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Inflatable Boat laws/regulations

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 10:42 am
by joshcl
Hey guys I took my inflatable kayaks out a few times last year without any problems and then I picked up a 4 man inflatable raft (different brand) and when I went to take it out on a small lake in a county park they told us it had to be coast guard approved. Note they only inspected the boat which had a hull id and capacity. They did not inspect my advanced frame or other kayak.

So can anyone tell me if this is true? From what I tried to find online it does not appear to coastguard approves small boats like kayaks and canoes nor do they require them to be approved. I cannot find any information on the coast guard website though.

Posted: Fri Mar 22, 2013 8:59 am
Different Counties and Different states have different requirements. Most of the time, these requirements apply only to hardshell boats and/or boats with an outboard motor. Typically the local parks and rec. don't understand their own regulations. Other cases, it is what it is. All of our kayaks are NMMA approved as it states on the capacity labels. This is the National Marine Manufacturers Association. Check on the website of your local Parks and Rec and see what requirements they have and how to comply with them. It is possible that your raft meets the requirements but there is also the possibility that it falls into a category which it doesn't. If you cannot understand the requirements, as sometimes it is hard because of all the legal jargon typed up, try to get ahold of someone to clarify.

Posted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 4:16 pm
by PJohanson
From what I've been able to find, all Advanced Elements boats meet the Canadian regulations. Always carry a 50-foot-long floating rope (ideally in a throw bag) and a bailer or water pump, and at least one paddle, and always wear your certified lifejacket or personal flotation device with a whistle attached to it and a waterproof flashlight.
For general boat safety knowledge, it's a good idea for Canadians to get their small boat operator's license, even though it's not required for these boats. At the very least, go to a beginner boating safety course taught at your local kayaking store or yacht club or recreation centre. It takes so little time, and it helps you understand your boat!