143035_DBW Course_r3

Chapter 2 X Boating Law, Navigational Rules and Navigational Aids

REQUIRED SAFETY EQUIPMENT Recreational vessels must carry specified safety equipment, which may vary according to the type of boat, the boat’s power source, the boat’s length, the place and time you’re using it and the number of people aboard. Sailboats, canoes, rowboats, and inflatable rafts equipped with motors are considered motorboats and must be equipped as motorboats.


Beginning April 2022, the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) issued new regulations for fire extinguisher dates of manu facture and label classifications. Fire extinguishers must not be more than 12 years old according to the date of manufacture stamped on the bottle. Boaters can find the manufac ture date stamped into the bottom of the bottle or near the UL label. This may be two or four digits — if it is two, as in 06, that means 2006. Additionally, while the new regula tion does not change the type (USCG rated) or quantity requirements for USCG-approved fire extinguishers aboard, it does specify the minimum Underwriter Laboratory (UL) classifi cation of extinguishers to be carried aboard certain vessels — depending on the boat’s model year. Vessels model year 2018 or newer must carry fire extinguishers labeled as 5-B, 10-B or 20-B. The old labels of B-I or B-II only are no longer acceptable. Vessels model year 2017 or older may keep serviceable extinguishers labeled B-I and B-II if they are less than 12 years old. This is the result of phasing out older B-I and B-II labels for newer 5-B 10-B and 20-B extinguisher classifications. The number in this new rating refers to the size in square feet of the potential fire the device is suitable to extinguish and not the exact weight of the dry chemical inside the bottle. See the tables on page 24. There are no changes to rechargeable or fixed-mount (i.e., engine room) extinguisher regulations.

Fire Extinguishers

Does your boat have any one or more of the following? ƒ Inboard or stern-drive engine

ƒ Closed compartments where portable fuel tanks may be stored ƒ Double-walled hulls that are not sealed or not completely filled with flotation material ƒ Enclosed living spaces ƒ Closed stowage compartments in which combustible or flammable materials may be stored ƒ Permanently installed fuel tanks If you answered “yes” to any of the fire extinguisher questions: Your boat must carry a Coast Guard-approved fire extinguisher in an easy to-reach location. Fire extinguishers are classified by letters and Roman numeral symbols. The letter indicates the type of fire the device is made to extinguish and the Roman numeral indicates the size of the extinguisher: The Coast Guard requires Type B extinguishers that are designed for flammable liquids such as gasoline, oil and grease fires. An extinguisher is suitable for marine use when it bears a label that either has: Coast Guard approval numbers, “Marine Type USCG” or both markings. Information stating that it is listed with Underwriters Laboratories (UL) and suitable for marine use must also be on the extinguisher. It must be of the type and size described in Table B. UL-listed extinguishers must bear a UL rating of 5-B or higher. Note: All recently manufactured UL Marine Type 5, 10, and 20 extinguishers will bear both the UL and Coast Guard markings. The Roman numerals after the letters, I and II, indicate the size of the extinguisher. A Class B-II extinguisher has four to five times more extinguishing material than a Class B-I extinguisher. Remember: Boat operators should show all passengers where safety equipment is stored. Make sure your passengers know what to do in case of an emergency.


California Course for Safe Boating

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