New Boating Laws to be Aware Of

New Boating Laws to be Aware of

JohnFranco Joyce

Laws change and are added all across the coasts. State lawmakers continuously debate on bills relating to boating. Be aware of how these laws can impact a boater like you.

States continue to attempt to, as a whole, become more consistent in their boating laws. That way, boaters will have a national understanding of boating laws as opposed to a statewide understanding. Starting in 2014, lawmakers began to make a concerted effort to create cohesive boating laws.

California and Illinois crack down on boater education

By January 1, 2016, California boaters under the age of 25 will have to complete a boater-safety education course and by 2025, that course will apply to all boaters regardless of age. This knocks down another state that was withholding the boater-safety education course requirement. This leaves just a handful of states that have not implemented this requirement.

Illinois, too, stiffened boating laws by requiring boaters born after January 1, 1998 must achieve a boater safety certificate if opening a boat that has an engine higher than 10 horsepower.

Uniform titling

Uniform titling refers to creating laws intended to protect and benefit boat titles in the same way automobiles are protected. Virginia was at the forefront of this effort in 2013 and several states have since joined, including Connecticut and Washington, D.C.


Tennessee began the trend in 2014 to regulate marinas in order to prevent drowning as a result of electrical-shock. Tennessee's law meant new measures for marina inspection, including but not limited to electrical inspection. Electric-shock drowning is most likely to occur in fresh water.

PWC LifejacketAnchoring

Anchoring is becoming a more popular topic of debate in the court room. Florida first attempted to pass bills and amendments that created personal anchoring laws for Dade and Broward county. These laws were intended to disable anchoring in certain areas and put large restrictions on where anchoring is and is not allowed. Considering these bills did not pass, local governments in the state of Florida, for example, cannot restrict people from anchoring in certain areas. Yet, local governments may restrict anchoring in areas of mooring fields.

Future laws and the outlook of the boating world in the context of legality

Whether new laws regard age requirements, fishing restrictions or deal with oil usage, the legalities within the world of boating are ever changing. Did you know the United States Environmental Protection Agency is now looking into "renewable volume obligations" for 2017 in regards to the 2005 Renewable Fuel Standards law. This law mandates the ethanol percentage in gas supply. Moreover, it aimed to reduce greenhouse gas emission. Keep up with boat applicable laws at Boat U.S. Government Affairs.

You're best bet is to simply take a boating course in your state so you will be an expert on the laws! Also, that will give you a nice discount on your boating insurance. Understand that laws from state to state differ.

Alabama is the only state that requires an actual boat license to operate a boat.