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Some people say they don’t wear their PFDs because they’re too hot or too bulky. But that’s not an excuse anymore. Inflatable PFDs offer a U.S. Coast Guard (USCG)–approved wearable PFD that is small and lightweight. Inflatable PFDs come in two styles: a PFD that looks like a pair of suspenders or a belt pack that looks like a small fanny pack.

  • Some of these PFDs are designed to inflate if the wearer falls into the water; others require the wearer to pull a cord.
  • Inflatable PFDs are approved only for people 16 and older, and they are not to be worn on personal watercraft (PWC) or while water-skiing.
  • Read the operating instructions and the approval label before you choose an inflatable PFD. Then be sure to wear it!
Type III inflatable PFD
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