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Boating Basics


Before going out on the water, take steps to make the outing safe and enjoyable.

Vessel Length Classes


A vessel’s length class determines the equipment necessary to comply with federal and state laws.

Vessels are divided into length classes:

  • Less than 16 feet
  • 16 feet to less than 26 feet
  • 26 feet to less than 40 feet
  • 40 feet to less than 65 feet

Length is measured from the tip of the bow in a straight line to the stern. This does not include outboard motors, brackets, rudders, bow attachments, or swim platforms and ladders that are not a molded part of the hull.

Vessel length
Length is measured from the tip of the bow in a straight line to the stern.