. This light allows the reef to be seen like never before, showcasing the iridescent colours of the reef and marine life that are completely different to what you see throughout the day.