Vessel operators (including PWC operators) towing a person(s) on water skis, aquaplanes, surfboards, inner tubes, or any similar devices have specific equipment and observer requirements.
- Each person being towed behind a vessel on water skis or any other device must wear a USCG–approved Type I, II, III, or V PFD.
- Inflatable PFDs are not approved for use by persons being towed.
- This law does not apply to persons participating in a permitted marine event, such as barefoot or trick water-skiing. An approved PFD must be on board the vessel for each of these skiers.
- A vessel towing a person(s) on water skis or any other device must have at least two competent persons on board—one to operate the vessel and a second person to observe the towed person(s).
- This law does not apply to vessels that are operated by a person at least 16 years old and that are equipped with a wide-angle, convex rearview mirror, at least 7 x 14 inches in size, which is positioned to allow the operator to observe the person(s) being towed.
- This law does not apply to vessels engaged in authorized water-skiing tournaments or competitions.
- If towing a skier with a PWC and an observer is on board, the PWC must be rated for at least three people—the operator, the observer, and the skier.