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A law enforcement officer may determine that an unsafe condition presents an especially hazardous condition to persons aboard a vessel and may direct the operator to take immediate, reasonable actions to correct the situation. An especially hazardous condition exists if a reasonably prudent person would believe that continued operation would create a hazard to persons aboard. The law enforcement officer may direct the operator to return a vessel to shore until the condition is corrected or has ended. Refusal by an operator to terminate operation after being ordered to do so is a violation of the Ohio Revised Code.

The following situations present unsafe conditions:

  • Insufficient personal flotation devices
  • Insufficient fire extinguishers
  • Overloaded, insufficient freeboard for the water conditions in which the vessel is operating
  • Improper display of navigation lights
  • Fuel leaks, including fuel leaking from either the engine or fuel system
  • Accumulation of or an abnormal amount of fuel in the bilges
  • Inadequate backfire flame control
  • Improper ventilation