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You are looking at a preview of what’s in the timed Boat Pennsylvania Course. Feel free to look around, but you’ll need to register to begin progress toward getting your Pennsylvania Boater Education Certificate.

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While these rules of courteous operation are especially important for PWC operators, they apply to all other vessel operators as well.

  • Jumping the wake of a passing boat, or riding too close to another PWC or boat, creates risks and is restricted or even prohibited in some states. Here's why.
    • The boat making the wake may block the PWC operator's view of oncoming traffic and also conceal the PWC operator from approaching vessels.
    • It can be very stressful for boat operators to have PWCs continually in close proximity to their boats.
    • Wake jumping and riding too close to other vessels are common complaints others have against PWC operators.
  • Do not attempt to spray others with the wake of your PWC. Not only is this discourteous, but it is also dangerous and reckless operation.
Annoying PWC riding too close to boat
Excessive Noise from PWCs

Excessive noise from personal watercraft often makes them unwelcome with other vessel operators, as well as with people on shore. Here are some tips on how you can be a courteous PWC operator.

  • Vary your operating area, and do not keep repeating the same maneuver.
  • Avoid congregating with other PWC operators near shore, which increases annoying noise levels.
  • Avoid making excessive noise near residential and camping areas, particularly early in the morning. Excessive use in one area can be an irritant to people who are there to enjoy a quiet and relaxing time.
  • Avoid maneuvers that cause the engine exhaust to lift out of the water because that increases noise levels.
  • Do not modify your engine exhaust system if it increases the noise. Improperly modified exhausts will not make your PWC faster and may raise the noise to an illegal level.
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