Boating Regulations

Connecticut and New York summaries:

CONNECTICUT STATE Requirements- Persons required to complete the course
To legally operate any boat with an engine or motor, other than a personal watercraft, or a sailboat 191/2 feet in length or longer, the following persons must obtain a Safe Boating Certificate:
- Residents of Connecticut
- Owners of real property in Connecticut
- Anyone using Connecticut waters more than 60 days in a year.
A person who has a valid vessel operator license by the United States Coast Guard does not require a Safe Boating Certificate. They must have a copy of the license on board the recreational vessel on which they are operating.

Operators of a personal watercraft, regardless of state residency, must possess a Certificate of Personal Watercraft Operation to operate on Connecticut waters. The Connecticut Safe Boating Certificate and Certificate of Personal Watercraft Operation are accepted in many states. Connecticut recognizes certificates from New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island for use upon our waters.
ALL COURSES LISTED by us in CT are "Combination Courses" and include both the Safe Boating Certificate and Certificate of Personal Watercraft operation and Safe Waterskiing Endorsement. Take the course and you meet the requirements for boating and PWC/Jetski operation.

CONNECTICUT Minimum Age of Operation
No person under 16 years of age, who has been issued a Certificate of Personal Watercraft Operation (CPWO) after March 9, 2004, may operate a personal watercraft without the onboard supervision of a person who is at least 18 years of age and in possession of a CPWO. Operators between the age of 12 and 16, who were issued a CPWO on or before March 9, 2004, may operate a personal watercraft by themselves, although the DEEP recommends that they be accompanied by a person 18 years or older who possesses a certificate. All out of state boaters must be 16 to operate a personal watercraft by themselves. No person under 12 years of age shall operate a vessel with greater than 10 horsepower unless accompanied by a person at least 18 years old. Both persons must have certificates to operate.

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NEW YORK STATE Requirements- Persons required to complete the course
You must hold a safety certificate if:
- You operate a PWC/Personal WaterCraft (JetSki, Waverunner, etc) and are at least 14 years of age.
- You wish to operate a motorboat and you were born on or after January 1, 1988.
- If you are less than 10 years old you may operate a motorboat (non-PWC) only if someone at least 18 years old is on board with you. Anyone may operate a personal watercraft if someone at least 18 years old is riding on the craft and they hold a safety certificate.

EFFECTIVE JANUARY 1, 2020 Brianna's Law starts phasing in. Brianna's law requires all power boaters:
~Those born on or after 1/1/1993 will need a safety certificate beginning January 2020.
~Those born on or after 1/1/1988 will need a safety certificate beginning January 2022.
~Those born on or after 1/1/1983 will need a safety certificate beginning January 2023.
~Those born on or after 1/1/1978 will need a safety certificate beginning January 2024.
~All powerboat operators regardless of age will need a boating safety certificate beginning in January 2025.

A safety certificate issued to a resident of another state or country is acceptable provided the certificate is carried while operating in New York State. Please note the certificate must be issued by the state or country of residence and should be NASBLA approved.

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Federal Regulations: https://www.uscgboating.org/regulations/

New York Regulations: https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nysparks/ny_boatersguide_21/
Connecticut Regulations: https://www.safeboatingamerica.com/ConnecticutBoatersGuide2021.pdf