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Boating Basics

Other PWC Considerations


Remember that you and anyone on board must wear a PFD.

Frequently inspect your PWC’s electrical systems (e.g., starter and engine gauge connections) to ensure there is no potential for electrical spark. Gas fumes could collect in the engine compartment, and an explosion could occur. After fueling, sniff the engine compartment for any evidence of gas fumes.

Make sure that every operator and passenger knows how to swim.

Keep hands, feet, loose clothing, and hair away from the pump intake. Before cleaning debris away from the pump intake, always shut off the engine.

Never exceed the manufacturer’s recommended capacity for your PWC.

See Fueling a Vessel for safety tips on fueling PWC.

See Requirements Specific to PWC for legal requirements specific to PWC.

Here are some important things to do when operating a PWC:

  • Do not ride too closely behind another PWC. If it turns sharply or if it stalls, you could collide with it; if the other rider falls off, you could run over him or her.
  • Be aware of all traffic in your boating area; don’t focus just on the short distance ahead.
  • Always remember that operating a PWC has the same responsibilities as operating any other vessel.

It is prohibited to use a PWC, regardless of size, to tow waterskiers, tubes, or any similar device upon Massachusetts waters.

PWC operator and passenger wearing life jackets
Every person on board a PWC must wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket (PFD).