Hanson Australia’s general manager of logistics Scott Tipping will spend 12 days travelling along Australia’s east coast by jet ski in a bid to raise up to $20,000 for the funding of mental health awareness initiatives and education.
Tipping will ride his jet ski on behalf of RU OK? which is regularly supported by Hanson Australia. RU OK? aims to empower and inspire people to connect with each other and support others that are struggling with depression and other mental health conditions. RU OK? Day is scheduled for Thursday, 14 September.
Tipping’s 12-day trip will begin at Hanson’s Port Melbourne headquarters on Monday, 11 September. He will make stopovers at Hanson quarries on Victoria’s southwest coast and then along the eastern seaboard to “spread the message about RU OK?” and reiterate Hanson’s key message and philosophy that “mates look after mates”.
From 11 to 22 September, Tipping will visit Hanson operations at Lakes Entrance, Ulladulla, Bass Point, Gosford, Kulnura, Salamander Bay, Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbour, and Ballina. He will complete his ride at Hanson’s West End customer service centre in Brisbane on Friday, 22 September.
'Something to do with the water’
In explaining his reasons for undertaking such a challenging journey, Tipping said: “For me personally I have seen our employees impacted directly and indirectly by suicide and mental health issues – it is devastating. This year I wanted to do something to really raise the profile of RU OK? Day, both at Hanson and more broadly in the industry.
“When I was thinking about ways to raise awareness and funds, a jet ski was the first thing that came into my head,” he continued. “I love boating and the water so it was always going to be something to do with the water.”
Although Tipping has been training on a jet ski for only four months, he said he has been involved in boating for most of his life. He has been training with the jet ski on weekends and the longest ride he has taken on the sea so far is 200km – which is around the average distance he will travel per day during the 12-day ride.
In the weeks leading up to the trip, Tipping plans on increasing his training to three to four days a week. “In addition I have been doing a lot of fitness to make sure my body can get through the 12 days,” he said.
Strong safety focus
Just as Tipping treats safety very seriously in his work for Hanson, he will not be disregarding it on his ride.
“A lot of planning has gone into the trip and safety has been a very big consideration. I will be notifying the relevant maritime authorities each day when I depart and return,” Tipping said. “I will also have an EPIRB (emergency position indicating radio beacon) on the jet ski, a personal locator beacon on my person, life jacket, reserve fuel, radio and satellite phone. I am not taking chances when it comes to safety.
“I will be following the coast so most of the time I will be quite close to land,” Tipping added. “That said, at times I will go a little bit further off the coast to cut travel times. Having so many GPS devices on me means I should be sure about exactly where I am! I have also been consulting with people who are very experienced in jet ski riding to make sure I account for things that I don’t know.
“My shortest day on the water will be about three hours and my longest will be around eight hours,” he said. “I have allowed time in my journey for unforeseen circumstances such as breakdowns and storms. Safety is a key priority so if I need to stop I have time in the schedule to accommodate that.”
Tipping won’t be completely alone on the ride. A car carrying additional gear will follow him along the coast and will enable him to do checks on the jet ski at the beginning and end of each day. He will also be stopping and staying overnight at different locations every day, and resuming early the next morning.
Tipping is, amongst many things, self-funding the flight from Brisbane to Melbourne, his insurance/indemnity costs, and the jet ski and associated costs. He acknowledges that the total costs are “significant but if I meet the aim to raise as much awareness and money as possible for RU OK? then it will be worth it”.
Hanson, his Hanson colleagues, friends and supporters online, are sponsoring him, with all proceeds to go to the RU OK? organisation. At the time of writing, Tipping has raised more than $9500. His initial ambition was to raise up to $10,000 but as he draws closer to that target, he now believes he can exceed it and even “get to 20K”.
“I have received a huge amount of support,” he said. “From people donating money, advice, time or just encouragement, the support has been astounding. This has really demonstrated to me just how passionate people are about mental health.”
Tipping will be posting updates via his LinkedIn page and internally at Hanson via email.
RU OK? has also dedicated a section on its website to publicising Tipping’s ride and where visitors can also make a donation. Tipping’s LinkedIn page also links to his RU OK? donations page.
As Hanson’s general manager of logistics, Scott Tipping works out of Hanson’s Brisbane customer service centre, where he has functional responsibility for the performance of Hanson’s road fleet, including driver training, truck specifications, safety, process and best practice. He has worked for Hanson for more than 10 years throughout Queensland and New South Wales, including four years as the operations manager for quarries in the Sydney metro region.
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