Age and Boating Education Requirements
All persons born on or after July 1, 1972, must have in their possession a Certificate of Boating Safety Education to operate a numbered or documented vessel (including personal watercraft) legally on Maryland's public waters.
The Certificate of Boating Safety Education is obtained by successfully completing a boating safety education course or passing an equivalency examination approved by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. The certificate is valid for the lifetime of the person to whom it is issued.
Persons required to have a Certificate of Boating Safety Education must have the certificate on board and available for inspection by an enforcement officer whenever operating a vessel on Maryland waters.
No one under 16 years of age may legally operate a personal watercraft, even if the person possesses a Certificate of Boating Safety Education.
No one under 12 years of age may legally operate a vessel towing a person(s) on water skis, an aquaplane, a parasail, or a similar device.