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Course Outline

PWC jumping wake of a boat; prohibited sign on the image

In Virginia, these are the operating laws for PWC.

  • It is illegal to operate a PWC between sunset and sunrise.
  • When operating a PWC, you must reduce speed to no wake or idle speed when within 50 feet of:
    • Docks, piers, or boathouses
    • Boat ramps
    • Persons in the water (note this does not apply to your towed skier)
    • Another vessel other than a PWC
  • A PWC must be operated in a reasonable and prudent manner at all times. It is illegal to:
    • Weave your PWC through waterway traffic or anchored vessels.
    • Steer toward another object or person in the water and turn sharply to spray or attempt to spray them with water.
    • Follow closely behind another vessel or skier.
    • Jump the wake of another vessel, or cross the path of another vessel, more closely than is reasonable and prudent.
    • Cut between a vessel and the person(s) being towed by that vessel.
  • It is illegal to chase, harass, or disturb marine wildlife with your PWC.
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