| All boats must have a USCG-approved wearable (Type I, II, III, or V) life jacket
on board for each person.
In addition to wearable life jackets, boats 16 feet and over must have a throwable
device (Type IV) on board. Canoes and kayaks, regardless of length, are not required to carry a throwable
V life jackets must be used in accordance with any requirements on the approval label.
All life jackets
must be in good and serviceable condition and legibly marked showing the USCG approval number. This
means the life jacket must be fully functional, free of tears or defects in the material. All buckles,
straps, zippers and other closures must be operable.
Wearable life jackets must be “readily accessible,” which
means that the PFDs (personal flotation devices) are stowed where they can be easily reached or that
they are out in the open ready to wear. Type IV flotation devices (throwables) must be “immediately available,” which
means that the device cannot be in a protective covering and shall be within arm’s reach of the operator or
passenger while the boat is operated. A PFD that is sealed in its original packaging is not readily
accessible or immediately available.
jackets must be the appropriate size for the person intended and adjusted to wear.