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Course Outline

Missouri law requires the following with respect to PFDs.

  • All vessels 16 feet in length or longer must carry one wearable USCG–approved PFD for each person on board or being towed. Vessels less than 16 feet in length must carry one wearable or one throwable USCG–approved device for each person on board or being towed. Under federal law, however, a wearable PFD is required for each person on board regardless of vessel length.
  • In addition to the requirements above, vessels 16 feet in length or longer must have one USCG–approved throwable device on board and readily accessible.
  • PFDs may not be stowed in closed or locked compartments.
  • Children under seven years of age must wear a USCG–approved Type I, II, III, or V PFD at all times while on board any vessel, unless the child is confined in a totally enclosed area of the vessel, such as the cabin area of a houseboat or day cruiser.
  • All PFDs must be in good and serviceable condition and readily accessible. The PFDs must be of the proper size for the intended wearer. Sizing for PFDs is based on body weight and chest size.
Person fitting a PFD on a child
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