SUMMARY OF VERMONT'S BOATING SAFETY LAWS

 

·           A person under the age of 12 may not operate a motor­boat powered by more than six horsepower.

·            A person under the age of 12 must wear a Coast Guard approved personal flotation device aboard a vessel while under way and on an open deck.

·            A person under the age of 16 must WEAR a Coast Guard approved personal flotation device while aboard a sailboard.

·            A person under the age of 16 is prohibited from operat­ing "personal watercraft" (ski-jets).  All individuals operating a personal watercraft (ski-jet) must wear a Type I, II or III United States Coast Guard approved personal flotation device. Operation of personal watercraft be­tween one-half hour after sunset and one-half hour before sunrise is prohibited. 

·            An implied consent law similar to the DWl law has been created for boating while intoxicated.

·            No vessel may be operated within 200 feet of shoreline, a person in the water, other vessels, anchorage or docks except at a speed of less than 5 miles per hour which does not create a wake.

·            Motorized vessels shall not be operated within 200 feet of a designated swimming area or of a divers-down flag.

·            Specific provisions are created for designation and protection of underwater historic preservation areas.

·            Residential use of overnight sleeping vessels is prohibited on waters lacking sanitary waste pumpout facilities.

·            United States Coast Guard Inland navigation rules are adopted for Lake Champlain, Lake Memphremagog and Wallace Pond in Canaan.

·            The required water ski observer must be at least 12 years old.

·            All engines must be muffled in order to reduce operating noise level to not more than 82 decibels on the A scale at 50 feet.

·            Effective July 1, 1991, all Individuals born after January 1, 1974, are required to complete a boating safety course prior to operation of a motorboat. For Information on a safe boating courses check us on the internet at http://www.dps.state.vt.us.

·            Effective May 1, 1995, all recreational boats, canoes and kayaks less than 16' in length must carry a type I, II, III or V wearable P.F.D. for each person on board.