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    under florida law, what is required for children under 6 years of age while underway on any vessel less than 26 feet in length?


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    State Boating Laws

    Life Jackets

    [Table 4.9] State

    Which persons in your state are required to wear a PFD and under what circumstances?

    What are the penalties for violating PFD regulations in your state?


    1)all children under the age of 8 while onboard any vessel unless in an enclosed cabin or enclosed sleeping area regardless of whether the vessel is in operation 2)all persons on a vessel within 800 feet below a hydroelectric dam and/or navigation lock and dam 3) anyone operating or riding as a passenger on a pwc 4) anyone being towed on water skis, surfboard, dics, spinners, tubes or other similar devices.

    referencing above, violation of 1)$100; violation of 2)$50; violation of 3)$25; violation of 4)$50


    Under 13 when in open boats or on open decks or when water skiing

    $100 for under 13 violation $100 for type IV violation $100 for first PFD carriage violation and $50 for each additional person

    American Samoa

    All on board while boat is underway.

    $1000 fine Arizona

    All children 12 years of age and younger must wear a U.S. Coast Guard–approved Type I, II, or III life jackets (PFDs) while underway on any vessel. The life jackets (PFDs) must be fastened according to the manufacturer’s recommended use and must fit the child properly.


    Anyone 12yrs old or younger must wear a PFD at all times. The only exception is when they are within the enclosed area of a houseboat or cruiser, or within the area enclosed by railings on a party barge, cruiser or houseboat - while the boat is NOT underway.

    $100 to $250 Australia British Columbia California

    Age 12 and younger on vessels less than 26 ft in length or in enclosed cabin or tethered to the mast fo a sailboat . All water-skiers and PWC operators, unless competing in sanctioned races or exhibition

    Violations are infractions, with fine of not nore than $150


    persons aboard a PWC, water skiers or persons engaged in similar activities, children less than 13 YOA unless such child is below deck or in an enclosed cabin, persons participating in a regulated river trip provided by a river outfitter unless such river trip is on designated flatwater

    $50.00, except for regulated river trips which have a minimum penalty of $100.00


    All people under 12 years old except when below decks - anyone being towed behind a vessel - all people on pwc's

    Fine $75. Delaware

    all children 13 and younger

    25 dollar fine

    District of Columbia

    When the operator of a vessel sixteen feet (16 ft.) or more in length is under eighteen (18) years of age, the operator and all other persons aboard the vessel who are under eighteen (18) years of age shall wear a Coast Guard approved personal floatation device of the proper size. All persons aboard any vessel in the area from the southernmost point of the cove commonly known as Fletcher’s Cove in the Georgetown Channel of the Potomac River upstream to the District of Columbia boundary line at Little Falls shall wear a Coast Guard-approved personal floatation device at all times. No person may operate a recreational vessel underway with any child under thirteen years old aboard, unless each child is below the deck, in an enclosed cabin or wearing a US Coast Guard approved personal floatation device.

    Criminal Citation for violation of DCRM 19, Chapter 10, Section 26. $50.00 fine


    Children under 6 years of age must wear a USCG-approved Type I, II or III PFD at all times while on any vessel less than 26 feet in length that is underway. In addition, each person on board a PWC, and anyone being towed behind a vessel must wear a USCG-approved PFD.

    Non-criminal infraction, with a $50 - $80 fine, depending on the county where the violation occurs.


    Children under 10 in an open vessel. All person in a designated Hazardous Area.

    Misdemeanor Guam None Up to the court Hawaii

    all children under the age of thirteen are required to wear a properly fitted personal flotation device whenever the vessel is underway on the ocean waters or navigable streams of the state or when moored or anchored offshore in a non-designated offshore mooring area, unless the children are below decks or in an enclosed cabin.

    §200-14 Violation of rules; penalty. (a) Any person who violates any rule adopted by the department under this part or who violates this part, shall be fined not more than $1,000 or less than $50 for each violation, and any vessel, the agents; owner, or crew of which violate the rules of the department or this part, shall be fined not more than $1,000 or less than $50 for each violation; provided that in addition to or as a condition to the suspension of the fines and penalties, the court may deprive the offender of the privilege of operating or mooring any vessel in state waters for a period of not more than thirty days. [§200-14.5] General administrative penalties. (a) Except as otherwise provided by law, the board is authorized to set, charge, and collect administrative fines and to recover administrative fees and costs, including attorney's fees and costs, or bring legal action to recover administrative fines and fees and costs, including attorney's fees and costs, or payment for damages or for the cost to correct damages resulting from a violation of subtitle 8 of title 12 or any rule adopted thereunder. Each day or instance of violation shall constitute a separate offense. (1) For a first violation or a violation beyond five years of a previous violation, a fine of not more than $5,000; (2) For a second violation within five years of a previous violation, by a fine of not more than $10,000; and: (3) For a third or subsequent violation within five years of the last violation, by a fine of not more than $15,000.

