Sailing is a fun activity, but it has various restrictions to ensure safety for the boat’s passengers and others sailing nearby. There are state laws setting requirements concerning the watercraft’s size, capacity or equipment.
Additionally, the law imposes skill and expertise requirements for watercraft operators. These regulations are in place to ensure only qualified individuals can take charge of a boat. Aside from credential requirements, there are age restrictions, specifically for personal watercraft in Ohio waters.
Generally, anyone under 16 cannot legally operate a personal watercraft unless supervised by someone at least 18 years old. In addition to meeting the age requirement, the supervising individual must also have proper credentials to oversee the operation of the watercraft.
This person is also responsible for complying with all boating regulations, especially with activities performed on the boat. Other age restrictions can apply, depending on the circumstances. Sometimes, a qualified supervisor must be on the vessel even if it has no engine.
Failing to follow these regulations can increase boating accidents risks, potentially causing injuries or even fatalities. If not appropriately implemented, authorities can reprimand violators or even make arrests if there are severe offenses.
Failing to meet boating safety standards has consequences
Whether going against age restrictions or weight capacities, all these violations can be recklessness, possibly leading to intervention by the authorities. Any watercraft operator, commercial or personal, should know about the safety risks and the laws surrounding boating.
If a passenger on the boat sustains an injury because of someone else’s negligence, they can pursue compensation based on the situation. Being reckless on a vessel is inexcusable, especially if the at-fault party deliberately commits violations, endangering and hurting others.