Boating Safety Guide: Staying Safe on the Water
You learned the "rules of the road" before you sat behind the wheel of a car, and you should do the same before taking the helm. Just like studying to get your driver’s license, it is very important to have the boating information and certifications you need to be a safe boater before you hit the water.
In fact, a number of states require powerboat operators to take a boater’s education course and carry a license or certificate proving successful course completion any time they're on the water. By consulting our safe boating guide and obtaining the required certificates beforehand, you not only protect yourself and family but other boaters on the water.
To learn more about the boating rules, laws and regulations in your state regarding life jacket requirements, minimum age to operate a boat or personal watercraft, and so much more, visit our interactive map.
Boat Safety Checklist & Equipment List
No matter what type of boating you do, you'll need a few critical items onboard, including some required by the U.S. Coast Guard.
Using Your Boat's Engine Cut-Off Switch (ECOS)
Learning how to use your boat or personal watercraft's engine cut-off switch, or ECOS, is a must, especially for boats under 26 feet in length.
Safe Boating Guides - By Topic
- Follow our pre-departure checklist to double check that you have everything you need for a day on the water.
- You can have a safe vessel year round by utilizing our semi-annual maintenance guide.
Latest Wave of Boating News & Resources
These top 10 picks prove 2022 is the perfect year to enjoy some awesomely affordable boating. Dive into the boating lifestyle with these new entry-level models, including everything from aluminum fishing boats to bowriders, personal watercrafts (PWC), center consoles, and more.
2021 is just around the corner! As a boater, what's your New Year's resolution for the new year? Need some help coming up with ideas? We've got you covered.
It's time to deck the hulls! 'Tis the season for lighted, holiday boat parades across the country. Explore our comprehensive list by state to find a parade in your area, and find tips on how to decorate your boat.