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Course Outline

Observer With Orange Flag Watching Persons Being Towed

Motorboat and PWC operators towing a person(s) on water skis, a wakeboard, a parasail, or any other device must have specific observer and equipment requirements.

  • Every motorboat or PWC towing a person(s) on water skis, a wakeboard, or any device other than a parasail must have either:
    • A person on board, in addition to the operator, observing the towed person(s) at all times (preferably the observer is at least 12 years old) or…
    • An approved ski mirror that is at least three inches in height and eight inches in length, gives 180 degrees of vision behind the operator, and is designed as a ski mirror. The MSHP does not recognize the manufacturer's mirrors on PWC as being sufficient for this purpose.
  • An operator of a motorboat (other than a PWC) on the waters of the Mississippi River, the Missouri River, or Missouri lakes between the hours of 11:00 a.m. and sunset must clearly display a red or orange flag whenever a person enters the water before or after being towed on water skis or other similar devices.
  • Every motorboat or PWC towing a parasailer must have a person at least 12 years old on board, in addition to the operator, actively observing the parasailer.
  • It is strongly recommended that all persons being towed behind a motorboat or PWC on water skis or any other device wear a USCG–approved PFD. Ski belts are not USCG–approved.
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