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It's the Law


PWC operators must obey the laws that apply to other vessels as well as obey additional requirements that apply specifically to the operation of personal watercraft on Texas waters.

Requirements Specific to PWC


Each person riding on or being towed behind a PWC must wear a U.S. Coast Guard–approved Type I, II, III, or V personal flotation device.

If the PWC is equipped with a lanyard-type engine cut-off switch, the lanyard must be attached to the person, clothing, or PFD of the operator.

It is illegal to:

  • Operate a PWC between sunset and sunrise.
  • Operate a PWC within 50 feet of another boat or PWC, a person, a stationary platform, or a shoreline. The only exception is when the PWC is maintaining headway speed.
  • Operate a PWC in a manner that requires the operator to swerve at the last possible moment to avoid a collision. Furthermore, a PWC should not jump the wake of another vessel recklessly or unnecessarily close to that vessel.
  • Chase, harass, or disturb wildlife with your PWC.

PWC must be rated to carry the number of persons on board at any time.