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Town of Falmouth, Maine
271 Falmouth Road
Falmouth, ME 04105
(207) 781-5253

Boating Safety Center

uscgboat.jpgQuick Tips
• Always wear a life jacket
• Avoid alcohol
• Be especially careful on personal watercrafts
• Children younger than age 13 must wear a Coast Guard approved life jacket while underway
• Enroll in a boater education class
• Don't overload your boat
• Operate at a safe speed
• Always have a passenger serve as a lookout in addition to the operator
• Watch out for low water areas or submerged objects.
Always Wear a Personal Flotation Device (PFD) or Life Jacket
• Most boating fatality victims were found (recovered) NOT wearing a PFD
• Always carry extra PFD's in both adult and child sizes
• Children younger than 13 years old must wear a PFD while underway
Avoid Alcohol
• The probability of being killed in a boating accident doubles when alcohol is involved
• Operating a boat under the influence is just as dangerous as driving a car after you've been drinking
• Boating while intoxicated (BWI) is strictly enforced and carries penalties similar to driving while intoxicated penalties, including possible Driver's License suspension
Enroll in a Boater Education Course - Regardless of Age
• It's a good idea for the whole family to enroll in a boater education course
• A majority (52%) of vessels involved in boating accidents are operated by persons 26-50 years of age
• For information on classroom, home video and on-line course options, visit the US Coast Guard Auxiliary's Casco Bay Flotilla site: 
Be Especially Careful on Personal Watercraft (PWC)
• PWC operators and passengers must wear a life jacket
• Before you borrow or rent a PWC, take the time to learn how to operate the vessel and the rules of the waterway
• Obey the 50-foot rule! Maintain a 50-foot distance from other PWC's, vessels, persons, shore, or stationary platform or other object unless operating at headway (idle) speed.
Operate at a Safe Speed
• Although there are no numerical speed limits on the water, citations may be issued for excessive speed or reckless operation. Use Common sense, and operate at a safe speed at all times - especially in crowded areas.
• Excessive speed is a rate of speed greater than is reasonable or prudent without regard for conditions and hazards or greater than will permit a person to bring the boat to a stop within the assured clear distance ahead.


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