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All information provided by the U.S. Coast Guard.

The federal statutes authorize the U.S. Coast Guard to regulate the manufacture and safety standards of recreational boats and boating-related equipment.

These include regulations for:
  • Manufacturer certification
  • Identification of boats
  • Display of capacity information
  • Safe loading
  • Safe powering
  • Flotation
  • Electrical systems
  • Fuel systems
  • Ventilation
  • Start-in-gear protection
  • Navigation lights
  • Backfire flame control
  • Negligent operation
  • Operating a vessel while under the influence of alcohol or a dangerous drug
  • Numbering undocumented vessels
  • Reporting undocumented vessel accidents and casualties
  • State numbering and casualty reporting systems
  • Carriage and use of personal flotation devices (PFDs)
  • Carriage and use of visual distress signals (VDS)
  • Carriage of fire extinguishing equipment
  • Correction of especially hazardous conditions
  • Regulated boating areas
  • Vessel identification system

Safety Standards and Regulations for Recreational Boats and Equipment Regulations for Operators of Recreational and Undocumented Vessels.

Code of Federal Regulations: Title 46
Code of Federal Regulations: Title 33

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