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It's the Law

Sound-Producing Devices


Sound producing devices

Vessels less than 65.6 feet (20 meters) in length, which includes PWCs, are required to carry on board a whistle or horn or some other means to make an efficient sound signal to announce intentions or positions.

Vessels 65.6 feet (20 meters) or more in length are required to carry on board a whistle or horn, and a bell.

Some sound signals that you should be familiar with are:

Restricted Visibility

  • One prolonged blast at intervals of not more than two minutes is the signal used by powerboats when underway.
  • One prolonged blast plus two short blasts at intervals of not more than two minutes is the signal used by sailboats under sail.

Warning

  • One prolonged blast is a warning signal (for example, when coming around a blind bend or exiting a slip).
  • Five (or more) short, rapid blasts signal danger or that you disagree with the other boater’s intentions.