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General Boating Safety Tips

~ Be aware of changing weather and ocean conditions. Visit NOAA's National Weather Service Forecast Office for more information.

~ Wear lifejackets while underway. Hawai‘i law requires children under 13 to wear a Coast Guard approved lifejacket unless the child is below deck or in an enclosed cabin.

~ Monitor VHF communications to stay alert about other vessel and wildlife location and movement in the area. Report new sightings and their locations. All recreational boaters going more than 1 mile offshore in Hawai`i must carry a VHF radio or EPIRB (Emergency Positioning Indicator Radio Beacon). Exempted vessels include canoes, thrillcraft, surfboards, and paddleboards. Kayaks and training vessels are also exempt when accompanied by at least one vessel that has a VHF radio or EPIRB.

~ Be cautious about carbon monoxide emissions when idling and remaining in a small or concentrated area.

~ Avoid collisions with humpback whales. Watch your speed and post a lookout for surfacing whales while underway during whale season (November - May).

To find out more about boater safety in Hawai‘i visit the U.S. Coast Guard or to register for boater education courses call the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary at 1-800-818-8724.


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