    Source : www.uscgboating.org

    Specific PFD Requirements

    Specific PFD Requirements

    Florida law requires the following with respect to life jackets.

    All vessels must carry one USCG–approved wearable life jacket for each person on board.

    In addition to the above requirement, vessels 16 feet in length or longer must have one USCG–approved throwable device on board and immediately available.

    Children under six years of age must wear a USCG–approved life jacket at all times while on any vessel less than 26 feet in length that is underway upon Florida waters. (“Underway” means any time except when the vessel is anchored, moored, docked, or aground.) Life jackets must be used in accordance with the USCG approval label.

    Each person on board a PWC, and anyone being towed behind a vessel, must wear a USCG–approved life jacket. Inflatable life jackets are not to be worn on PWC or while water-skiing.

    All life jackets must be in good and serviceable condition and legibly marked showing the USCG approval number. The life jackets must be of the proper size for the intended wearer. Sizing for life jackets is based on body weight and chest size.


    Buy a comfortable life jacket and WEAR IT, even if you are not required by law to do so! Most people who die in boating accidents drown, and many of them could swim. Never depend upon your swimming ability to keep you safe in a boating emergency.

    Boater's Tip

    The labels on USCG–approved PFDs are being changed. The new labels use “wearable” and “throwable.” For now, some approved PFDs may still be labeled as a Type I, II, III, IV, or V.

    Source : www.boat-ed.com

    Boating Regulations


    Home Boating Boating Regulations

    Boating Regulations

    The following is a summary of Florida's boating laws, found in Ch. 327 and Ch. 328, Florida Statutes. This information is included in all certified boating safety courses taught in Florida.

    Note: This information is accurate as of February 2022 and is subject to change in May of each year. Please call the FWC's Boating Safety Section at 850-488-5600 for annual updates to this information or questions regarding boating safety course requirements.

    There is no minimum age to operate a boat. However the personal watercraft regulations and boating safety requirements below are age specific and would apply.

    Vessel Registration

    Expand/Collapse Vessel Registration

    Boating Accidents

    Expand/Collapse Boating Accidents

    Reckless and Careless Operation

    Expand/Collapse Reckless and Careless Operation

    Mandatory Violator Education

    Expand/Collapse Mandatory Violator Education

    Airboat Regulations

    Expand/Collapse Airboat Regulations

    Vessel Speed Restrictions

    Expand/Collapse Vessel Speed Restrictions

    Boating Under the Influence

    Expand/Collapse Boating Under the Influence

    Water Ski Regulations

    Expand/Collapse Water Ski Regulations

    Personal Watercraft Regulations

    Expand/Collapse Personal Watercraft Regulations

    Mooring to Markers or Bouys

    Expand/Collapse Mooring to Markers or Bouys

    Updated Boating Safety Requirements

    Expand/Collapse Updated Boating Safety Requirements

    Divers-down Warning Devices

    Expand/Collapse Divers-down Warning Devices

    Interference with Navigation

    Expand/Collapse Interference with Navigation

    Equipment and Lighting Requirements

    Expand/Collapse Equipment and Lighting Requirements

    Maximum Horsepower and Loading

    Expand/Collapse Maximum Horsepower and Loading

    Liveries (Boat/Rental Facilities)

    Expand/Collapse Liveries (Boat/Rental Facilities)

    Marine Sanitation Devices

    Expand/Collapse Marine Sanitation Devices

    Muffling Devices

    Expand/Collapse Muffling Devices

    Law Enforcement Authority

    Expand/Collapse Law Enforcement Authority

    Manatee Awareness

    Expand/Collapse Manatee Awareness

    Seagrass Awareness

    Expand/Collapse Seagrass Awareness


    Expand/Collapse Paddleboards

    Source : myfwc.com

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