Boating Regulations

The following is a summary of Florida's boating laws, found in Ch. 327 External Website and Ch. 328 External Website, Florida Statutes. This information is included in all certified boating safety courses taught in Florida.

Note: This information is accurate as of September 2014 and is subject to change in May of each year. Please call the FWC's Boating Safety Section at 850-488-5600 for annual updates to this information or questions regarding boating safety course requirements.

There is no minimum age to operate a boat.  However the personal watercraft regulations and boating safety requirements below are age specific and would apply.


Vessel Registration

Boating Accidents

Reckless and Careless Operation

Mandatory Violator Education

Airboat Regulations

Vessel Speed Restrictions

Boating Under the Influence

Water Ski Regulations

Personal Watercraft Regulations

Mooring to Markers or Buoys

Updated Boating Safety Education Requirements

Divers-down Flag

Interference with Navigation

Equipment and Lighting Requirements

Maximum Loading and Horsepower

Liveries (Boat/PWC rental facilities)

FWC Facts:
Boats less than 16 feet long must carry at least 3 visual distress signals approved for nighttime use whenever they are on coastal waters from sunset to sunrise.

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